Coming home for the holidays when you’re a student really is the most wonderful time of year. When your laundry gets properly laundered and (more importantly) you get properly fed. And when you’re a student, you can usually get away with travelling light and leaving all your stuff at your term time digs – afterall, it’ll be safe as houses there won’t it?
In the UK, a burglary happens every forty seconds and research shows that students are more likely to be victims of property crime than any other group. And it makes sense, because almost 70% of all student accommodation is empty over the holiday period – an open invitation to burglars.
Of course, there are some places that are more ‘at risk’ of break-ins than others – we’re looking at you, London, Greater Manchester, Wolverhampton, Leeds and Birmingham. Large university towns and cities are naturally more heavily populated and give rise to more criminal opportunities – and burglary tends to be an opportunistic crime. Typically, students live in areas with crime rates that are two and half times greater than the national average and one in three students will be a victim of crime.
As a student, you might think you haven’t got anything worth stealing and although you may feel penniless at times, you’re actually better off than you realise. The average student brings more than £4,000 worth of stuff to university – that’s quite a lot to cram into one room and a shared kitchen and living room. Think laptops, mobile phones, speakers, tablets – it all adds up and if was all stolen tomorrow, could you afford to replace it?
Which is why it’s important to do two things:
Firstly, insure your belongings with contents insurance. It’s worth checking if your belongings are covered by your parents existing home insurance policy. This could provide a basic level of cover for your contents. Your parents may be able to extend their policy to cover your belongings while you are away from the home for an additional cost. Alternatively you could purchase your own specific cover which may offer you an additional level of protection.
Secondly, make your student home as secure as possible – here are some top tips:
- If you have a burglar alarm – use it (that’s what it’s there for)
- Make sure doors and windows are locked and secure
- Don’t leave valuables in sight, keep them hidden and if you can take them home for the holidays then do so
- Invest in some timers so that lights can be switched on whilst you’re away
- If you can, mark your belongings so they can be easily identified as yours
- Take photos of your room and belongings before you leave, so you have some evidence should you need it
Nobody wants to come back after a break to find their home ransacked and if you do, the last thing you then want to realise is that you’re not insured. So put your mind at rest and start your student home insurance quote today.