Once you have figured out the basics of What You Need to Know When Purchasing Motorcycle Insurance and start shopping, below you will find some things to consider and different discounts that are frequently available to reduce your premium.
First, shop around and find an insurance company that you are confident that they will pay out in general and also pay out in a timely manner. You have likely heard of everything from quick and fair payouts all the way to disasters that end up going to court. The latter is extremely stressful and can delay you getting back on the road.
Second, make sure the company offers the types of coverage you need for your particular motorcycle. For instance, it is really difficult to find insurance for a custom bike. Each company is going to have different criteria as to what is considered “custom”. For example, with my bobber that is made from all stock salvage yard parts, except for the aftermarket frame, it is considered a “custom” because of the frame. Trying to find a company who would insure it was both time consuming and the premium ended up being almost twice as much if I just kept the stock frame.
Shopping around is not fun, but it is necessary to get a low base premium or getting lots of discounts won’t get you the lowest total premium. Below are some common policy discounts offered when insuring a motorcycle:
- Your age: often if you are over twenty-five you can qualify for a discount because the average riding patterns are different for an eighteen year old compared to a sixty year old.
- The type of motorcycle you own: If you have a cruiser instead of a high performance sports bike, your risk of getting in an accident is lower.
- Location: There are a lot of variables that cause motorcycle accidents where you live, so your location will affect your rate.
- If you have not had a claim, either had no tickets or only a minor ticket over varying time frames, there are often rate reductions of around 10% depending on the insurance provider.
- Motorcycle Safety Course: Having completed a motorcycle safety course will oftentimes get you discounts on your motorcycle insurance. Since the Motorcycle Safety Foundation courses are almost always approved courses, I’d recommend choosing a course through them. This can get you a 10-15% discount. If you don’t qualify for other discounts or your rates are higher because of a particular factor, taking a safety course can help offset the higher rates.
- Multi-policy discount: If you have an insurance company that you already have other insurance policies from, like homeowners or automobile insurance, you might qualify for a multi-policy discount. When I was looking for insurance for my bike, I did some research and contacted the company through which I have my other insurance. They didn’t seem to provide a lot of motorcycle policies and their rates were a lot higher so this negated any savings from applied discounts. Therefore, I contacted other insurance companies.
- Multi-motorcycle: If you have more than one motorcycle, there are different companies that offer discounts ranging from 10%-20%. With that being said, look at the total cost for insuring all of your motorcycles and not just the current one.
- Lowering the chance of your motorcycle being stolen with an anti-theft device or an alarm and/or increasing the chance of getting your motorcycle back with a GPS recovery system will usually get you a lower premium.
- Insurance companies determine their rates using statistics to determine the risk of claims, so they do offer rate reductions for riders with traction control braking devices like motorcycle ABS that have been shown to reduce the number and severity of accidents.
- If you are a member of one of the large motorcycle organizations, like the Motorcycle Safety Foundation or HOG (Harley Owners Group), some insurance companies offer group discounts.
- Paying your premium in full rather than in payments cuts down the administrative costs for the motorcycle insurance company and subsequently the amount you pay for your premium.
- Homeowners statistically tend to have lower accident rates, so if you are a homeowner, make sure to ask the insurance company about this discount.
If you store your motorcycle and do not drive it at all for long periods of time, there is a “lay-up” provision where you only carry comprehensive insurance (covers fire, theft, etc.) at a lower cost during these months.
Finally, get multiple motorcycle insurance quotes, ask questions and read the policy as you not only want the lowest rate, but also the best insurance policy for you and your motorcycle.