You’ve finally lived the dream and arrived at college or university. Freshers’ week is an uncomfortably dim and distant memory. And now it’s time to get down to some of that work you’d heard talk about.
Like any self-respecting student in this day and age, all your notes, the first drafts and the final copy of the latest essay or tutorial paper you’ve written is safely stored on your laptop or computer back at your digs or in your halls of residence.
But is it?
Your worst nightmare is about to come true if that very laptop or computer is stolen or ruined beyond repair when a housemate spills their pint of beer over it.
Students’ contents insurance
If all your valuable hard work goes missing because of a break-in, you might think about asking your landlord if his insurance covers such a theft from the accommodation you are renting from him or her.
You’re likely to get very short shrift, since your landlord has no responsibility for insuring your belongings and possessions – that is down to you alone.
For that, you need your own students’ contents insurance. You might want to think of it as a scaled-down or lightweight version of the home contents insurance your parents almost certainly have for the entire contents of their house back at home.
What does students’ contents insurance cover?
In your case the cover needs to be considerably smaller in scope – probably enough for the contents you’ve taken away with you to college or university and keep in your rented room there.
But your contents insurance covers against the same risks of loss, theft or damage – from minor spills and breakages, right up to the whole building burning down.
To calculate how much cover you need – since the total sum insured is also going to determine the insurance premiums you pay – just go through all your possessions to put a value on them. That includes not just your computer, but all the other electronic devices and gadgets you might have, together with items such as sound systems, clothes, jewellery, sports equipment, and your own (not the landlord’s) furniture and kitchen equipment.
When arranging your insurance, you’ll notice that there is something called an “excess” on any successful claim you make for theft, loss or damage of your possessions. This is the first part of any claim you make – so if the excess is £50, for example, and you are claiming £100, you need to pay the first £50 as your contribution to the loss.
If you agree to voluntarily increase this amount of excess (so you agree to pay the first £100 of any successful claim) you are effectively relieving the insurer of some of the risk, so expect your premiums to be reduced as a result. If you do need to make a claim, though, remember that this will result in your having to pay more from your own pocket.
For more information about insuring the contents of your room or rooms whilst you are away at college or university, visit our website and browse the pages you find there – we can’t promise to replace all the hard work and effort that went into writing your latest contributions to academia, but we can help to make sure that the computer on which you wrote it – along with all your other belongings – is safely protected.