Sara Routhier, Managing Editor of Features and Outreach, has professional experience as an educator, SEO specialist, and content marketer. She has over five years of experience in the insurance industry. As a researcher, data nerd, writer, and editor she strives to curate educational, enlightening articles that provide you with the must-know facts and best-kept secrets within the overwhelming worl...

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Joel Ohman is the CEO of a private equity-backed digital media company. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, author, angel investor, and serial entrepreneur who loves creating new things, whether books or businesses. He has also previously served as the founder and resident CFP® of a national insurance agency, Real Time Health Quotes. He also has an MBA from the University of South Florida. ...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder, CFP®

UPDATED: Sep 20, 2012

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Obtaining a motorcycle loan is similar to getting a car loan since both are automotive vehicles commonly sold at dealerships. Borrowers can expedite their application process by being prepared and informed prior to meeting a lender.

The first step borrowers should take is to shop around for a motorcycle. When looking for that perfect bike, borrowers should think about how much money they can put towards the down payment on a motorcycle and how much they are willing to borrow. Ideally, borrowers should take out as little as possible since all borrowed money carries interest.

Applicants with pockmarked credit histories and low credit scores will almost certainly end up with high interest financing.

Regardless of credit scores though, borrowers should contact lenders to compare interest rates and policies. While the availability of motorcycle loans is not as prevalent as auto loans, banks and credit unions usually offer them. If borrowers do find an accommodating bank or credit union, they might find the offers carry high interest rates. This is due to the fact that riding a motorcycle is more risky when compared to driving a car. Additionally, motorcycles are easier to steal when compared to cars due to their smaller size.

Buyers should also look to borrow a motorcycle loan that has a fixed interest rate. This would prevent changing monthly payments as a result of fluctuating interest rates.

If borrowers are having difficulty locating a motorcycle lender, they may consider dealer financing since motorcycle dealerships almost always have motorcycle loans available to customers.

There is a downside to dealer financing though: dealership loans often come with costly financing charges.

If borrowers would rather purchase a bike directly from a motorcycle manufacturer, also known as Original Equipment Manufacturers, they may be in luck. Some OEMs offer financing promotions in order to encourage direct sales.