AAA answers five common questions about renter’s insurance

Phoenix, AZ -- As the new semester nears, parents are prepping new undergrads for life away from home. With dorm rooms filled with laptops, televisions and gaming systems, parents and students need to look at ways to protect their belongings.

“What happens if your student’s laptop is stolen from your car? Or what if their bike is stolen from off-campus housing?” said Brad Oltmans, vice president of insurance for AAA Arizona. “These are among the most common questions our insurance experts field from parents sending their teens off to college for the first time.”

Before move-in day arrives, AAA Insurance experts are issuing a pop quiz for parents:

Is my student covered under my homeowner’s policy while they’re away at school? Students whose parents’ address is their primary residence may be covered under their parents’ homeowner’s policy, even when they’re away at school.

However, parents should still consider a renter’s policy, which can avoid the need to place a claim on a homeowner’s policies. A renter’s insurance policy generally costs about $150 a year and can cover items in dorm rooms, apartments and cars if they get stolen. Even if a student is covered by Mom and Dad’s homeowner insurance, making a claim on a renter’s policy will be much less expensive for everyone in the long run.

Can my student and their roommate share a policy? This depends on the type of policy you have, but it is generally easier to have separate policies. By the time teens go off to college, many have amassed a collection of expensive technology, entertainment equipment and other valuable items. It’s important to make sure their property is protected.

Is there a difference in coverage for a dorm room versus an off-campus apartment? In most cases there isn’t a difference in coverage, as the policies protect personal belongings and provide liability coverage for the dwelling.

If someone breaks into my students car and steals their laptop, is that a car insurance claim or home/renter’s? In most cases, it will be covered on renter’s or homeowner’s insurance. Most auto policies specifically exclude personal property from being covered for a theft.

What are items that everyone would assume is covered, but actually aren’t? Any personal belongings that increase in value such as jewelry, watches, collectibles, antiques and firearms. Most policies have limitations on how much coverage you have, and in most cases, additional coverage is needed for this items.

“When it comes to any insurance policy, it’s important to know what is covered and what is not,” Oltmans said.

AAA Insurance is a go-to source for insurance information. For more information, visit   back...
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