Get on the road with a bike you love — without paying upfront.
Instead, compare your loan options to find the best terms. Just keep in mind that not every lender offers financing, so your search may take more time than you expected.
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How can I finance a motorcycle?
Much like financing a car loan, there are a few different ways you can get the money to pay for your motorcycle. The best option for you will depend on your financial situation and credit, as these will impact the interest you’re given and the amount your lender is willing to give you.
- Dealership financing. Many dealerships that sell motorcycles offer financing. It could be a good option if you haven’t been able to qualify for a loan elsewhere, or you just want to keep things in one place.
- Manufacturer financing. Manufacturers also offer financing for their motorcycles online or at a manufacturer store. However, you might not get the best deal on interest or loan terms when you choose this route.
- Online lenders. Some online lenders that offer car loans also allow you to use your funds for motorcycles and other related costs like licensing and registration.
- Bank and credit union loans. Some offer recreational vehicle loans, which typically come with highly competitive rates though it can take longer to process the application.
- Personal loans. You can use a personal loan to finance just about any purchase, including a motorcycle.
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How much do motorcycles cost?
What you pay for your motorcycle depends on if you want something new, used, high-performance or good for a beginner. You could find a used bike online for $1,000, or you could buy a brand new Ducati for more than $20,000.
These four models have been cited as some of the must-rides of the year. Keep in mind that both the MSRP and destination charge are flexible, so your price will vary.
|2019 Suzuki GSX250R||$4,599||$380|
|2018 Harley-Davidson Street Bob||$14,499||$390|
|2018 Kawasaki Z900RS||$10,999||$370|
|2019 Indian Scout Bobber||$11,999||Not stated|
|2019 Yamaha Niken||$15,999||$450|
How can I choose the right motorcycle loan?
While every loan is different, asking yourself these questions can help make your loan decision easier.
- What loan amount do you need? Check the minimum and maximum loan amounts when comparing your motorcycle loan options and only borrow as much as you need.
- What is the loan term? Motorcycle loans typically last two to three years, although you might be able to find financing as long as five years. You can use our monthly payment calculator to see how your loan term affects your monthly payment.
- Can you qualify for a secured or unsecured loan? Secured loans use your motorcycle as collateral to protect the lender in case of default. Unsecured loan, on the other hand require a healthy credit score and can offer larger loans with flexible payments.
- What interest rate will you get? Your interest rate is determined by your credit history and whether you choose a fixed or variable loan. Variable rates can fluctuate while fixed rates are set for the life of the loan.
- What fees will you pay? Lenders can charge fees upfront, or ongoing fees to keep you loan active. Read the fine print and terms of your loan before you sign on.
- Can I make extra payments? One way to bring down interest on your loan is to make extra payments when you can afford it. If you feel like you’ll be able to pay back the debt early, make sure your lender allows this or doesn’t charge any fees.
Before you apply, think about the actual cost of the loan — including all the fees and interest. Calculate your payments and consider the length of time it’ll take to pay back the loan to see if it realistically fits in your budget.
5 tips to help choose the right motorcycle
- Know the type of motorcycle you want. There’s a bike out there for everybody: Harley Davidson for cruisers, Ducati if you’re looking for speed, BMW touring bikes for longer travelers or even scooters for putting around the city.
- Check out the strength of the engine. When looking at motorcycles, consider your skill level. Motorcycles with higher CCs have more powerful engines and are suited for skilled riders — if you’re just starting out, 250 CCs will suffice.
- Decide if you want a new or used motorcycle. Consider the long-term commitment and if you’ll be riding for the next couple of years. If you’re buying your first motorcycle, consider buying a used bike and then upgrading when you’re sure its a hobby you’ll stick with.
- Test your ride. Like when you buy a car, take the bike for ride before you buy it. Think about how it handles, the acceleration and if there are any weird noises.
- Look up the title and service history. By reviewing the title history, you can determine if there were any recalls or major complaints about the make and model you’re looking at. The service history can provide you with a detailed list of maintenance to ensure the motorcycle was properly maintained.
Am I eligible for a motorcycle loan?
Eligibility criteria will differ between lenders, but in general, you’ll have to meet these three basic points to be considered eligible:
- You must be at least 18 years old
- You must be a US citizen or permanent resident
- You must have good to excellent credit
But don’t worry about your credit score as much. Even if you don’t have the best credit, you may still qualify for a loan.
How do I apply?
Like with eligibility criteria, the exact application steps vary by lender. However, most lenders will require the same basic information no matter what type of loan you’re applying for.
- Social Security number and valid photo ID
- Personal information, contact details and home address
- Employment details and income information
- Financial details such as assets, debts and liabilities
- Documentation proving income if you’re self-employed
- Registration details of the bike you intend to buy
What other costs will I need to consider when buying a motorcycle?
The cost of a motorcycle, like any vehicle, doesn’t stop after you make your purchase. You’ll have to consider how much it costs to ride it at the same time that you calculate the upfront cost.
- Insurance. Motorcycles require different insurance, and often, it can be more costly because of the risk that comes with riding with little protection. Before you make your purchase, see how much it will cost you to insure your bike.
- Licensing and registration. Some states have different licenses you need to apply for to ride a motorcycle. Registration is another issue that you’ll have to pay for, and this will depend on your state, city or county.
- Riding gear. You can’t go out on a motorcycle in just flip flops and shorts. To remain safe while out on the road, you’ll need to pay for gear. Helmets, leather jackets and sturdy boots are all part of the cost involved in your motorcycle.
A motorcycle can be a great way to get out on the open road, but many cost more than you could reasonably afford out-of-pocket. If this is the case, then a motorcycle loan can be helpful. While not every car loan lender covers motorcycles, it can be helpful to browse your loan options to see what kind of terms you can get when you apply.
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