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What is student content insurance?

Going away to university could mean you’ll be staying in either student halls, or shared accommodation. 

Much like tenants insurance, students content insurance protects your contents whilst you’re living in accommodation, think laptop, clothes, furniture, and bikes (some insurers will also include gadgets)

Student content insurance, will protect your belongings in the event of something happening to your stuff. It gives you the peace of mind knowing that it will be replaced, saving money on what can be a costly process. 

There are many factors to consider, so it’s a good idea to compare different student house insurance policies, to see what each insurer can offer you, and the extent to which you will be covered. 

What is my landlord responsible for?

Home insurance will cover you if something happens to your place of living or its contents. 

There are two types of cover, buildings insurance and contents insurance.

Buildings insurance

Buildings insurance covers the structure of the property. The outside details, like the walls, roof. This is the area that your landlord should take care of to protect their house or apartment.

Contents insurance

Your main area of concern will be contents insurance, as this covers the possessions inside the home.

Contents insurance isn’t the responsibility of the landlord. However, they might offer you a basic level of cover, but you shouldn’t rely on this solely to protect your items. Compare different policies to find a policy that covers all of the valuables you.

This takes into consideration situations, such as a break in, damage to property, or fire or water damage. In the event that something does happen, without insurance, there’s only so much you might be able to afford to replace. 

What will student content insurance cover?

As a student, your contents insurance can cover more or less everything in your home up to an agreed limit. You might be required to list each item separately if they exceed a certain amount.

The standard items you might want to cover on you home insurance policy include:

  • Clothes and towels

  • Books, CDs, DVDs and digital media

  • Gadgets and electronics

  • Cutlery and crockery

  • Jewellery (below a certain value)

  • Furniture, curtains and bedding

  • Vases, antiques and ornaments

  • Bikes (but sometimes only when they stay on the premises)

However, not all insurance providers cover you for the above items in their standard package. Some will require you buy additional insurance cover,  this could also include additional cover for accidental damage.

Why should I get student contents insurance?

Student accommodation can often be a target for burglaries and theft. 

If you left home and your parents already had contents insurance, don’t assume that you will also be covered under your parent’s insurance policy.

It’s better to be safe than sorry

If an accident happens, then personal belongings are at risk of being damaged. Having home contents insurance will pay out to help you replace the items. This would also be the case if you were an unfortunate victim of burglary. You can have items, such as your TV, or furniture replaced. 

Some items you take out of the home will not always be insured once they leave the home. So if you damaged your mobile phone or bicycle or had them stolen outside of the house then your home insurance provider may not cover it unless you have additional cover. 

Limitations of student contents insurance/tenants insurance

Accidental damage home insurance is usually an extra you have to pay for with your tenants home insurance. This covers your items against accidents like dropping your laptop on the floor or damaging furnishings like sofas or curtains. 

Some insurers won’t offer tenants insurance if the flat or house they live in came furnished by the landlord.

In most cases you will need personal possessions cover to insure items outside of the home.

Read our guides to mobile phone insurance and on bicycle insurance to learn more about getting separate cover for items you regularly take out of the house.

Contents insurance if you live in a flat/house share

Some students will opt for a flat share, either for the company or the reduction in living costs. 

Insurance companies will see home shares as a bigger risk to insure. The more people living together, the more risk of accidental damage or a door being left unlocked, so you might find it harder to get appropriate cover.

Taking out joint cover with your housemates however, could lower the costs of contents insurance, but would involve having an agreement on payments and responsibility. Shop around, compare and find the cheapest, most relevant policy for you and your housemates.

Uswitch top tips

Compare policies - student contents insurance can prove to be very useful, so make sure you shop around and compare insurance policies, to make sure you’re getting the best deal. 

Terms and conditions - always read the terms and conditions of the policy to make sure you’ll be getting sufficient cover

Excess - know what your excess is (how much you will have to pay to make a claim). It won’t be worth paying an excess of £200 for an item that costs £250. 

Don’t over insure - don’t add items that could be easily replaced, without affecting your premiums

Additional cover - get additional coverage if you know you have expensive items in the home that are at risk of theft of damage

Key cover - consider key cover as this this can cover the cost of lost keys or a locksmith. Don’t make assumptions - Don’t assume you are covered under your parents home insurance policy

Security systems - if you or your landlord have very good security systems in place, then make sure you mention this when you are getting a home insurance quote. This could reduce the cost of your cover.

Tuition fee insurance cover - this is something to consider as it can cover you for tuition fees, or rent cover protection if you become ill or have to leave your course early. In some instances it can also cover exam resits. 

How To Make A Claim On Student Contents Insurance

If you feel you need to make a claim once you’ve taken out your insurance, it’s important to contact your provider as soon as possible to make an insurance claim. 

Keep your policy number and details of your insurance in a safe and accessible place, as that is likely to be the first information that will be asked of you.

Make sure you have as much evidence as possible so that you’re prepared for a quicker process and smoother claim. This could include receipts, photographs or police reports. 

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