Insurance for your Toys
Why do you need insurance for your motorcycle?
You'll enjoy being out on the open road even more when you're not worried about the safety of yourself, your passengers or your investment. Here are a few things to consider:
- If you're in an accident or your motorcycle is stolen, it costs money, often a lot of money, to fix or replace it.
- If you or a passenger is injured in an accident, medical costs can be extremely expensive.
- If your motorcycle is responsible for damage or injury to others, you may be sued for much more than you're worth.
- Your motorcycle may be one of your most prized possessions. It deserves special protection.
Things to consider and questions to ask your agent
Your Independent Agent is an advocate for finding insurance that meets your specific needs. Here are a few things to consider as you prepare for the discussion:
- How much can I afford to pay if my motorcycle is in an accident, damaged or stolen? (Ask your agent what your cost savings would be if you raised your deductible.)
- What discounts and programs are available? (Ask about discounts for taking safety classes or having multiple policies. You may also save money if your motorcycle is stored in a garage or if you belong to a motorcycle association.)
- How much medical and liability coverage should I have?
- Does the insurance company have a good reputation for customer service? Is it known for paying claims fairly and promptly?
- What's the process for filing and settling a claim?
Tips for the cost-conscious rider
Many factors can play a role in determining what your insurance costs will be such as your age, your driving record, where you live and the type of motorcycle you own, or being a graduate of a rider-training course.
- Many companies offer discounts from 10 to 15 percent on motorcycle insurance for graduates of training courses, such as the Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) rider course. Riders under the age of 25, usually considered a higher risk, may see some savings by taking this course. It's also a good idea for cyclists who have already had accidents.
- Maintaining a good driving record with no violations will also help reduce your premiums.
- In many northern states, riders may save money by buying a "lay-up" policy. With a lay-up policy, all coverage except comprehensive is suspended during winter months.
- Find out what discounts your insurance representative offers. Multibike discounts for those insuring more than one bike, organization discounts, if you're a member of a motorcycle association, and mature rider discounts for experienced riders, are just a few possibilities. Discounts can range anywhere from 10 percent to 20 percent, depending on the company and your state. Availability and qualifications for discounts vary from company to company and state to state.
- Keep in mind that the type, style (such as a sports bike vs. a cruiser) and age of the motorcycle, as well as the number of miles you drive a year and where you store your bike may also affect how much you pay for your premium.