When young adults head off to college investing in things like computers, textbooks, and dorm furniture are usually at the top of their shopping lists. But it’s important not to overlook the essential things like insurance – you know, what people don’t like to pay for but are often required or strongly encouraged to keep you and your property protected. (Welcome to adulthood).

  1. Health Insurance

With students entering the next chapter of their lives, we put together a list of five essential types of insurance that college students and young adults need. 

Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, children can remain on their parent’s health insurance policy as dependents until the age of 26. However, if a student attends a college or university out of state, it may be difficult to find local in-network coverage. In that case, options may be to seek coverage through the health insurance marketplace, or purchase a health insurance policy if offered by their school. These are often more affordable than private insurance and is considered a school expense, so could be covered by student loans to help with premiums. 

2. Renters Insurance

If a student will be living in on-campus housing, their belongings should still be covered under the parent’s homeowners policy, yet this change should be confirmed with the insurer. However, coverage is limited to about 10 percent of the total insured value, so may only provide a few thousand dollars of coverage. 

If the student is moving to off-campus housing that is not provided by the school, renters insurance should be purchased to provide coverage for their personal property, as they would no longer be covered under their parent’s homeowners policy. Renters insurance is very affordable, costing around $20-$30 or less a month. The policy can cover computers, TVs, and other electronics with typical policies offering up to $100,000 in coverage for item damage as well as personal liability.

3. Car Insurance

If the student will be taking a car with them to college, car insurance is a must. They should be able to remain on the family policy, but if heading out of state, let the insurance company know. It may affect the rate, but is important to know to ensure the student is covered. Many insurance companies offer good student discounts, so keeping their grades up will help keep costs down.

4. Identity Theft Insurance

College students are popular targets of identity theft because of their love of sharing information on social media, a lack of properly disposing of sensitive information, and not using effective passwords for online accounts.Identity theft protection plans typically include credit monitoring, scanning for threats, and assistance with recovery efforts, although they may have a cap on limitations. A parent’s homeowner’s insurance policy may also include identity theft coverage or allow for the purchase of a rider for fraud protection, so check with your insurer before purchasing a secondary policy.

5. Electronics Insurance

Although most electronics items will be covered under a family’s home insurance policy for students living in dorms, or under a renters insurance policy for students in off-campus housing, it may still make sense to purchase an electronics insurance policy. That’s because deductibles for home and renters policies are often so high that it’s not worth filing a claim. Let’s say your smartphone is stolen that’s only worth $250, but the insurance deductible is $500. You wouldn’t be able to get any reimbursement from your insurance company in this example. By purchasing protection plans for your electronics, you can insure them against theft, damage or loss, generally with no or a very minimal deductible. Such plans typically have low costs. 

So if you’re heading off to college, it’s a good idea to understand what insurance policies you need to keep you and your property protected. As local insurance advisors with partnerships with dozens of the top insurance companies, we work with our customers to find them the right policy for the right price. Contact us today for a free quote or for any questions you may have.