Affording your Dream Bike: Top Tips and Advice
Whether you’ve bought a bike before or this is the first time you’ve taken the plunge, you will undoubtedly have many questions to ask yourself before you head to the dealers. ‘What sort of bike is my perfect bike?’, ‘Is it a sensible buy?’, and ‘How will I pay for it?’ are all legitimate questions that you should have answers to before you buy.
While owning a motorcycle is dream for some, it’s certainly not for everyone. Any motorbike enthusiast will know what sort of bike they’re suited to in terms of displacement, weight and engine size – all of these will have to be taken into consideration before you buy your dream bike. Whether it’s a Kawasaki or a BMW S1000 superbike, or you’re a lover of the American Harley Davidson Roadster, whose roar you can hear for miles, you can’t just run out and slam the money on the counter. There are things you need to think about carefully first.
How will you afford it?
Unless you’ve been saving for years, or you have a bike to part exchange, chances of having the money up-front are slim. It’s even more doubtful that you would be able to justify rinsing your savings to buy the bike when your other half is saying no. So, how will you afford it?
Before you do anything, head online to a site where you can perform a credit rating check, and see what your chances of being granted finance are. Many bike dealers, similarly to car dealers, will happily provide finance options to those who can afford the payments, and they will perform a credit check as part of the process. While each lender has different criteria, there’s no point getting excited about the bike of your dreams if you’re likely to fail this essential check, so arm yourself with this information first.
If you do choose to head down the finance route, make sure you read and understand the small print associated with the deal. Often, the advertised APR will be different for you, depending on your individual circumstances – if there’s an advertised 3.9% APR, don’t believe that this will be your APR – this is just representative. You may also be required to pay a deposit – it’s not usually a high amount, but you need to make sure you can afford this upfront. Most of all, make sure that you will be able to keep up with the monthly finance repayments as falling into arrears could seriously damage your financial wellbeing and impact your credit score, too.
Getting the best deal
Make sure you shop around to get the best deal. Perhaps there’s a dealer who will part exchange your current bike, or the dealership provides some incentives as part of the purchase, such as cashback offers or free gifts. Don’t automatically buy from the first trader you see – chances are, they won’t be the cheapest option. Comparing prices online is a good way to find out the going rate for any particular model.
Another great way of being able to afford your dream bike would be to consider buying it used. Approved used bikes can fall under finance agreements too, so keep an eye out for them. It’s well-known that vehicles are more expensive on a forecourt – as soon as they have been driven a few miles, their value falls. Take a look at the used options available to save yourself some readies.
Once you have your finances sorted and your dream bike chosen, don’t forget insurance. Bike insurance is vital before you take to the road, so make sure that it’s in place. Once that’s sorted, there’s nothing stopping you from getting on your bike – literally – and enjoying the freedom of owning your own motorcycle.