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Will your college student's valuables be protected at school? Ask William M. Sparks Insurance Agency Lutherville - Timonium MDAs your college student heads back to campus this fall with a computer, cell phone,  tablet, headset and other valuable items in tow, perhaps you have already considered what might happen if these items were vandalized, damaged by fire or perhaps even stolen.  Would your homeowners policy cover such a loss, allowing replacement of your student's possessions while away at college?  In fact, you can protect your student's valuables against these kinds of losses through the right insurance. If you plan ahead, you can avoid the risks of being caught unaware about your student's insurance coverage.

Do You Need Additional Insurance Coverage?

A little advanced planning can often save the day. You'll want to sit down with your child and list everything that will be moved to college. This will then allow you to put a value on each item. When you have that information documented, then contact your insurance agent to confirm your homeowners policy coverage including any coverage limitations.  When you have determined the maximum coverage limit available for your student, then compare it to the total value of your child's belongings. If the total value exceeds the maximum coverage, you’ll want to know it now so that you can increase your coverage before there is a need to file a claim.

On Campus or Off? Homeowners or Renters Insurance?

Your agent will ask whether your child will be living in an off-campus apartment or on campus. Most homeowners insurance policies will cover your student's personal property in a campus dormitory up to the limits of your policy.  However, this is typically not so if your child is living off-campus.  If that is the case, then renters insurance is the coverage you will need. 

Don’t Forget an Inventory

Regardless of whether homeowners insurance or renters insurance will apply, it is critical to have an inventory of all items in advance. A list of items the student is taking to college will be helpful of their property is stolen or damaged. Be sure to include the serial numbers as well as model, make and brand of each item along with a description and a photographic record (especially for items that are unique). Along with the inventory, keep receipts for expensive items to help establish value in case you must file a claim.  Furthermore, it's important to advise your child about taking normal precautions to protect their belongings while they are away at school.

Attending to insurance coverage details and making good preparations before your teenager leaves for college will result in a smoother transition for both of you. For your own peace of mind, the key is to not assume you have adequate insurance coverage for your student's possessions at school without checking with your agent to be aware of all insurance options.

Here at the William M. Sparks Insurance Agency in Lutherville – Timonium MD, we help parents and students to sort through their insurance options when it comes time to head off to college; and we can answer your questions and help you, too.  Feel free to contact us at your convenience for a no-obligation review of your homeowners insurance policy and a discussion of what might be your best course of action to protect your child's belongings.

Friday, 09 August 2019 18:45

college and nsuranceIs your student off to college this semester? Have you done an insurance review?

Can you believe that summer is coming to an end and it’s now back-to-school time once again? It’s the time of year when we notice more than ever the way our children are growing and how their lives are changing. So this makes it the perfect time of year to also evaluate your family’s auto insurance and homeowners insurance coverage. Is this the year when your teen goes to college? Will your son or daughter get a drivers license? Will you be replacing your vehicle to make room for school carpooling? Will you be adding an addition to your home to accommodate space for home schooling? Keep your children safe in the new school year— review your car and home insurance coverage this fall.

Car Insurance

  • Before you decide on that new vehicle, check with your insurance agent to see how its purchase will affect your auto insurance rates. Also, you’ll want to discuss how carpooling impacts your coverage as well.
  • Teen drivers can be expensive to insure, but don’t forget to check for a student discount. Typically, getting the discount requires that your child carry a good grade-point average, so you’ll need the details on that as well. In addition, if your teen passes a driver safety course, you might qualify for reduced car insurance rates.
  • If your child in college, it’s possible that you might receive a further discount, provided they meet the requirements – typically attending school outside of a specific distance from home without a vehicle while away.   Again, your insurance agent will know the details.

Home Insurance

  • Perhaps home schooling is your plan, and you know you’ll need to expand your home to accommodate the space. There are many insurance questions to resolve before you move forward. For example, if your home is expanded and the property value increases, then how will this affect your homeowners insurance cost. Not to be forgotten, also, is the need for sufficient liability coverage if your home schooling will include others beyond your immediate family.
  • If your college-bound teen will be living on campus, then most of his or her belongings will typically be covered – at least in part – by your homeowners insurance policy. This includes all those expensive items like a laptop, TV, bike, smartphone and other electronics, among others. 
  • If your college student will be living off campus while away at school, then it is likely that your homeowners insurance will not cover, and renters insurance will then be your answer. Renters insurance is typically very affordable, and a discussion with your insurance agent will let you know your options.

Home and Auto Insurance Tip

The start of another new school year can be an exciting time for your family. Giving yourself the peace of mind knowing that you’ve got the right insurance coverage can help you protect your assets as you invest in your child’s future. The first step to doing so is to meet with your insurance agent who can help you explore your options.

The William M. Sparks Insurance Agency located in Lutherville / Timonium, MD, is a full-service insurance agency offering auto/car insurance, homeowners insurance, business/commercial insurance and life insurance to all of Maryland (MD), Virginia (VA) and Pennsylvania (PA) since 1981. Our experienced insurance agents welcome your inquiries and are glad to discuss your coverage needs at any time.


Monday, 08 August 2016 21:26

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