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Jun 22nd, 2016
I have a Millennial child. Do you? Or, are you a Millennial?
There has been endless analysis of this generation, and it is interesting to see broad spectrums being applied to a group. Yet, when we appraise the individuals, they ultimately defy the stereotypes. I guess, the same with us Boomers!
But, there are statistics that don’t lie regarding the majority. One is that they rent their living space rather than owning. I don’t see this as negative or positive, just what works for the majority (I understand “don’t tie me down”!). The negative I do see relates to the insurance aspect. Studies have shown the majority do not have renter’s insurance. And, it’s not because of the cost (even if the same studies have shown they way over estimate the cost). The basic reason is they don’t understand the product and need. Shame on us insurance agents, parents and educational system!
Protection is the name of the game, and maybe Millennials have a skewed idea of what they need to protect. With a few exceptions, it’s not their stuff. Losing one’s possessions to a fire, tornado, or other risks will hurt, but they can recover. The real potential catastrophic danger is in the liability arena. These kids (no disrespect, they are youngsters to me) are primarily college-educated, higher-than-average income earners and have huge potential to be financially successful. Let’s share with them a few examples of the real risk –
That nice scented candle Grandma got you for Christmas did get used. Problem was it being forgotten and too close to the window curtains. The resulting fire burned $350,000 of your landlord’s building and the possessions of your fellow tenants. The $5,000 of stuff you lost is nothing compared to what you are going to be sued for in losses. Now, add in your legal fees...
The picnic you were invited to was a blast (especially the impromptu softball game) until that little kid wandered close as you warmed up with the bat in your hands. The stitches to the kid’s face were just the beginning. Possible concussion? Facial disfiguration? Parents’ and kid’s pain, suffering and mental anguish? Wait until their lawyer gets hold of you (you weren’t drinking at that party, were you?).
It was just a small gathering of neighbors that ended up with burgers, beers and cocktails on your deck. Not really sure who that one guy was that that showed up half way through (friend of a friend?). Maybe had a bit too much to drink? Didn’t really see him leave? Next day you recognize the mug shot after he killed two kids on bicycles on his way home. Were you serving the alcohol? If not, were you monitoring inebriation since it was at your place? Not your responsibility???? Again, the lawyers will have questions and accusations. Maybe not your fault, but how deep is your legal fees account when they come after you????
And, do you own a dog? Let kids pet it? Including the ones that grab their ears and try to kiss it? Get the picture?
This is why you have renter’s insurance; for the defense expenses and liability protection it affords. You can’t get blood from a turnip and there are no debtors prison in the U.S., but they will garnish wages. It could be bad; you could pay for a really long time…
Let’s all do our part. Us parents. Insurance agents. Friends. Ask a renter if they have renter’s insurance. If they don’t, share with them the reasons, the low cost and who to call (Insurance Center locations) to get this important protection.
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