20 Replies Latest reply: Jan 15, 2013 6:35 PM by sliver2907 RSS

    Bikes?

    New Member

      We have several rental properties in Marco Island, FL.  I have gotten several inquires about whether we provide bikes, particularly from European inquiries. I have been reluctant to add bicycles to our inventory because of the legal liabilities if someone is hurt using one of our bikes. Also, I'm concerned about the maintenance issue. Am I being too cautious? What is our liability, in fact.

        • Bikes?
          kathy.stesney New Member

          I can't answer legally, and maybe I'm being foolish, but I do provide bicycles and helmets and locks, and have never had a problem. People love it.

          • Bikes?
            Contributor

            I have both adult bikes and children's bikes at both of my homes. I look for places that have  bikes when I'm looking at places to rent.   Repairs can become more than expected, we have  had a lot of flat tires to fix- I'm not sure why that happens so much. I thnk maybe teenagers that are rougher on the bikes, or dare devil youngsters slamming them around. Both of my homes are in Cape Coral. I love biking on Marco Island, I think you should add them.

              • Re: Bikes?
                New Member

                Hi Karen,

                 

                Thanks for your guidance. One question: do you carry insurance to protect against a tenant's injury while biking? And how dol you handle flat tires and other bike maintenance. We don't live where we have our rentals.

                 

                Regards,

                 

                John

                  • Bikes?
                    Contributor

                    No, I do not carry special insurance coverage. In my contract there is a claus that says:

                    #6  Sunny Paradise will not be responsible for any loss, damage, injury or death to the client, family member or guest of the client, with particular emphasis on the use of the bicycles, balls, pool, spa, boat , motor or canal, stove or garbage disposal, or slippery tiles. Client, family and guests are required to carry insurance covering their own individual personal liability and personal property. Client, family and guests are responsible for loss, damage or injury to Sunny Paradise or any other aggrieved party caused by their negligence, lack of knowledge or willful misconduct. They sign the contract in agreement. I'm not a lawyer, however.

                    My handyman/cleaners do not check on the bikes so they could sit with a flat tire for a while, and I don't know who caused it either- so no recourse for repayment.  I do have an air pump guests can use. We have to take at least one tire in to be repaired every time we stay (twice a year) at about $25 per tire. So far no guests have called to complain, should they call, I would ask my handyman to take it and get it repaired for them.

                • Bikes?
                  kathy.stesney New Member

                  Hi John,

                  I'm in San Diego. I've never had to repair a bike, and I'm kinda hoping that if anyone gets a flat, they take it to the bike shop down the street and get it fixed (or buy a tube and just change it themselves.) Pretty simple. Like changing a light bulb. I provide a pump. If they feel the need to deduct the cost of the tube from the rent, so be it. (I don't really have "rental properties"- I just rent out my home while I travel a few months at a time.)

                  Kathy

                    • Re: Bikes?
                      New Member

                      Hi Kathy,

                       

                      Thanks for your input. Sounds like it's working for you.

                       

                      Regards,

                       

                      John

                      • Bikes?
                        New Member

                        Aloha!

                         

                        Bikes are a great way to stoke out renters! If there is a flat, I imagine they would fix it. Both of my beach cruisers are used and in working shape but nothing special, the salt air rusts everything!

                         

                        In terms of liability I have a 2 million dollar rental coverage, I also have a pool and spa. In the end if you are sued the extent of your coverage (beyond the normal) is less important than how you deal with your customer and if needed the quality of your lawyer. In a nutshell, keep your customer happy and hope for the best but be prepared for the worst!

                         

                        Buona Fortuna!

                          • Re: Bikes?
                            New Member

                            Kevin,

                             

                            You are so right about how you deal with tenants--on any issue, let alone bikes. Thanks for your input.

                             

                            John

                             

                             

                             

                            Date: Wed, 30 Mar 2011 11:33:21 -0500

                            From: community@homeaway.com

                            To: jldotsonjr@hotmail.com

                            Subject: - Re: Bikes?

                             

                             

                             

                             

                             

                             

                             

                             

                             

                             

                             

                             

                             

                             

                             

                             

                            Seek Advice. Get Answers. Optimize your Vacation Rental Business.

                             

                             

                             

                            Re: Bikes? created by kervin.krause in Amenities - View the full discussion

                             

                             

                             

                            Aloha!

                             

                            Bikes are a great way to stoke out renters! If there is a flat, I imagine they would fix it. Both of my beach cruisers are used and in working shape but nothing special, the salt air rusts everything!

                             

                            In terms of liability I have a 2 million dollar rental coverage, I also have a pool and spa. In the end if you are sued the extent of your coverage (beyond the normal) is less important than how you deal with your customer and if needed the quality of your lawyer. In a nutshell, keep your customer happy and hope for the best but be prepared for the worst!

                             

                            Buona Fortuna!

                             

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                        • Bikes?
                          Contributor

                          I also don't let guests use our bikes because of the legal liability. Unless you check each bike before guests arrive (unlikely) there will always be the risk that someone could injure themselves on a poorly maintained bike.

                           

                          An easier option is to recommend a local hire shop.

                          • Re: Bikes?
                            New Member

                            We do not allow guests to use our bikes because we have helmets that only fit us.

                             

                            When I send my guests their property access details, I have the local rental shop contact my guests via e-mail with all the options for rentals and packages (i.e. Electric scooters, kayaks, tandems).

                             

                            The rental shop is in Anna Maria. Last summer each renter who had opted to come to Anna Maria instead of the Panhandle because of the oil spill was asked which rental shop they would have used in the Panhandle and she sent the Panhandle rental shop a portion of their profit from the rental!

                              • Re: Bikes?
                                New Member

                                That's an interesting twist. I'll check it out here.

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                Date: Thu, 31 Mar 2011 12:45:57 -0500

                                From: community@homeaway.com

                                To: jldotsonjr@hotmail.com

                                Subject: - Re: Bikes?

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                Seek Advice. Get Answers. Optimize your Vacation Rental Business.

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                Re: Bikes? created by ahchappell in Amenities - View the full discussion

                                 

                                 

                                 

                                We do not allow guests to use our bikes because we have helmets that only fit us.

                                 

                                When I send my guests their property access details, I have the local rental shop contact my guests via e-mail with all the options for rentals and packages (i.e. Electric scooters, kayaks, tandems).

                                 

                                The rental shop is in Anna Maria. Last summer each renter who had opted to come to Anna Maria instead of the Panhandle because of the oil spill was asked which rental shop they would have used in the Panhandle and she sent the Panhandle rental shop a portion of their profit from the rental!

                                 

                                Reply to this message by replying to this email -or- go to the message on Community

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                                © 2010 HomeAway.com Inc. 1011 W. Fifth Street, Suite 300, Austin, TX 78703

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                              • Bikes?
                                tansy Active Contributor

                                we stopped... we're too close to the beach and if someone does take a bike on the beach it's effectively ruined unless you are able in time to high pressure hose it and grease it all up... but if they have the bike for a week you have no chance!

                                 

                                Funny thing is when folk bring their bikes with them... those bikes never go near the beach!

                                 

                                We had a guest come back for the 8th year in a row, this year she decided to hire bikes locally - when she told me over a few glasses of wine how they'd all been along the beach and someone got stuck in sand up to the pedals and how great it was riding through the sea as the tide came in... I don't know how I kept a straight face... we've binned 4 bikes from exactly this sort of thing happening - we didn't realize that ours had been in the sea and didn't grease them up enough, turned into rust!

                                 

                                When we did do bikes we didn't charge but made it very very clear that we accepted no responsibility if there was an accident but if they lost it or it was stolen we expected re-imbursement, we never had a problem with any of this... but then you need to have everything so tip top we felt it really wasn't worth it, 4 people in 2 years went out for a bike ride for a whole 2 hours...we decided let the professional bike people do it or bring your own... this works for us.

                                  • Re: Bikes?
                                    New Member

                                    Hi Tansy,

                                     

                                    That was a most helpful response. You've convinced me: I may lose a rental, but I'll refer people to the bike rental place from now on.

                                     

                                    Thanks for your response.

                                     

                                    Regards,

                                     

                                    John Dotson

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                    Date: Fri, 8 Jul 2011 16:01:06 -0500

                                    From: community@homeaway.com

                                    To: jldotsonjr@hotmail.com

                                    Subject: - Re: Bikes?

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                    Seek Advice. Get Answers. Optimize your Vacation Rental Business.

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                    Re: Bikes? created by tansy in Amenities - View the full discussion

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                    we stopped... we're too close to the beach and if someone does take a bike on the beach it's effectively ruined unless you are able in time to high pressure hose it and grease it all up... but if they have the bike for a week you have no chance!

                                     

                                    Funny thing is when folk bring their bikes with them... those bikes never go near the beach!

                                     

                                    We had a guest come back for the 8th year in a row, this year she decided to hire bikes locally - when she told me over a few glasses of wine how they'd all been along the beach and someone got stuck in sand up to the pedals and how great it was riding through the sea as the tide came in... I don't know how I kept a straight face... we've binned 4 bikes from exactly this sort of thing happening - we didn't realize that ours had been in the sea and didn't grease them up enough, turned into rust!

                                     

                                    When we did do bikes we didn't charge but made it very very clear that we accepted no responsibility if there was an accident but if they lost it or it was stolen we expected re-imbursement, we never had a problem with any of this... but then you need to have everything so tip top we felt it really wasn't worth it, 4 people in 2 years went out for a bike ride for a whole 2 hours...we decided let the professional bike people do it or bring your own... this works for us.

                                     

                                    Reply to this message by replying to this email -or- go to the message on Community

                                    Start a new discussion in Amenities by email or at Community

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                    © 2010 HomeAway.com Inc. 1011 W. Fifth Street, Suite 300, Austin, TX 78703

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                                  • Re: Bikes?
                                    New Member

                                    I provide bikes against the advice of a friend/ fellow VR owner.  He says no matter how nice you are to the guest, no matter how much the guest loves you, no matter how anti-litigous the guest is, when the guest's insurance company gets their hospital bill from the guest getting in a bike/car accident, it is the insurance company that will sue the shirt off your back, even if the guest does not want to.

                                    • Re: Bikes?
                                      Contributor

                                      One idea I haven't had time to pursue is one I saw in Hawaii.  Rather than renting bikes, the shop sells used bikes to vacationers and then buys them back for very little upon their departure.  I thought that this would be a good business for a college student located near the rentals.  Stores like K-Mart sell schwinn beach cruisers for around $100.  I would then "sell" the bike to the renter for $100 (less than a weekly bike rental in most places) and then buy the bike back at the end of their stay for say $25.  I would share the $75 "profit" with the college student who manages the program in my absence once I paid for the bike with the first sale.  There would be obvious maintenance issues at some point, but could always buy a new bike and cover the cost with the first "sale".  Helmets are another matter, but just an idea to consider!

                                        • Re: Bikes?
                                          New Member

                                          My fellow VR friend did precisely that for a guest that came for a one month stay.  Sold the bike to the guest to shield him from the liability of the guest getting hurt on a bike belonging to the property owner.  Then, he bought it back at the end of the stay.

                                        • Re: Bikes?
                                          terirusso Contributor

                                          Just a little FYI. I was informed by my insurance carrier that I would not be covered if a renter had an accident using one of my bicycles, unless they happened to fall off of it on my property. I decided that it was not worth the risk. I am in New Jersey, and there are plenty of bicycle rentals where we are. All of my repeat renters understood and didn't give me a hard time. I had one new renter ask for a discount so she could rent bicycles. I had taken bicycles off my list before she contacted me, so I knew I didn't have to discount. I would check with your individual insurance carrier. It has nothing to do with what state you are in. It has to do with your policy.

                                          • Re: Bikes?
                                            sliver2907 Contributor

                                            I just had an inquiry, and after careful thought, figured that I would rather not dip into my umbrella insurance and try to deal with a lawsuit over and accident.  I refered my potential renter to a local bike shop and our city has a bike share program, that seems to be popular with a station that is near my home.  The truth is, if you ever go to a B and B, hotel or guest house, have you ever seen bikes for use at any of them?  Probably because of the liability and insuruance they prefer not to go there.  Ditto, kayaks and water craft.