Does Insurance Cover Bike Theft or Damage?

Learn the steps you should take to keep your bicycle covered.

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Ross Martin

Insurance Writer

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  • 4+ years in the Insurance Industry

Ross joined The Zebra as a writer and researcher in 2019. He specializes in writing insurance content to help shoppers make informed decisions.

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Kristine Lee

Insurance Analyst

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  • Licensed Insurance Agent — Property and Casualty
  • 4+ years of Experience in the Insurance Industry

Kristine is a licensed insurance agent who joined The Zebra in 2019 as an in-house content researcher and writer. Before joining The Zebra, she was a…

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Renata Balasco

Senior Content Strategist

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  • Licensed Insurance Agent — Property and Casualty

Renata joined The Zebra in 2020 as a Customer Experience Agent. Since 2021, she has worked as licensed insurance professional and content strategist.…

Bicycle insurance basics: does homeowners or renters insurance cover theft?

Yes — bike theft is covered by home or renters insurance — with a few caveats.

A bike falls under your personal property section of your home or renters policy and theft is a covered claim. However, depending on the value of your bike and your deductible, it might not make sense for you to file a claim.

Let’s outline the best practices for bike theft and your property insurance.

Key takeaways: 

  • You can get coverage for your bike through renters or homeowners insurance, or through a bike insurance-specific company if you're a competitive rider. 
  • A homeowners or renters insurance policy will cover a stolen bike under the personal property section of your policy.
  • Extra coverage can be added on via endorsement for expensive bikes. 
  • A theft claim will likely not be covered if you did not secure your bike with a lock— this is considered negligent by insurance companies. 

Do you need bike insurance?

If your bike is worth upwards of the $700 to $1,000 range, it might be a good idea to purchase extra bicycle insurance through your renters or homeowners policy. Items such as bicycles, jewelry, fine art and firearms face limited coverage due to their high value. These items face liability sub-limits — when an insurance company may restrict financial compensation for valuable items.

One workaround is an endorsement (sometimes called a rider). An insurance endorsement boosts the total coverage you have for a particular item. If you own an expensive bike, consider a scheduled personal property endorsement. This will require you to have the item appraised, but it's the best way to insure your property comprehensively.

A traditional bicycle insurance endorsement will only offer compensation if your bicycle is damaged in the event of a covered peril — like vandalism or theft.

If you use your bicycle for racing or competitions, consider a bike insurance-specific company such as Velosurance or Sundays Insurance. Your typical homeowners or renters insurance policy will not cover structural damage sustained while racing or competing.

Special limits on personal property
Sub-limit Property Limitations
$200 Money, gold, coins  
$1,500 Jewelry, watches, furs Theft-only
$1,500 Watercraft, trailers Theft-only
$2,500 Firearms  
$2,500 Silverware  
$2,500 Business property On-premises
$500 Business property Off-premises
Varies Electronics  
Varies Bicycles  

The Zebra's recommendation for bike insurance

If you're in need of an insurance endorsement for your bike, we've partnered with Lemonade, a renters insurance provider that offers competitive rates and easily allows you to customize coverage. Lemonade Extra Coverage can offer deductible-free protection for your bike beyond a basic policy— it covers cosmetic damage, theft, and crash damage— paying to repair or replace the bike entirely. 

Lemonade is not a quote comparison site, meaning they only sell Lemonade policies. If you're not set on one renters insurance company or would like more guidance on which coverage is best for you, consider speaking with one of The Zebra's friendly licensed insurance agents. Call us at 888-444-2833 so you can get the best renters insurance policy for you.



Need a Renters Insurance Quote?


*As a Lemonade partner, The Zebra may receive a commission for any policies purchased.


How to file an insurance claim for bicycle theft

If your bike is damaged or stolen, follow these steps to start the process of recouping your losses. Learn more about how to file a renters claim.

police
1. File a police report

Provide all the necessary information related to the theft, including a description of the bike, its location and the time at which the theft occurred. Request a copy of the police report for your and your insurance company’s records.

pictures
2. Take pictures

This could help streamline the claims process if parts were stolen from your bike, or if it was vandalized. This could include stolen wheels, pedals or even a damaged or stolen lock.

contact
3. Contact your insurance company

Call the claims department of your renters or homeowners company and begin filing an insurance claim. Your claims representative will walk you through the logistics.

settlement
4. Wait for a settlement

Wait times vary by company and circumstance. Your payout will vary based on your bike and your policy — its value, your insurer's approach to reimbursing personal property losses and your deductible amount. The majority of unscheduled personal property is reimbursed on an actual cash value basis. Meaning, you are paid what your bike is worth today. 

For example, if you bought your bike five years ago for $900, you would not get $900 if it were stolen today. You would get the current value of a five-year-old bike, minus your deductible. This is the drawback of actual cash value reimbursement. We recommend insuring your personal property coverage on a replacement cost basis. Replacement cost will give you the funds necessary to buy a new bike today. Replacement cost factors into your deductible.


Does renters insurance increase after a theft claim?

According to The Zebra's data, a renters insurance theft claim can raise your rate by about 25% — which makes theft the priciest type of claim to affect your premium. For example, the average policyholder is paying $246 in annual renters insurance premiums with no claims — this rate would increase by $62 after one theft claim and $73 after a second. 

Renters insurance is generally affordable compared to other lines of insurance; it costs an average of $20 a month. Despite this, it never hurts to look for a cheaper rate, particularly in the aftermath of a settled claim.

We compared renters insurance premiums from some top companies to find the most affordable rate with a theft claim on your record. See the results below.

Renters Insurance Premiums by Company after a Theft Claim
Insurance Company Rate After Theft Claim
Allstate $380
American Family $360
Farmers $321
Nationwide $324
Progressive $346
State Farm $200
Travelers $342
USAA $258

The Zebra’s renters insurance data methodology

The renters insurance rates published in this guide are based on The Zebra’s annual analysis of average renters insurance premiums in every U.S. ZIP code. This data comes to us from Quadrant Information Services, which sources the latest approved rate filings across carriers in each state from S&P Global. Quadrant then uses an internal QA process to validate the information and build reports before the data is queried and analyzed by The Zebra.

These rates are based on a sample user profile: a single 30-year-old renter with an HO-4 renters policy living in a 1,000-square-foot apartment and carrying these coverage limits:

  • $50,000 for personal property
  • $100,000 for personal liability
  • $5,000 for loss of use
  • $1,000 for medical payments
  • $500 deductible

To provide insight to renters on how specific personal factors (like age, location and coverage level) can affect your premium, this base profile is then adjusted for different factors commonly used by insurance companies. For more information, see our full data methodology.

We found that State Farm could be the cheapest option after a theft claim, with an average rate of just $17 per month. This company would be a good place to look first. Also consider our partner Lemonade, which prides itself on affordable coverage and speedy claims resolution. Getting a quote with Lemonade is quick and easy.


Frequently asked questions — Bike theft and insurance

This depends. If you were deemed not-at-fault (i.e., the other driver hit you), their car insurance would cover the damage through their property damage liability coverage. Your homeowners or renters would not cover this.

Insurance companies typically require you to take any and all means to protect your property. If the bike was not locked up, your insurance company might deny your claim.

If your accessories were stolen or damaged by a covered peril and are currently worth more than your deductible, they should be covered. For anything to be covered, the total value needs to be greater than your deductible.

If you've made significant improvements to your bike, update your insurance policy to reflect its current value. Without knowing the value of your upgrades, your actual cash value or replacement cost value will not reflect your payout.

No, car insurance would not cover a bike theft claim. Your renters or homeowners insurance policy would cover a stolen bike under the personal property section.

About The Zebra

The Zebra is not an insurance company. We publish data-backed, expert-reviewed resources to help consumers make more informed insurance decisions.

  • The Zebra’s insurance content is written and reviewed for accuracy by licensed insurance agents.
  • The Zebra’s insurance editorial content is not subject to review or alteration by insurance companies or partners.
  • The Zebra’s editorial team operates independently of the company’s partnerships and commercialization interests, publishing unbiased information for consumer benefit.
  • The auto insurance rates published on The Zebra’s pages are based on a comprehensive analysis of car insurance pricing data, evaluating more than 83 million insurance rates from across the United States.