Renter’s insurance is something all college students should consider, whether you live in a dorm, rent an apartment, or rent part of a house. Many students have the mistaken belief that their landlord’s homeowner’s insurance will cover the loss of their belongings if they are stolen or damaged. But your landlord only gets compensation for structural damage to the building or the apartment. If you experience a flood, fire, or burglary and are not covered by renter’s insurance, you won’t receive any compensation for your losses. You will have to start from scratch, replacing your iPod, laptop, books, television, clothing, and other possessions in your apartment.
Even if your personal property is covered under your student renter’s insurance policy, going through a disaster like a fire or burglary can be very stressful. Luckily, there are some basic preventive measures you can take to lower your chances of experiencing damages or theft. These things will generally lower your insurance premiums as well!
There are numerous ways to lower your chances of having your property stolen or damaged. The neighborhood in which you rent can make a difference in the premium, so consider several things before signing a lease.
Find an apartment or house with features like an alarm system, deadbolt door locks, motion sensitive outdoor lights, and a parking lot rather than on-street parking.
Stay away from the well-known student apartment complexes that are famous for their great parties. Places where there are lots of visitors frequently can make you more vulnerable to theft.
If you have the option, choose an apartment that is not on the ground floor to minimize your risk of burglary.
It may sound strange, but live with one to three roommates. If you have more, you could get an inordinate amount of foot traffic in and out every day. Having roommates is a good idea for safety reasons, but living in a crowd can raise your vulnerability to not only theft, but also property damages of various kinds.
Here are some ways to protect yourself and your belongings at home and on campus.
Always lock up your bicycle, even if it’s in your garage.
Ways to stay safe – Be aware of your belongings and surroundings, at home as well as on campus.
Never leave a candle or incense unattended.
Install and use a lock on your bedroom door.
If you have any small valuables like jewelry, or if you have a passport, invest in a small, fireproof safe to store them in, or leave them at your parents’ home.
With a little common sense, you can start off the semester with confidence that your studies will be the most important concern you have. It helps a lot to have the peace of mind to know that your possessions are protected by student renter’s insurance.