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Students leaving home with £2K in belongings

Students leaving home with £2K in belongings

Category: Insurance

Updated: 21/09/2016
First Published: 21/09/2016

This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

Students nowadays leave for university with a lot more high-tech gadgets than they used to, resulting in an average £1,896 worth of property which could be dangerously under-protected.

Research by Admiral has revealed that tech and gadgets account for more than a third of the nearly £2,000 worth of goods, yet some could be spending even more on such tech, with a whole 22% of today's students having more than £3,000 in possessions. Some may think this amount is unduly excessive and caused entirely by the high price of modern electronics, but the average worth was £887 in the 1980s when their parents were students, which accounting for inflation is roughly the same value as today's average. The biggest difference is that in the 80s, technology only accounted for £103 of that total value.

Unfortunately, most students don't bother to insure their pricey possessions, leaving them vulnerable to breakage and theft despite research showing that one in seven students (14%) have had something stolen from their accommodation. This is especially surprising considering how much they value some of these belongings.

Survey respondents stated that their laptop was their most treasured item (70%), followed by their mobile phone (56%), watch/jewellery (15%) and car (18%). There have been some interesting fluctuations over the years as to what students have owned and treasured, with the car being the most consistently loved item across the four decades, while the popularity of items such as a TV and stereo have waxed and waned since the 80s.

But even while everyone is mandated to have car insurance, the question remains: why do less than one in three students bother with contents insurance? One unusual answer to this question could be that students may already be covered by their parents' home insurance policy.

Additional research from NFU Mutual has revealed that as many as four in every five new students could already be covered under home insurance policies. Their data shows that 78% of home insurance policies cover student belongings as standard, with some even offering protection of up to £7,500 per student, easily covering the average of £2,000. It might however be too optimistic to think that all students lacking their own contents policy have diligently checked their parents' terms of insurance to find out if they're covered, which is why it doesn't hurt to check.

What next?

If you're a new student without contents insurance, first check your parents' home insurance to see if you're already covered. If you find that it doesn't cover your possessions, think about how devastated you'd be to find yourself without your laptop and with no compensation to help you get a replacement - check out our guide to see what contents insurance has to offer. Then compare contents insurance providers to see if there's a decent deal available that's worth the extra monthly cost and peace of mind.

If you're a parent worried about your child's possessions, and can't persuade them to get their own contents insurance, consider looking into home insurance policies that also cover student possessions, and see how they compare to your current policy.

Disclaimer: Information is correct as of the date of publication (shown at the top of this article). Any products featured may be withdrawn by their provider or changed at any time.