Now It’s Time to Graduate to Your Insurance!
It’s a rite of passage for college students to don cap and gowns and march across the stage for graduation ceremonies- in fact, according to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), almost 1.8 million students will graduate with a bachelor’s degree in 2013. As that 1.8 million transition from undergraduates to careers, pursuing advanced degrees, or returning to mom and dad’s house, they must understand how walking across the stage may have changed their insurance needs.
While every individual has unique needs, here are a few insurance coverage options that all college grads should consider and evaluate their condition for:
- Auto insurance – Whether owned or leased, a shiny new car holds appeal for newly employed college grads. Auto insurance helps cope with the expenses of accidents, vandalism, or theft. A lender or leasing company that finances the vehicle will require auto insurance. Car accidents can create significant liabilities for a driver, so the liability portion of auto coverage helps protect the bank account. Plus, auto insurance covers many legal expenses if a driver is sued. If a graduate who already owns a car is moving, where they keep and register the vehicle, especially from one state to another, can impact coverage. It’s essential to inform your Lock Insurance agent about these moves to ensure your current coverage will apply or if you need a new policy.
- Homeowners or renters insurance – College grads starting may not own a home yet but may rent an apartment or a house. To make sure your possessions are protected, renters insurance offers comprehensive coverage, whether at home or traveling. Liability insurance included in renters and homeowners coverage also helps protect against the risk of being sued. There usually are limitations on renters coverage within a group house—a typical post-graduate arrangement—so it is essential to understand the details of a policy.
- Umbrella policy – An umbrella policy can provide another level of protection. For example, suppose you’re renting an apartment and accidentally start a cooking fire that burns down the building and destroys the personal property of other residents. In that case, the coverage limit on your renter’s policy may not be enough to cover the damage, so that an umbrella policy could provide additional coverage.
- Life insurance – New grads may find a job with an employer that offers group-term life insurance coverage. However, those with children may find it worthwhile to buy additional term life insurance or permanent life insurance, which builds cash value over time.
As a new college grad, you may want to lean financially on your parents’ insurance coverage as long as possible. While that may make sense, it’s not always viable, depending on your circumstances. For instance, auto insurance companies will require an owner or lessee of a car to carry their coverage. Parents of new graduates should also take this time to review their insurance portfolios, as there may be opportunities to reduce their premiums if a child moves into their place or gets their car.