How much does motorcycle insurance usually cost? Take your pick. While it would be nice to know exactly how much your motoring habit is going to cost you, it's not quite so easy to put an exact figure on it. Numerous factors go into deciding how much your motorcycle insurance is likely to set you back, including the kind of coverage you want, your age, your driving history, the type of motorcycle you have, and even where you live. With so many variables to consider, it's not possible to give a specific figure. Some riders may only need to pay $200, others might need to fork out $3000. To find out how much you'll usually need to pay, here's what you'll need to consider.
Where Do You Live?
Where you live has a big impact on how much you can expect to pay for motorcycle insurance. As thebalance.com notes, states with the best rates are those in the Midwest or Great Plains. Although the exact figure will vary depending on age, driving history, and various other factors, you can expect to pay around $382 in North Dakota, $414 in Iowa, $439 in Wyoming, $469 in Nebraska, and $472 in South Dakota. If you live in a state with a high population and glorious all-year-round weather, expect to pay a premium for your motorcycle insurance. States with the highest annual rates include California ($1,360), Louisiana ($1,175), Michigan ($1,083), New York ($969), and Arizona ($935).
What Kind of Bike Do You Own?
Most people think that the bigger the engine, the bigger the insurance rate. However, as ValuePenguin notes, the style of the motorcycle has a much bigger bearing on the price of coverage than the CCs of its engine. According to finder.com, your motorcycle type will affect your coverage as per the following:
- Choppers: Choppers are big bikes with big attitudes. Unfortunately, the extensive list of customized extras they come with usually makes them one of the most expensive bikes to insure.
- Cruisers: Cruisers might be iconic, but they lack the big, bold accessories of certain other types of motorcycles. From an insurance perspective, that's a good thing: expect to pay an average rate for this kind of bike.
- Dirt bikes: If you're lucky, your dirt bike might get classified as an ATV, which will reduce the cost of insurance substantially. Even if it doesn't, don't worry too much: as dirt bikes aren't designed for street riding, they typically cost less than bikes which are.
- Scooters: If you want to pay the least amount of insurance possible, get a scooter. With their small size and minimal power, most insurance providers have no problem in covering scooters for a very decent rate.
- Sport bikes: Sport bikes are high-performing, high-achieving bikes that are going to cost you an arm and a leg to insure.
- Trail bikes: Trail bikes work similarly to dirt bikes. If they're classified as a pure ATV, you'll get away with an incredibly low rate. If they're classified as a street-legal bike, you can expect to pay a little more, but not so much as to be a huge concern.
- Touring Bikes: With their powerful engines and their big price tags, you wouldn't expect a touring bike to attract a low insurance rate, and you'd be right. Insurance providers tend to consider them high risk, and attach the premiums to match.
How Much Did You Pay For Your Motorcycle?
If you paid a premium for your motorcycle, expect to pay a premium for your insurance. An expensive bike means that the cost of repair will be higher, resulting in a higher rate of coverage. Other factors to consider include...
- Safety Features - Does your motorcycle come with all the latest high-tech safety features? If it does, expect to get a better rate on your insurance than you'd get on an older bike with next to no safety gadgets.
- Theft Rate - The more appealing your bike is to thieves, the more you can expect to pay for insurance.
- Customization - Modifying your bike with custom headlights, chrome accessories, and extra seats might be all the rage, but expect to pay over the odds for all those additions.
- Use -How you plan on using your motorcycle will have a big impact on how much you pay for insurance. If you only intend to take it for occasional, leisurely spins across the city, you can expect to pay less than if you plan on taking it on long cross country tours or using it for racing.
- Age - The age of your bike is less of a concern than your own age. It may sound unfair, but the fewer birthdays you have behind you, the more you can expect to pay for insurance. An experienced rider in their thirties will often pay just a fraction of the price for insurance than a new rider in their early twenties. The good news is that rates start to decline after the age of 25 and continue to go down until the age of 70. As younger riders tend to favor sporty bikes, they can expect to pay over the odds both in terms of their age and their model preference. A rider aged between 20 and 24 looking for full coverage for a sport bike can expect to pay anything between $1000 and $3000.
- Coverage - A major factor in determining insurance rates is the type of coverage you opt for. Liability-only coverage will, for example, have a much smaller impact on your wallet than full coverage.
- Driving Record - If your driving record is littered with traffic violations, speeding fines, and worse besides, expect insurance providers to take a dim view of it... and to reflect that view in your rate. As a general rule, the cleaner your driving record, the less you'll need to stump out for insurance.
- Safety Course - If you're a novice rider, you can expect to pay more for insurance than a rider with 20 years of riding experience under their belt. There is, however, a way of slashing a good chunk off your rate: take a riding safety course. Most states will accept completion of a basic rider safety course as part of the qualification process for obtaining a license. If yours does, it's worth considering: not only will it make you a better rider, it'll make insurance companies more inclined to offer you a favorable rate.
Written by Benjamin Smith
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