Parents’ policies, renter’s insurance provide options

Tyrel Linkhorn

Renter’s insurance gives tenants protection from loss, damage and theft, as well as liability protection – and many Kent State students admit they know little to nothing about it.

Per the Residence Services housing contract, the university “will not be responsible for any loss of or damage to the personal property of the student from any cause, nor will the university and the Department of Residence Services assume responsibility for any injury or damages, personal or property, while the student is a resident.”

Carol Crimi, senior staff attorney from Student Legal Services, said while landlords must have liability and property insurance for their own protection, those policies don’t cover the tenants.

The only exceptions, Crimi said, are problems arising from a landlord’s negligence to provide the healthy, safe living environment by which they are required.

“Anything that’s beyond the control of the building is the responsibility of the tenant,” said Phil Siegel, apartment manager at Eagles Landing.

Like many other student housing providers, including Eagles Landing and Holly Park (according to their respective apartment managers), Residence Services does not require residents to carry insurance; it only recommends it as part of the lease agreement.

Crimi said many homeowners’ policies include provisions for students living away from the home. Because every policy is different, she said, students should contact their parent’s agent to see if they are covered under the policy.

Siegel and Debby Wells, property manager of Holly Park, both said they recommend students check to see if they are covered on their parents’ policies.

Freshman finance major Jeremy Brauning is covered by his parents’ policy.

“It’s very important,” he said. “Especially in college because you never know what could happen.”

In addition to the property protection, Brauning said he believed the medical liability coverage to be extremely important considering the costs of heath care today.

For students not already covered, Crimi said $20,000 to $30,000 of coverage can be purchased for about $150 to $200 per year.

Crimi also stressed the importance of keeping a record of value. She suggested keeping receipts and taking photographs of important items.

“Insurance companies need some record of proof on what you lost,” she said.

Contact student finance reporter Tyrel Linkhorn at [email protected].