If you are feeling the call of the open road, and the ability to ride it without being “trapped” inside a vehicle then purchasing a motorcycle is likely in your future. But knowing which bike to buy is a bit more than just going to your closest motorcycle store and making a purchase. The wise rookie rider will have taken time to do their homework. This research is vital to selecting a bike that suits your needs and goals.

So, what should this home entail?   Here are some of the most important things to consider when buying your first motorcycle.

How to Purchase a Motorcycle for the First Time

1. Take a Motorcycle Safety Foundation course.

Like taking Driver’s Ed, this course is designed to teach motorcycle safety and give you the skills you need to ride.

2. The Cost of the Bike

Understand that the cost of the bike is more than the amount you pay for it. Beyond the investment of the bike, you will need to consider the cost of insurance, maintenance, equipment, gear, and fuel. Each of these elements can come with hefty price tags. And the better the quality, the bigger the cost. One way to save a bit on upkeep costs is by choosing to use synthetic oil, lube, and other fluids. You can get these from your AMSOIL dealer, Lifetime Oil.  Check what’s right for your motorcycle here.

3. Consider buying used rather than new.

This is especially important if you have minimal experience on the back of a bike. A used bike is easier to recoup the majority of your cost with than with a brand-new one.

4. Determine what size bike suits you.

Motorcycles can be classified as sports bikes, standard or “naked” bikes, and cruisers. The sports bike, as you may guess, is designed with speed at the track in mind. It can be uncomfortable to ride for long distances and can be tough on your back, hands, and wrists. Cruisers have lower seats, higher handlebars, forward foot pegs, and are usually heavier. This makes them more difficult to control- especially for the novice rider. The naked bike will have a more upright seat, and is lighter weight, making it perfect for the new rider to control.

5. Bring a friend.Motorcycle

When you begin looking at used bikes be sure to bring along an experienced rider. They will know what to look for and can identify any aspects of the bike that would make it a good or bad investment.

6. Ask about the maintenance history.

When you begin looking at motorcycles, find out what type of maintenance has been done. Many experienced riders will have a logbook. Ask to peruse it to see any upgrades, modifications, and maintenance items like oil changes, filter replacements, and other work.

7. Check all the paperwork!

When buying used, and especially from someone you don’t personally know, be sure that all paperwork is valid and up to date. Check the vehicle identification number, do a property search to make sure there are no liens against the bike, and talk to the police department to ensure that the bike is not stolen. If any of these reveals negative info, find another seller.

Buying a motorcycle is not something to be done without research. But once you have done your due diligence, you will be ready to set off on all the adventures you have dreamed about. So, what will it be? Whether it’s an Indian, a Honda, or Harley there is plenty of excitement to be had.