Two fifths of students not insured

With a record number of students due to start university in the coming months, there are concerns that many students do not have contents insurance.

A report from M&S Bank, based on YouGov figures, states that 2 in 5 students do not have a policy for their personal belongings. In 2014, the average student took £2,132 worth of possessions with them, while 9% took belongings totalling more than £4,000.

The most popular items to take to university were:

  • mobile phone/smartphone (92%)
  • laptop (89%)
  • kitchen appliances (58%).

It is not uncommon for students to be the victims of crime, with the figures showing that 20% of students are victims while studying. The most common form of crime is theft, with an average of £382 worth being taken.

The Association of British Insurers (ABI) has issued a 5 step guide to help students make sure their possessions are looked after:

  1. Check your parents current policy as well as the university’s policy to identify any gaps in cover
  2. Some student bank accounts offer insurance products as part of the package
  3. The insurance market is competitive so make sure to shop around for the best deal
  4. Establish the value of your possessions so that any policy you do get will provide adequate cover
  5. Take safety precautions such as ensuring your room is always locked

Paul Stokes, head of products at M&S Bank, said:

“Heading off to university is an exciting time for any student. In all the excitement of planning what you’ll need, where you’re going to live – which is often away from home for the first time – and your social diary for freshers’ week, insurance isn’t always front of mind.”

Laura Hughes, policy advisor for general insurance at the ABI, said:

“Students often aren’t aware that the areas where they live may be targeted by criminals who know that student houses can contain high value belongings. Make sure you have 1 less thing to worry about by arranging insurance cover to protect your possessions.”