If you are a homeowner, your bicycle is likely covered by your home insurance policy. But depending on how you structured your deductible, it may not be smart to file an insurance claim for a stolen bicycle.
Continue reading to find out how to protect your bicycle from theft and to learn what you should consider when deciding whether to file a claim.
Top 6 Anti-Theft Tips for Bicycle
- Locking your bike every time you leave it unattended—even for a moment—is the smartest way to prevent bicycle theft. An unlocked bike is an easy target and the primary reason many bikes get stolen.
- Park your bicycle in safe areas with adequate lighting. If possible, bring your bicycle inside and lock it if you leave it unattended in a public area.
- Invest in a high-quality U-lock. They are more reliable than chain or cable locks, which can be cut.
- Remove your quick-release wheel and secure it with your U-lock. This extra precaution fills your U-lock making it more difficult for a thief to pry open. Also, if your U-lock has a key, turn the keyhole toward the ground to make it difficult to pick.
- Use two different types of locks. This added security will discourage most thieves who won’t typically have the time or tools for both.
- Take the time to register your bike. If it is stolen, your best chance of getting it back is to have it registered with the local police or national bicycle registry. Register online at bikeregistrycanada.com.
Or, if you’re really set on keeping your bike safe, you just need to find a place that sells this device:
Is It Worth Filing a Claim?
Even if your homeowners insurance covers your bicycle, it might not be smart to file a claim. If the cost to replace your bicycle is less than your deductible, it does not make sense to file a claim.
If, however, your bicycle was a new, high-end model that cost more than your deductible, it may be advantageous to file a claim. In that case, it is important to be aware of any limitations your policy has for bicycle coverage. If the value of your bike is greater than the limitations of your policy, you should talk to your insurance broker about additional coverage.
Keep these four things in mind when deciding whether to file a claim:
- The cost of your deductible vs. the cost of your bike.
- Policy limitations on bicycles. If your bike is worth $600 but your policy limitation is $500, after paying your $300 deductible you would only receive $200 from your claim.
- Have you scheduled your bike on your property insurance policy? This important step adds a special clause to your policy and gives your insurance company a record of your bike’s description, accessories and cost so it can be replaced at full value if stolen or destroyed.
- You may risk losing discounts. Insurance companies offer discounts to homeowners who have gone years without filing a claim. Over time, the discount may be worth more than the bicycle.