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College students and insurance needs

September 26, 2014

Books, classes, cafeteria food and midterms—those are a few things on the minds of students heading off to college for the first time. It can be a daunting experience packing up your belongings and trekking to your new home for the next four years, which is why many college students don't give insurance a second thought when leaving home.

College students should think about their insurance needs.

But insurance needs can change when young adults are attending college, according to Ken Kobylowski, commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance. That's why Kobylowski is asking students to make sure they have the right type of property, automobile and health insurance coverage while working toward their degrees.

“Insurance plans may be far from most students' and parents' minds as they finalize their to-do list and start to pack for college,” Kobylowski told the Atlantic Highlands Herald. “However, college students should review their insurance coverage needs and make any needed changes before they start school.”

Automobile insurance for college students

If you think most college kids don't need to worry about auto insurance because the majority don't have cars, think again. Seven in 10 college students keep their automobiles at school, according to the Independent Insurance Agents of America.

While some students buy their own cars to bring to school, many others are borrowing one of their parent's vehicles. According to College Parents of America, the impact of a student bringing a family car to school could carry various degrees of fiscal weight when looking at monthly insurance premiums. One factor that could lower or raise a monthly premium is based on where the student is going to school. Coverage could go up or drop, according to College Parents of America. In some cases, students earning stellar grades could have their premiums reduced regardless of where the car is stationed.

But no matter where the student is taking the car, College Parents of America urges families to tell their insurance agents where their students are keeping their cars. Failure to tell your carrier where a car is being kept could threaten any ensuing claims after an accident.

Meanwhile, if your child is away at school and has not brought a family car, it's a good idea to talk to your insurance agent to see if you can get a premium reduction. This is possible now that your child isn't a regular user of the automobile, and teenage drivers are often some of the most costly drivers to insure. College Parents of America reported families could save hundreds of dollars per year on insurance premiums when a child goes away to school.

Families interested in acquiring a new automobile insurance policy should consider the affordable auto insurance options offered by SelectQuote Auto & Home. SelectQuote provides comparison shopping from a dozen of the nation's premier carriers. It's fast, easy and could save you a bundle through a customized insurance plan.

Students might want to consider renter's insurance

As a growing number of students bring expensive electronics to dorm rooms and off-campus living sites, theft has risen in college cities across the country. The Independent Insurance Agents of America estimates roughly 100,000 property crimes occur on campuses every year.

If students loses valued goods due to a fire or theft, their parents' homeowners policies may not cover the items, which is why it might be a good idea to get renter's insurance. Renter's insurance premiums can cost as little as $15 per month, depending on the value of possessions, location and size of the rental unit, according to the Atlantic Highlands Herald.

However, College Parents of America reported students living in college housing typically receive some sort of reimbursement through their parents' policies if they were to lose valued goods.