Thanks for the advice everyone provided in various other posts. Not only mine, but other informative posts I've been reading.
You may remember that I was trying to work out whether to use a 6 year old small mountain bike, or an ?? year old big mountainbike for a 100km ride and my daily 10 mile commute.
After some bad news from the LBS about the state of the bikes, I decided I should buy a new one but couldn't really afford it.
The government (yeah I know) came to the rescue with a UK tax scheme which meant I could buy a bike for half price.
The scheme allows a UK company to buy any bike (no ££ limit) and then 'rent' them to the employee. At the end of the loan period the employee can pay to buy the bike from the company.
The cool bits are:
- the company can claim back VAT (sales tax currently at 17.5%)
- when you 'rent' the bike from the company it comes out of your pre-tax earnings.
- You can get any bike you want and include accessories and safety gear (incl. hi-viz clothes).
My £400 bike (bike, fenders, rack, panniers) actually costs my company £340 after they claim back sales tax.
I then 'rent' the bike for £26 each month for 12 months, but as that's before tax it is the equivalent of £13 take home pay. I finally pay about £30 to buy the bike from the company (again before tax).
So in effect I've paid £170 for a £400 bike and the UK government has paid the rest.
So I went and bought one of these (I didn't get greedy, I had my eye on a £900 touring bike):
I should get the bike later today or tomorrow so I'll commute and let you know how it goes. I'm hoping to shave some time off my commute compared to the Mountainbike.