When I first got my bike, I called my friend’s insurance agent (didn’t specialize in motorcycle insurance) to get everything legitimate and squared away. I figured that he had done his homework, and opted for the best, most reasonably priced insurance for his vehicles. It turns out, he has his home owners insurance through this agency, and tacked on his bikes with the same company. This is where I went wrong. While it made sound financial sense for him, the total I was paying per year exceeded the low rates that motorcycle riders talk about. I was at a loss, and unfortunately, gave up the fight too easily….Bottom line, unlike every other purchase I make, I didn’t shop around. In my mind, the cost of insurance would be similar among carriers, therefore, I went with the easy choice, based on the recommendation by a friend, who has very different circumstances than my own. I recently bought a new bike, and when I spoke to my agent, was given a price that was astronomical. Clearly the purchase of a “sport touring” bike was not being differentiated from the more common “sport bike,” which are notoriously expensive to insure. I spoke to the agent, and she explained that the carrier strictly determines rates based on the VIN, and that my cost could not be adjusted.
I began shopping around online. There are many companies that have online quote forms, making it easy to check basic prices. I finally arrived at Dairyland Insurance, a company I have seen in a few Moto magazines that specializes in motorcycle insurance. The difference in prices was staggering. Granted, I was changing the previous policy coverage a bit, but even with these changes, the difference was so significant, I instantly felt stupid for having waited this long to shop around.
Word to the wise: motorcycle insurance is just like everything else, and worth shopping around for. Especially for something as specific as motorcycles, where the slightest difference in model numbers is easily overlooked by non-specialty companies.