Safety Uncategorized

Have a Beautiful Room at College? Protect It!

August 14, 2014
Protecting All Your Stuff at College in 3 Steps!

{image via @dormify}

Pinterest has opened my eyes to a world where it is possible to have a gorgeous residence hall room. Who cares if cinderblock walls are your background, there are some seriously design savvy dorm rooms out there just waiting to be recreated. Your residence hall room is, afterall, your home for the next nine or so months – just because it’s small doesn’t mean you can’t maximize your space and make a room you and your roommate will love!

Dormify, Wayfair and the like make it possible to have a gorgeous room for slightly less than a fortune, too.  Even with budget finds, the stuff you bring to your residence hall room adds up. What if the boys down the hall set off the building sprinkler system while playing catch inside? How would you replace all your stuff?

Luckily, there are things you can do to prevent theft and damage to your belongings as well as ways to protect yourself financially. A little bit of common sense, checking your parents homeowners insurance coverage and considering renters insurance are all ways to help keep your residence hall beautiful and your school supplies and clothes safe.

Be Smart About Your Stuff

Unfortunately, having a beautifully detailed residence hall room with a door that’s always open is basically an advertisement for getting robbed. A little bit of caution can go a long way in protecting your stuff. Always lock your door and make sure your roommate does too. It’s tempting to keep your door open on a friendly hallway, but you never know who’s been let into the building. Never leave your belongings unattended, whether it’s in the hallway lounge or the library. Consider engraving your big ticket items – like your TV, laptop and bike – so they can be identified more easily, and also consider a lock for laptop and bike.

Talk to Your Parents About Homeowners Insurance

Insurance can help you replace your belongings if they are damaged or stolen. If your parents have homeowners insurance you may get coverage under that policy and won’t require any additional coverage. Talk with your parents to see if you qualify under their specific policy. Many homeowners policies will only cover full-time students under the age of 24 who live on campus. If you drop down to part-time or get an off-campus apartment, you may not be covered. Don’t forget to talk with your parents about their deductible and whether a claim on your bike at school could affect their premium. Many homeowners policies feature $500 or $1,000 deductibles, which may be too high to replace your bedding or tablet.

Consider Renters Insurance

A big deterrent for college students when considering renters insurance is cost. Another bill on top of everything college seems like too much. What most students and their families don’t realize is that you can get good coverage for your belongings for less than the price of a pizza per month. Your daily coffee run adds up to much more per month than the cost of renters insurance! And unlike coffee or pizza, renters insurance can help replace your belongings if they are stolen or damaged by a covered event.

When searching for a renters insurance plan, be sure to look for certain features suited to college life. Consider both personal property protection as well as personal liability protection. A plan with liability coverage can help protect you financially if someone injures themselves in your residence or if you unintentionally cause damage to your residence. Look for plans with replacement cost, good coverage for your electronics, and if you will be traveling throughout the semester, consider a plan with worldwide coverage.

Renters insurance doesn’t make sense for everyone, especially if you get good coverage through your parents homeowners insurance. You may not have much to replace or you may be able to afford to replace your things. Taking an inventory of your belongings (preferably before you head to school ;)) can help you decided whether renters insurance makes sense for your lifestyle and budget. Wondering how much your stuff is worth? Estimate it with this handy Renters Calculator tool!

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Dave Gardner says:

As an RA we always had to go through rooms before students moved in and after they checked out, so having a room taken care of and using the right materials to decorate your abode to give your personality a chance to shine, while not being billed at the end was always important!