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Resource Guide: Motorcycles on a Budget

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If you’re considering purchasing your first motorcycle or upgrading to a new one, you’re probably looking to save as much money as you can. Remember that on top of the initial cost of the bike, you’ll need to budget for insurance, maintenance, repairs and accessories. Know how much you have available to spend.

After you’ve looked over your finances, check out these resources that can help you save money on your motorcycle.

Buying a Motorcycle on a Budget

  • motorcycle-harleySave Money with a Motorcycle: Learn more about how you can save money riding a motorcycle instead of driving a car.
  • How to Buy a Motorcycle: These are questions you should ask yourself before buying a motorcycle, including evaluating your experience and your budget.
  • 6 Things Nobody Tells You: Here’s a humorous article about the pros and cons of owning your own motorcycle.
  • motorcycle-wheelsBuying Your First Motorcycle: This article gives you some things to consider, like the width of the bike and the distance you’re expecting to travel.
  • How to Negotiate a Great Deal: Find out what the salesmen are doing so you can negotiate a better deal at a motorcycle dealership.
  • How to Get a Motorcycle Loan: Learn some tips to avoid common financing mistakes by knowing the right questions to ask and how to read the fine print.

Purchasing Insurance on a Budget

  • motorcycle-treeHow to Buy Motorcycle Insurance: You’ll want to read this for some general guidance on things to consider when looking for inexpensive insurance.
  • How Much Coverage?: This Department of Motor Vehicles compilation tells you the minimum coverage requirements on all 50 states.
  • Hidden Costs of Motorcycle Insurance: Know what to look out for when you’re picking a policy. The hidden costs and fees can add up to hundreds of dollars each year.

Saving on Motorcycle Maintenance

  • Motorcycle Maintenance Schedule: This handy chart helps you figure out how often you need to inspect, adjust, clean and replace based on your motorcycle’s mileage.
  • 10 DIY Maintenance Tasks: Complete with pictures and videos, this resource can help you do your own minor repairs and fixes.
  • motorcycle-viewImproving Your Gas Mileage: These 10 tips will help you boost your gas mileage to save money on fuel costs while properly maintaining your motorcycle.
  • Maintaining Your Motorcycle’s Leather: Chances are your motorcycle will have leather seats, and you’ll probably have leather accessories, too. Learn how to maintain these to prolong the leather’s life.

Buying Accessories

  • Quick Facts on Saving Money: Find out how to locate inexpensive replacement parts and motorcycle accessories.
  • Pros and Cons of Buying Gear Online: Learn the advantages and disadvantages of buying motorcycle gear online. One of the biggest pluses is saving money!
  • Tips for Buying Safety Gear: Make sure you know what you’ll need to ride safely, including a helmet, gloves, proper clothing and good, protective boots.
  • motorcycle-tireChoosing a Motorcycle Helmet: It’s important to know what to look for when you’re trying on the helmet that could save your life in the event of an accident.
  • Motorcycle Boot Guide: This is a very handy guide with lots of photographs to explain the different styles of boots available as well as how much they typically cost.
  • Choosing the Right Saddlebags: Learn more about the types of saddlebags you can get to add extra storage space to your motorcycle within a budget.

Some Final Tips

The first thing you’ll want to do is review your finances and establish a realistic budget. Do your best to not go over this budget both for your initial down payment investments and your monthly expenses.

Consider getting a loan through a credit union. Credit unions are much more amenable to working with people with bad or no credit history. They also offer great interest rates.

Also think about getting a warranty, especially on used motorcycles from a dealer’s lot. The extra cost can be financed through a credit union, and it could potentially save you thousands if you ever find yourself making a warranty claim.

Try to space out some purchases if possible. Add nonessential accessories over time. But remember that you cannot skip or skimp on safety gear. While you cannot buy a used helmet, you can buy used riding jackets, saddlebags, etc.

Know your user manual inside and out. You’ll need to be aware of the maintenance schedule. You’ll also want to know the warnings signs of potential problems, especially for more serious ones like tire or engine trouble.

Remember that you need a separate motorcycle license in most states to legally ride on public streets. There’s usually a test and a small application fee around $30, so make sure you get licensed before you drive off the lot.

Watch free videos online. You can learn a lot on riding safety, basic maintenance, simple repairs and more, all for free on websites like YouTube.

If you’re a new rider, take lessons through a program like ABATE. These lessons will teach you basic maneuvers and also how to lessen the risk of personal injury in the event of an accident. Proving you completed an official course may also lower your insurance rates.

Connect with bikers in your area. They will have great free advice and may even have tools on hand to show you how to do basic maintenance. Plus you can make some really great friends and have riding buddies.

Be aware of your visibility. Wear bright colors, reflective materials or even ride in a group of motorcycles. Visibility to other vehicles is vital to ensure your safety.

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