My teenager is going away to college. Do I need additional insurance for their personal belongings?

Additional insurance may or may not need to be purchased to cover the personal belongings of a teenager who has recently gone away to college. Whether or not additional coverage will need to be added to cover personal belongings will depend upon where the child will be living and where the items will be stored.

Teenagers from Newark, NJ that stay in dorms will be covered by their parents’ homeowner’s policy. The homeowner’s policy typically will cover any incidents of theft, fire, or vandalism that may occur with a teenager’s personal belongings.

When covered under a parent’s homeowner’s policy, the coverage that is offered is limited. Most homeowner’s policies will place a 10% limit on the amount that will cover a teen’s personal property. If the 10% limit is not enough to cover the cost of personal belongings, the parents may need to consider increasing the personal property limit on their policy.

There is also another limitation placed on being covered under a parent’s homeowner’s policy – the child and their belongings must return home every 45 days. If a child is staying in a dorm for longer than 45 days, their personal belongings may not be covered under a homeowner’s policy and additional coverage may need to be purchased.

Teenagers that are going away to college and living in off-campus housing or a frat/sorority house will need to have an additional policy purchased as a parent’s homeowner’s policy will not cover personal belongings kept at these locations. An additional policy, such as renter’s insurance, may provide the additional coverage needed to protect these items.

If you are sending a child off to college make sure you have the proper insurance needed to protect personal belongings. As your independent agent, we can help you find and compare policies from different companies that will offer protection for your child’s personal belongings while they are at school.