Electric bicycles (or e-bikes) are becoming increasingly more popular. In 2019, legislation was passed in Wisconsin that put e-bikes in spotlight and ensured that electric bicycles are treated in the same manner as human-powered bicycles. You have probably had someone pass you on an electric bicycle and not even known it.
• E-bikes have electric assist. This means that the rider is still required to pedal (Class 1 and Class 3 bicycles), which makes it different from recreational vehicles such as electric scooters
• Electric bicycles enable to the user to go faster. Top speeds range from 20 to 28 MPH depending on class. Commutes that might otherwise be unmanageable on a bike due to time constraints are now a possibility
• Riders can carry more weight. Someone with a child, or a load of groceries, can find their electric bicycle to be an important tool in carrying heavier items due to decreased resistance
• E-bikes can better keep up with traffic. We won’t lie, sometimes riding alongside traffic is scary. Thanks to the increased top speeds, electric bicycles can help you keep a better pace with residential traffic and allow you to take off from a stop faster
• Can reduce costs and increase fitness. After you begin to substitute your bike for your car or other paid transportation, you may see reduced costs. Similarly, replacing sitting with pedaling will next you extra exercise in your day
To learn more about bicycles and bicycle laws in Wisconsin, visit the Wisconsin Bike Federation. Evergreen Credit Union is a proud business member of the Wisconsin Bike Fed!
If you are interested in purchasing a bicycle in order to change your commuting style, or maybe replace one you already have, that is an admirable financial goal. Here are the steps to make it a reality:
• You will need to determine the maximum amount you are willing to spend. Start by researching different options, including Style and Class.
• Once you have settled on a make and model, take a look at your income and expenses by creating a simple monthly budget that encompasses your fixed costs including mortgage, rent, bills, and any loan payments
• If you can afford to save each paycheck, contact your primary financial to see if you can automatically put a portion of your paycheck in a special savings account or sub share. (Or maybe check out a program like Debit Card Round Up!)
• Divide your bicycle cost by the amount you are saving weekly. Voila, you now know how long it will take to purchase your new bicycle
For those needing their bike sooner rather than later, electric bicycles have VIN numbers and a motor, meaning that lenders may be willing to class your ride as a recreational vehicle. At Evergreen Credit Union, we do exactly that! Check out our affordable recreational vehicle loans to see what works best for you. When you are ready, give us a text or call at (920) 729-2999.
Evergreen Credit Union is a full-service financial institution with an environmental focus in Neenah and Appleton, Wisconsin. Membership is open to everyone who lives or works in Outagamie, Waupaca, Waushara, Calumet, or Winnebago counties.