TD Insurance survey reveals 38% of Canadian renters under 35 are putting their possessions and personal finances at risk
TORONTO, Sept. 6, 2011 – As Canadian post-secondary students unpack their laptops, clothes and other possessions in their dorm rooms this fall, renter’s insurance may be the last thing on their minds as they prepare for lectures and life away from home.
But according to a new survey by TD Insurance, 38% of Canadian renters under the age of 35 are putting their possessions and personal finances at risk because they don’t have renter’s insurance.
“While most students are focused on school supplies and class schedules, they should also make sure they have the right insurance in place to protect their valuables,” says Henry Blumenthal, Vice President & Chief Underwriter, TD Insurance. “Some students argue they don’t have enough valuable possessions to warrant renter’s insurance, but many head to school with smartphones, laptops and expensive textbooks. Coupled with furniture, clothes and other household items, these can quickly add up to thousands of dollars.”
Eleven per cent of Canadians (and 14% of people under 35) assume renter’s insurance is covered under their landlord’s property insurance policies if there is a fire or someone is injured on your property – but this is untrue.
“Even if you’ve already moved in, it’s never too late to invest in renter’s insurance,” says Blumenthal. “With the growing cost of post-secondary education, and the associated expenses, renter’s insurance can cost as little as a couple of movie tickets a month and give you peace of mind in the event that something unexpected happens.”
Blumenthal offers his top five tips to consider when securing renter’s insurance:
RENTERS INSURANCE CHECK LIST:
1. Check if you’re covered under your parents’ policy
Whether you live in a dorm or an apartment off campus, it’s important for everyone to confirm if there are any exclusions from your parents’ policy depending on the student’s age, type of residence, and how long you plan to be away. Coverage could become invalid the moment a student decides not to move to their parents’ home.
2. Look for simple ways to save
Many insurers give discounts to non-smokers or households that are armed with security systems, deadbolt locks and smoke alarms. Purchasing your auto and renter’s insurance with the same insurance provider or through your student or alumni association can often yield attractive discounts. You can also increase your deductible if you want to pay lower premiums.
3. Ensure you’re covered for liability, too
What happens if you throw a party in your home and someone injures themselves? What many students don’t realize is that they may be liable if someone is injured on their property. “If your landlord doesn’t salt the walkway in the winter, that’s his or her negligence. But if you have unsafe conditions in your own living area, you are responsible and could end up paying damages in court,” says Blumenthal.
4. Understand your coverage
According to the survey, 27% of people under 35 are not sure what they are covered for when it comes to their insurance. Make sure you understand and are comfortable with your renter’s insurance deductible (how much you will have to pay if you have to make a claim) and if your policy offers ‘actual cash value’ or ‘replacement cost’ coverage for your belongings. You should also inform your insurer about items that are particularly valuable – like jewellery, computers or instruments – as these may require additional coverage.
5. Take inventory of your belongings
Make a list of all your valuables and be sure to include the date purchased, brand names and serial numbers and keep it in a safe place. It’s worthwhile to take photos or videos of your possessions, too. This will make the process easier if you ever have to make a claim.
About the TD Insurance 2011 State of Insurance Report
TD Insurance commissioned Environics Research Group to conduct a custom online survey of 1,000 Canadian adults. Results were collected between March 5 – 13th, 2011.
About TD Insurance
TD Bank Group’s insurance companies and operations carry on business under the TD Insurance brand. TD Insurance offers a wide range of products to help protect clients from the ‘accidents of life’ including credit protection, life, health, travel, home and auto insurance. With more than three million clients, TD Insurance authorized products and services are available through a network of more than 1,000 TD Canada Trust branches, the Internet and telephone. The TD Insurance brands include TD Insurance Credit Protection and TD Insurance Life and Health, which are the number one provider of critical illness insurance and direct life and health premium origination in Canada. And through its TD Insurance Meloche Monnex and TD Insurance Home and Auto brands, TD Insurance is the largest direct-response insurance group in the country. For more information, visit www.tdinsurance.com.