Student Contents Insurance: A Mini Guide

What is student contents insurance? What does it cover? Is it necessary? Just a few of the questions that we answer in this useful guide.

As a student, there are many things you need to think about. Finding student accommodation is usually high on the list. Deciding between student halls or a private student house is also a common dilemma, especially for first year students.

Student contents insurance? The chances are this hasn’t been prominent in your thoughts. You can always organise it later. You’ll never need it. It’s not that important anyway. Such a thought process isn’t unusual and we understand why you might have reached such a conclusion. There’s so much to think about and it’s all more exciting than considering your belongings and arranging insurance.

But trust us on this one: such things shouldn’t be overlooked, and insurance and its importance shouldn’t be underestimated. The average student room contains contents worth more than £3,000 and, whilst you might assume that the landlord has everything covered, the chances are you’re mistaken. Your landlord should have buildings insurance in place, but when it comes to contents, the onus is always on you.

Bringing precious items and valuables to university? You can’t afford not to have student contents insurance.

What does student contents insurance cover?

Student contents insurance should protect all your treasured items. Consider clothes, books, electronic gadgets and devices, musical instruments and more – such things must be safeguarded. Most insurers have a maximum value limit for insured items so if you need cover for bikes, laptops and other high-cost contents, be sure to check the small print. 

How much does student contents insurance cost?

Expect insurance to cost between £60 and £90 per year, depending on your precise needs. You get what you pay for, it’s true, but generally speaking, student contents insurance should not cost more than £100. Different factors can affect the price, including the area in which you live, how many people you share with and what security measures the landlord has put in place. Do a little research and you can make savings.

How can I reduce the cost of student contents insurance?

Finances are tight for those starting out as students, but there are simple steps that can help to keep costs down. Think about paying up front rather than relying on monthly instalments as this is cheaper, increase your excess, understand what your contents are worth and only insure what you need. Our top tip for those on a budget is to shop around. It might save time, but don’t just accept the first quote.

Am I not covered on my parents’ home insurance policy?

This can be an option, but don’t assume that cover is in place when leaving home for the first time. It’s a common assumption and some of your new-found friends will be covered under parents’ policies. But this isn’t automatic, arrangements will need to be made and additional costs incurred. Check it out– especially if your parents are willing to increase their excess and cover the costs – but don’t take it for granted and be sure all parties read the small print. 

How do I get started?

Laptop on desk

You should organise this before making the move, but if you haven’t got round to it, don’t panic! Cover can be set up quickly, and the process is simple. Talk to friends, ask around and use the internet to research options, and compare quotes and cover levels.

Price comparison websites are useful in evaluating insurance companies so use all the resources available. You should be able to organise it all online, but if there’s something you don’t understand, don’t be afraid to do it over the phone.

But I don’t understand all the jargon

This can be a minefield, but do some research and all should become clear. You need to understand excess (how much you will have to pay when making a claim) and the difference between compulsory and voluntary (what you must pay and the extra you can choose to pay, bearing in mind this will affect the price of your premium). Exclusions are important as these are items that are not covered, whilst no claims discounts (the longer you go without making a claim, the cheaper your premium will be) and high-value items (expensive goods that require additional cover) are also  important terms to understand.

Which insurance provider should I choose?

 You should choose the insurance provider that best suits your needs. Don’t base your decision on the cost alone, although price is an important consideration. Check online reviews – does the provider have a good reputation? Is the level of cover sufficient? How easy (or otherwise) is it to make a claim? Is the policy tailored for students? There are lots of providers out there, so think it through and shop around.

Do I really need student contents insurance?

Yes, yes and yes again! It isn’t exciting and there is much to think about when starting out as a student. But this is one that mustn’t be overlooked, and insurance and its importance should never be underestimated.

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Student room with computer and other belongings