So now spring has sprung and the sun is shining, more of you will want to get out and about on your faithful bike again, but make sure your bike is secure. On average 376,000 cycles are stolen every year and over half of all cycle thefts in the UK take place close to home, in your garden, nearby passageways and from sheds and garages. So how do you know if your bicycle is covered under your home insurance? It’s not as straightforward as you may think, here are a few points to check you are covered on your policy.
Your cycle is one of the easiest items to steal and it normally carries a high price for just the one item, so it’s very attractive to thieves. Most standard home insurers will cover a pedal cycle for accidental loss or damage with no additional charge, but the cover will be within the home only and up to an average value of £500. If you want cover away from the home, for repairing and replacing your cycle, you would normally need to specify it on your home insurance and look at potentially paying an additional premium. If your cycle is valued under £500 for example, to ensure it is covered outside the home, typically you will need to note it under your unspecified personal possessions and ensure the overall value you have chosen is adequate to account for your cycle too. Your insurer can require you to use a ‘D-shaped Shackle lock’ and fix your cycle to an immovable object within the home or outbuilding when you are not using it.
There are many cycle locks to choose from, now more than ever, including locks with built-in alarms, GPS trackers and Bluetooth linked to your smart phone. However, to ensure you are covered in the event of a claim check with your insurer what lock they require and go to your nearest cycle shop for advice.
If the value of your bike is £1,500 or more for example your insurer may require a superior lock, such as a ‘Sold Secure’. For this value of cycle, your bike would normally need to be specified within your contents if you want cover within the home only, just ensure your overall contents is adequate. If you also want cover outside the home, your bike will need to be specified away from the home, so ensure you check you are covered correctly on your policy for your circumstances.
There are common restrictions that most insurers will not cover under your home insurance, such as using your cycle for track racing, or business. If you need cover for this it would be best to look for specific bicycle cover.
As more people choose cycling as their favoured form of transport or for pleasure and fitness there is more help out there to ensure your cycle stays safe. Stolen-bikes.co.uk allows you to check how many bikes in your area have been stolen as well as report your stolen bike – www.stolen-bikes.co.uk