Used Motorcycle Prices - How to Determine Used Motorcycle Values - Price Guides

When advertising your used motorcycles for sale, it helps to know current used motorcycle prices. Perhaps the first step that should be taken before posting a classified should be to visit one of the online price guides to see what your motorcycle is worth.

I’m very sorry to say that there are times when a biker gets a rather unpleasant surprise when they get ready to sell. It’s a real downer to learn that their motorcycle’s value is much less than they imagined. Used motorcycle values can fluctuate wildly determined by supply and demand and lots of other stuff that actually takes you right back to supply and demand so let’s just not waste time with all of that.

After running Strike Lightning for a little over two years and having seen so many of our friends get blasted with comments on their classifieds for asking way too much for their used motorcycles for sale or even worse selling them too cheap, I thought I would tell you about some used motorcycle price guides where you can get a starting point for figuring your motorcycle’s value.

Before you visit one of the online price guides I want to give you a WARNING that the price quotes are probably going to look ridiculously CHEAP! Before you freak out and start kicking gravel, those prices are what comparable motorcycles have been sold for in your area BUT they may have had much less chrome and fewer accessories that your custom motorcycle has on it. That being said, unless you lucked up and bought a motorcycle that became a highly sought after collectible model overnight (don’t bet on it) chances are that you are going to have to eat some depreciation just like when you sell a used car.

Generally speaking, the price that a motorcycle has sold for provides a reference point, but on KBB as well as other price guides mileage, make and model of the bike, custom features like paint, chrome and accessories as well as the condition of the motorcycle play a part in determining value. In a perfect world, this formula should give us used motorcycle prices but these guides, though very helpful are also very subjective to market conditions, location of the motorcycle and even the time of the year. As an example, if a Suzuki Hayabusa Turbo is for sale in January it stands to reason that it will sell for the best price if located in southern California where there is an extended riding season over say New Jersey where biker would freeze his ass off trying to ride anytime after October or before April or May.

This is where figuring used motorcycle prices gets tricky. To put it bluntly, don’t expect to recoup your investment on custom parts and accessories that you installed. For instance, the custom exhaust that you thought added so much to the look and sound of your Harley may not be another guy’s taste at all. In fact, this potential buyer might the of the mind that you reduce your asking price because the original exhaust system is not still on the bike. If you still have the factory pipes, it’s a good idea to indicate in the description of the motorcycle that they will come to the new owner. This small detail often makes a big difference as to how long it takes to sell a motorcycle as well as the price the owner gets for it.

As far as accessories go, you might want to consider removing items like saddlebags and selling them separately or offering them as an option for a price.

It’s advisable to fix all of the motorcycle’s flaws and problems before advertising it for sale. However there are those times when it’s just not worth your trouble to run it into the local motorcycle shop and have that being in the paint on the fuel tank fixed. The way to handle this is to get an estimate of how much it would cost to repair the motorcycle and deduct that from the its value.

The two online price guides that I have found to be very helpful are KBB and the online NADA guide. But when determining the trade-in value of a used motorcycle locally, I prefer to ring up a loan officer at my local bank and ask for the loan value of the bike I’m looking at.

In closing, used motorcycle prices that you find in ANY of the guides are just that, a guide. If a buyer doesn’t want to pay that much for a bike, there’s not much you can do about it other than to tell them to go jump in the lake and keep it to ride yourself which may be the best idea you’ve had all day.

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