Many people dream of owning a motorcycle. They easily picture themselves cruising along their block, waving at their envious neighbors. Unfortunately, very few actually turn this dream into a reality. You want to be one of the chosen who actually make their motorcycle dreams come true. Let our guide help you save for that dream bike.
Start by looking at the average cost of motorcycles. Next, educate yourself on the specific one that you want. Find forums devoted to the love of motorcycles, and ones specifically devoted to different types of riders. Post questions in the forum to learn more about buying used motorcycles. Scan through older posts as well.
Read through Kelley Blue Book and Cycle Trader for more info on pricing and specific issues to look for when buying certain motorcycles. Conduct an exhaustive research on them until you feel like you’re a motorcycle expert.
Create a Budget Plan
Calculate the cost of your dream bike, plus the cost of insurance, gear, oil changes, and any repairs. Use this as your minimum savings amount, but plan to save an additional couple hundred dollars for emergency motorcycle expenses.
Use websites like Mint to plan how to reach your money goals, while monitoring your expenses and paying bills. Be realistic about your savings goals. If you only make $1,000 a month and want to buy a $7,000 motorcycle, do not expect to buy it within 6 months without taking on extra work and side gigs.
When calculating the cost of insurance, use the DMV’s motorcycle insurance list to help you get discounts.
Make Ruthless Expense Cuts
Take inventory of all your expenses. Spend a few hours making a list of all the revenue you generate and your bills. After that, evaluate the importance of each additional expense. For example, decide if you really need premium cable when you also subscribe to Netflix or Hulu. Ask yourself if eating out at a 4-star restaurant every week is really worth it.
Next, look at ways to lower your current expenses or bills. Talk to your credit card company about lowering your APR. Use Groupon coupons whenever you shop at high-end stores such as Brooks Brothers. Eat more store brand food.
Pay in Cash, or Only Apply for a Small Loan
Always pay in cash when possible. You save more in the long run because you don’t have to worry about interest rates. However, if you must take out a loan, start by reviewing your credit history.
Request a credit report to search for any errors. Any blemishes on your credit report, even a small one, can greatly hurt your financial prospects. Regularly review your credit report to catch issues in advance.
When approaching a bank or credit union for a loan, bring your full financial history, including a current check stub and proof of past payments. Keep your loan amount request small. Ask for less than the motorcycle costs, so that your loan stays at a manageable amount and your chances of approval increase. Cover the rest of the motorcycle cost with cash.
Buy in the Fall
Motorcyclists increase the price of their bikes in the summer. In the fall, people use their motorcycles less, and may need quick cash for school or the holidays. Therefore, aim to buy your bike in the fall. You’ll have more time to save for it and repair it. When the following summer arrives, you’ll be ready to cruise on your new motorcycle.