How can theft security affect your bike insurance?
There’s a huge range of security systems out there aimed at keeping your bike safe, but how do you know which ones are actually worth fitting from an insurance perspective?
Fear not, as MCN Compare has been talking to Adrian Flux, a policy underwriter who provides cover through our site, to find out. Read on for the low-down…
Is there a single piece of security equipment you would suggest fitting above all others to keep premiums low?
AF: “The largest discounts are usually available for approved tracking devices and alarm/immobilisers. However, we would always recommend a combination of approaches when it comes to bike security, as opposed to relying on one method or product type. Different solutions are more effective under different circumstance. We would think about the security you’ll use at home and then think differently again about the security you’ll use on the move. Whether at home or parked you should always try and secure your motorcycle to a fixed, immovable object, such as a wall or ground anchor at home and street furniture or even locking bikes together if that’s not possible. There are some great portable locking devices and tracking systems these days are much more affordable and sophisticated and are certainly worthy of serious consideration. As with most things, do your research, decide what works for you and spend as much as you can reasonably afford, it’s a good investment and will potentially last forever.”
Does being the victim of theft mean my premium will increase?
AF: “Usually, yes, but it does depend very much on the individual circumstances of the theft, your previous claims history and of the security arrangements and use of any replacement motorcycle. If the theft is the only incident on a client’s claims history, the increase in premium would not normally be too significant. If you have a no-claims bonus, it’s certainly worth considering paying a little more to protect it, which will help insulate against any increases in premium that might apply after a successful claim. The very best thing you can do though, is take all the usual sensible measures to reduce the likelihood of becoming a victim of theft in the first place, as any increase in future premiums can pale into insignificance next to the loss of your bike, the feeling of being a victim of crime, the inconvenience and stress involved and the frustration of potentially missing out on some great riding opportunities while you wait for the claim to be settled. There are policies available that will provide a replacement bike for a limited period after the theft of your motorcycle. Ask your broker for details.”
Roughly how much loading would a premium get for leaving a bike out in the street as opposed to locking it away in a garage?
AF: “We’re afraid that is a bit of a how long is a piece of string question as the difference can vary wildly depending on individual circumstances, the bike you have and the product. If you’re unable to keep your bike in a locked garage there are a number of things that you can do to both reduce the likelihood of a theft and reduce premiums. Bike covers, the best locks and chains, putting in an anchor point (if you can) or looking at trackers or an alarm/immobiliser. If you really insisted on a rough answer, we’d say that typically there’d be a difference of around 25%. The most important thing is to be honest though. There is no point saying your bike will be garaged only for it to be stolen and it to be clear that you don’t even have a garage. Theft claims tend to be investigated and google maps can also be quite revealing. It’s better to be honest, take preventive security measures, paying a bit more if need be and be safe in the knowledge that should the worst happen, you’ll be covered. You’ll sleep better for it.”
What advice can you offer new riders to keep insurance costs as low as possible?
AF: “The single biggest thing you can do if you’re a new rider to keep insurance costs down is to be a bit sensible when it comes to choosing your first bike. It shouldn’t come as a surprise that your insurance is expensive if you’re a new rider and your chosen first bike is a litre sports machine. Start on something a little less ambitious and as your experience grows, work through the bike range until you get to the bike of your dreams. At that time, you’ll be ready and able to get the very most from the bike when you do get there. Other than that, if you’ve just bought the bike for pleasure and you don’t have secure parking at work, I’d probably avoid commuting in the first instance. Get the insurance you need to be covered though, the is no point cutting corners to save a few quid as the consequences can be serious and long-lasting. Enjoy the open road and the peace of mind.”
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