Tips to sell your motorcycle

Looking to sell your bike? Here are some things to consider.

Woman taking a photo of her motorcycle with her phone.

If you've been thinking "it's time to sell my bike," there are a few things you can do to prepare. These tips can help you conduct a smooth, safe sale.

Prep your motorcycle for sale

  • Start your motorcycle, make sure it runs smoothly and is mechanically fit. Consider having a mechanic check the bike over and provide a receipt to share with possible buyers.
  • Many buyers prefer motorcycles left in stock form. If you've added personalized pieces, replace them with the original stock parts or make the original parts you removed available with the sale.
  • Thoroughly clean and detail your motorcycle.
  • Take photos of your bike against an uncluttered background and from different angles. You'll also want to take photos of the bike's mileage and any damage it may have.

Determine the value of your motorcycle

You may want to check pricing guides, like Red Book or NADA, or online motorcycle forums. Remember to be realistic about the price you're asking. Potential buyers will probably want to negotiate your price. Be ready with a lowest offer figure. Or, if you don't want to negotiate, list the price as "firm" in the sales listing.

Choose a sales process

You can use newspaper ads, magazines, online sites or your local classifieds to list your bike. Another option is to consign the sale to a local motorcycle or car dealer or use motorcycle auctions like Mecum Auction. And, make sure to have all the pertinent documents, like title and service history.

Pick a safe meeting place

You may not want potential buyers coming to your home or knowing where you live. Instead, pick a safe, public location like the parking lot of a local business. You can also check with your local police department to see if they offer their parking lot as a safe place to conduct these meetings.

Host a safe test drive

Test driving a motorcycle is a little different than test driving a car because you likely can't ride along with the potential buyer. That's why many people have money in hand before you allow any test rides. This may include some type of written and signed sales agreement stating if the potential buyer isn't satisfied after the test drive, and the motorcycle isn't damaged, the money will be refunded. Always make sure the person test driving your bike is licensed and experienced. You may want to take a photo of their driver's license and the vehicle they came in, just in case. Before any test drive, check with your insurance agent to make sure you're covered should anything happen while a potential driver is going for a test drive.

After the sale

When your bike is sold, don't forget to remove your license plates if they don't stay with the vehicle in your state. And, contact your insurance agent to let them know about the sale and cancel your motorcycle insurance coverage.

These few simple steps can help you safely and successfully sell your motorcycle. Good luck!

The information in this article was obtained from various sources not associated with State Farm® (including State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company and its subsidiaries and affiliates). While we believe it to be reliable and accurate, we do not warrant the accuracy or reliability of the information. State Farm is not responsible for, and does not endorse or approve, either implicitly or explicitly, the content of any third party sites that might be hyperlinked from this page. The information is not intended to replace manuals, instructions or information provided by a manufacturer or the advice of a qualified professional, or to affect coverage under any applicable insurance policy. These suggestions are not a complete list of every loss control measure. State Farm makes no guarantees of results from use of this information.
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