Motorcycle Insurance Costs for First-time Bike Riders

insurance costs for first-time riders

Spring means clear roads and sunny days ahead, which motivates us to be outside more. Perhaps one way you plan on enjoying the nicer weather is by feeling the wind in your hair…literally. Motorcycles are perceived as a cheaper (and much more exciting depending on who you ask) alternative to your standard vehicles. However, what newbies don’t put into account is motorcycle insurance costs for first-time bike riders. Is it more expensive? And what all factors are considered for these costs?

Here is what you need to know about insurance costs for first-time bike riders:

What to Expect

Even though it may seem that motorcycles should have cheaper insurance options than regular motor vehicles, this is not always the case. An older car may have lower rates than a brand new street bike, insurance company Trusted Choice explains. They go on to say that rates do depend on where you live, the type of motorcycle, and how often you’ll ride. For example, if you live in New York and will only ride three months out of the year, you will pay less in insurance costs than someone who will ride every season, they say.

But, regardless of where you live, two factors come into play for higher insurance rates: age and experience.

What You Need to Know

Insurance costs for first-time bike riders tend to be higher. In an article by James Hirby on The Law Dictionary, younger and newly-licensed riders should “expect to pay a substantial premium” for a motorcycle policy. The reason for this, he writes, is that national statistics show younger riders are more likely to be involved in serious accidents, unlike older, more experienced drivers.

Along with age and experience, if you also live in an area with higher accident and crime rates, you should expect to pay a higher premium due to increased risk, Trusted Choice adds.

How often you plan to ride also affects your rates. For instance, if your bike will be your main source of transportation, this will lead to paying more on your policy. Conversely, if you plan to only use it leisurely, you will pay less.

What You Can Do

Naturally, one way to see about reducing the amount you’ll pay is to do a price comparison between companies. You should do this prior to even purchasing your bike.

Another way to reduce insurance costs, Hirby and the Law Dictionary staff advise not purchasing collision or comprehensive insurance on the bike. They say that if you bought the bike with your own money, you are not obligated to pay for the cost of repairs in the event of an accident. This alone could save you an extra $100 per month.

Additionally, Trusted Choice notes that bikes with larger engines that are more powerful will also affect your insurance costs. As a first-time rider, spend your first few years on a smaller bike in order to reduce your premium. You can always upgrade later. (And, you’ll be able to afford to do so a little more easily.)

Lastly, you should get your motorcycle license and take a rider training course to reduce your premiums. This will show insurance companies that you took the time to learn how to become a skilled, cautious rider.

The good news is that costs will go down with age (and experience). So, be patient and wise about your decisions, and you’ll be enjoying that open road at lower rates in no time.

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Are you or have you been a first-time rider? Do you find these tips useful? Share your own thoughts and tips in the comments below!

Renters Insurance for the Uninitiated

over insuredPeople insure their vehicles. People insure their homes. Why wouldn’t we insure our apartment? A lot of us think that living in a rental means that we don’t have to worry about insurance. Well, we do.

As any experienced renter will tell you, there are a lot of things that can wrong living in apartment. A toilet can overflow, an oven could stop working, or your roommate’s crazy ex could break in and vandalize your stuff. Sure, some of this stuff is covered under your landlord’s insurance, but usually only structural damage to the property. If anything happens to your personal possessions, that’s on you to cover.

That’s why getting renters insurance just makes sense. Like homeowners and auto insurance, it’s an investment. It protects you in cases of fire, vandalism and theft. Is it worth losing thousands of dollars because paying less than $20 a month for protection interfered with your coffee addiction? There are two forms of renters insurance tenants can invest in: Personal Property Coverage and Liability Coverage. Let’s take a look at what those packages entail.

Personal Property Coverage

As mentioned previously, the landlord is only responsible for protecting the structure of the rental. You are responsible for protecting your personal effects. This means if your TV is stolen in the middle of the night, personal property coverage can help compensate you for it.

Since renters insurance isn’t legally required for renters to have, there is no minimum you have to carry.  Though keep in mind, some insurance companies might impose a minimum limit in order to provide you with their services.

There are other nuances to consider. Some policies give you the option of choosing between having the replacement cost of your individual items be either the value of the item in today’s retail market, or the value of the item at the time of loss, with depreciation and currency inflation taken into account. And finally, if it’s an especially expensive item, you can pay a higher deductible to bring down the premium cost.

Be sure to shop around for a great renters insurance quote through providers like CoverHound and to check what the individual maximum coverage limits are. Remember that the higher the coverage, the costlier the monthly premiums you’ll have to face.

Liability Coverage

Much like car owners use liability coverage to pay for damages they caused onto others, liability coverage covers you for damages incurred within your home onto others.

There are numerous scenarios where this would be handy. The most obvious one is a slip and fall. If your guest falls and injures themselves severely due to your negligence as a tenant, then you’re obliged legally to pay for their injuries. To avoid bringing the legal expenses of a personal injury lawyer into this, an insurance provider with renters insurance can cover the cost of this through liability coverage.

At the same time, if something else happens on your property that results in damages for someone else – such as an object like a ball thrown from your property onto someone else’s property, causing injury or property damage – then liability coverage still applies.

Additional Living Expenses

The final main point of financial protection offered by a renters insurance policy is meant for emergency purposes. When an accident, incident or catastrophe leaves you unable to return to your home and live in it, then your insurance provider may partially cover your cost of living if it exceeds your usual costs. Renters insurance doesn’t have to be expensive. Do your due diligence to shop around and you’ll find something that won’t break the bank.

Finding the right insurance provider for you can be a daunting task, but the best place to start is knowing how much insurance you really need.

Do I Need Comprehensive Coverage?

cheap new carsOne of the biggest challenges facing insurance shoppers is the glut of terminology paired with the lack of information that defines so much insurance marketing. Phrases like “comprehensive coverage” and “full coverage” are used commonly and interchangeably, but many consumers aren’t aware of the meaning of these words at all. This lack of understanding can be dangerous, but if you are looking to get a good deal on your insurance, informing yourself is the first step. Here, you can learn about comprehensive coverage and whether or not you need it.

Defining Comprehensive Coverage

In most states, drivers are required to carry liability insurance in order to protect other drivers. Studies show that 22 percent of drivers who have liability insurance choose to forgo comprehensive coverage. Many drivers assume that comprehensive—or “full coverage”—covers any and all liabilities. Comprehensive insurance is actually coverage beyond liability that protects you from events other than a collision. If your car is flooded or vandalized, for example, comprehensive insurance will often provide coverage for the damages.

Who Needs Comprehensive Coverage?

Since the risks of car ownership are most commonly associated with driving, many people don’t want to spend more on coverage for other risks. The likelihood of sustaining a collision, of course, seems far higher than your car being stolen or setting on fire. Comprehensive coverage is much like home insurance, however, in that your area and other specific factors will determine what the best choice is. If flooding and vandalism are common occurrences in your area, insuring your car and your home against these threats is probably a wise decision.

Assess the Value of Your Car

In addition to assessing your level of risk, you should determine the value of your vehicle to decide whether or not you need comprehensive coverage. Even if you live in a low-risk area, if you have a new or otherwise high-value car, the cost of comprehensive coverage may be well worth the protection it provides. Some cars cost more to repair than others, so if damage would be particularly costly to you, choosing full coverage may be the best way to protect yourself and your car against damages.

If you want to learn more about policies, a qualified professional insurance agent can help you determine whether or not full coverage is the best option for you.

Comprehensive Coverage May Be Required

Comprehensive insurance is elective coverage in most cases, but in some places, it is a requirement. If you are leasing or financing a car, you will more than likely be required by your lender to provide proof of full insurance coverage. To do so, you may list them as a loss payee on your policy. In this case, your lender wants to ensure than their investment is protected, so you will have to pay for coverage to satisfy their requirements.

Most drivers in the United States carry full coverage in addition to their liability coverage, and it isn’t hard to see why. Though it is an additional expense, it is often a good investment than can prevent liability and protect you financially.