The average annual premium for motorcycle insurance across the U.S. is $519, according to J.D. Power’s National Automobile Dealers Association guide.
However, this rate can vary dramatically based on location, age, gender, and other factors. For a comprehensive look at motorcycle insurance, see our piece on Motorcycle Insurance Basics.
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What Factors Determine Motorcycle Insurance Rates?
Similar to car insurance, your driving record is a dominant consideration in determining your motorcycle insurance premium. Other factors such as your age, where you live, how often and far you ride, and any theft data on the make and model of motorcycle you own will also play a role.
With motorcycles, insurance companies know that in the situation of an at-fault accident, a motorcycle will likely cause less damage to a car or SUV than other types of vehicles. For that reason, motorcycle insurance tends to be fairly affordable compared to car insurance.
Type of Coverage
If you have a loan on your motorcycle, your lender will likely require you to have comprehensive and collision coverage, along with liability coverage and, in most states, uninsured driver coverage.
If you own your bike outright and don’t have a loan, your insurance requirements may be different—but most states require insurance coverage. Even if you aren’t required to carry insurance, it’s a good idea to have coverage. The type and amount of coverage you choose will affect how much you pay for motorcycle insurance.
Cost of The Bike
As with cars and other vehicles, the more expensive the motorcycle, the higher your insurance premium could be. This is because pricier motorcycles could cost more to repair.
Whether the bike is a newer or older model could factor into your rate, too. Like cars, motorcycles now come with many electronic features that make the bike safer to ride but can be more expensive to fix. The availability of parts and repair rates could also matter when it comes to motorcycle insurance cost.
Motorcyclists love to customize their bikes! Adding panniers, skid plates, and other customized touches makes a bike “yours.” In some cases, they add to its functionality as well.
Make sure that you know what your policy says about adding parts. Sometimes modifications are only covered up to a set dollar limit, and sometimes they aren’t covered at all. In those cases, you may need an “accessories rider” that will cover the cost of any after-market modifications if they are damaged in an accident or stolen from your bike. Be sure to talk to your agent if you are adding customizations to your bike. You can connect with a Guaranteed Rate Insurance agent here.
If you have a completely custom bike, like the ones popularized by the show American Chopper, you will probably need a special policy rather than the standard motorcycle insurance this article covers. Most motorcycle insurance is typically designed for motorcycles that are factory-produced, not custom bikes.
Layup Insurance Coverage
If your motorcycle is off the road for months at a time as the snow piles up, you might wonder why you should bother paying for motorcycle insurance when you aren’t riding. For this type of scenario, many insurers offer what is known as “layup insurance” for your bike. This is a type of seasonal insurance that protects your bike from situations such as theft or fire while potentially saving you money by temporarily suspending collision coverage.*
It’s essential to think hard about whether or not layup coverage is right for you. If you’re the type of rider who wants to take advantage of an unseasonably warm and dry day that surprises you in January by taking your motorcycle out for a spin, layup coverage probably isn’t right for you. That’s because your collision coverage is suspended for the months that you’re unlikely to be riding, so if you were to get into an accident, you wouldn’t be covered.
Given the heightened risk that comes with riding a motorcycle, experience and situational awareness are very important. Inexperienced riders may end up paying much more for motorcycle insurance than those who have been riding for years—just like with newly licensed car drivers.
The good news is that, over time, your motorcycle insurance rates could potentially go down as long as you’re a safe rider with a clean driving record.
How Can I Potentially Save Money On Motorcycle Insurance?
There are several ways you may be able to save money. The first is by bundling your policies. If your homeowners insurance or renters insurance company offers motorcycle insurance, you may be able to save money by packaging them together.
Another possible way to save is by completing a motorcycle driver’s safety course. Not all insurers offer this option, however, so call your agent and ask about this or other discounts that might be available to you. Or, connect with a Guaranteed Rate Insurance agent, ready to find the best motorcycle insurance for your current situation.
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The Bottom Line
The cheapest motorcycle insurance policy might not always be the right policy for you. The most basic policy that doesn’t cover expensive after-market upgrades you’ve made might mean that you’re left to pay out-of-pocket for these repairs if you ever need to make a claim.
Many components contribute to the cost of motorcycle insurance, and insurers will weigh these factors differently, leading to a wide range of premiums even within the same state for the same bike. This means that you should shop around and get several quotes before deciding on motorcycle insurance. Guaranteed Rate Insurance can help you find the right motorcycle insurance policy to fit your needs. Start comparing quotes or speak with an Expert Agent to get started today!
*Savings, if any, vary based on the consumer’s profile and other factors. Contact your insurance agent for more information. Restrictions apply.
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