Cyclists overestimating home contents cover

Commuters cycling
Many home contents policies might not be giving cyclists adequate cover for their needs
"nearly a third of contents policies only offer bike cover away from the home as an optional extra"
  • | by Kristian Dando

June 15-23 is Bike Week, the UK’s biggest mass participation cycling event, with events happening up and down the country.

But with thousands of people swapping four wheels for two, many cyclists are overestimating the cover afforded to their bike through their home insurance.

Many believe that their bike is automatically covered under their home contents policy. But in many cases, this is anything but true.

Gocompare.com has examined over 300 policies, and found that nearly a third only offer bike cover away from the home as an optional extra. Meanwhile, nearly half of home contents policies have a minimum personal possessions excess of £100 or more, meaning that budget bikes may not even be worth claiming for at all.

Riders of more expensive bikes may also end up being hit in the pocket if their cycle is stolen. Nearly half (42%) of polices will only pay out £500 or less per bike if it is stolen away from home - not a great deal of money considering the sheer expense of top-end models.

Mark Greening, home insurance spokesman for Gocompare.com, said: “With more than half a million bikes stolen each year, we strongly advise people to check whether their bicycle is covered by their home insurance and if its total value is covered. If you already have, or are thinking of buying, an expensive cycle – for example, a carbon fibre road bike can cost between £800 and £3,000 – then you will definitely need to talk to your insurer to arrange specific cover.”

Even if your policy does provide some cover for bikes, make sure you’ve read your home insurance’s small print and be sure you understand how your bike is covered, and what you are likely to get back if the worst should happen.

Find a Bike Week event near you.