Recent statistics show that one in three university students will be a victim of crime at some point. In 2014 it was reported that the average student took more than £4,500 worth of possessions to university with them, with valuable and desirable gadgets, such as laptops, smartphones, tablets, TVs and games consoles, constituting nearly £3,000 of that amount. An April 2015 survey by eBay put the total saleable value of the average student’s possessions at over £6,000.
Be aware of risks
Looking at those figures it’s hardly surprising that student households are a tempting prospect for thieves, especially when one considers that in the average shared student house the property values could be multiplied four to six times. That makes the homes rich pickings for burglars, especially as students are usually young, inexperienced and often overly trusting. Often out at night, leaving their homes vulnerable, they can be prone to oversights such as forgetting to lock doors, and student house parties are ideal situations for an opportunist thief. Therefore, it’s important for students to be aware of the risks they face and to take appropriate precautions. However, it’s just as essential to ensure that items are covered by comprehensive tenant’s contents insurance.
Choosing your policy
The simplest and most cost-efficient approach may be to extend the family home insurance to cover a student’s belongings during term time. It’s not safe to assume that this is automatically the case and if the cover is agreed with the insurer there could well be restrictions and exclusions. Typically, this add-on cover will only include items brought from home and the student must live at home during the holidays. In addition, some off-the-peg policies will not cover items kept in a shared space (e.g. the communal lounge of a student home), items lost or damaged when out, or vulnerable items like phones, bikes and musical instruments.
The best approach is to find a broker specialising in student tenant insurance so that you can get a policy tailored specifically to your needs. Make sure you insure all the items you need covered and don’t pay for cover you don’t need. At the same time, don’t be tempted to underinsure, as if you value your items at less than their actual worth you’ll lose out if you do need to claim.
Alan Boswell Group can review any existing policies as well as finding you the best value and most appropriate student contents insurance for all your valued items. You can get a quote online now by clicking here or call us for more details on 01603 218000