Most states require motorcycle owners to have at least some motorcycle insurance coverage, and depending on the rider, bike and where someone lives, rates can be expensive. The good news is some carriers offer discounts on motorcycle premiums to owners that have anti-theft devices.
Devices That Get You A Discount
Not all anti-theft devices for motorcycles (or mopeds and scooters covered under motorcycle policies) qualify for discounts. Generally, only location tracking and disabling systems can help owners save about 10% on their premium.
That savings might be significant, considering the average cost of motorcycle insurance in the U.S. is $519. Some bikes might also cost much more to insure, depending on the rider, coverage and the motorcycle itself.
Location tracking systems (possible through either radio or GPS) usually do more than just show an owner where their motorcycle is located. They frequently include notification systems that send text messages, emails or some other alert to the owner when a bike is touched. Some even send notifications or sound an alarm when anyone is too close to a bike for more than a short period of time.
But the most important feature some tracking systems have is the ability for law enforcement agencies to access them and help owners retrieve their bike. This feature of some tracking systems is crucial because a rider should never attempt to reclaim anything from a thief on their own. That could be very dangerous and also disrupt a potential criminal investigation.
Anti-theft devices that can disable a motorcycle and render it inoperable also might qualify an insurance policy for a discount. There are two types and they usually work in conjunction with a location tracking system.
Active disabling devices must be engaged by the owner of a motorcycle, who would turn off their motorcycle remotely after it was stolen or due to suspicious activity. The only disadvantage is that active devices are reactionary responses by the owner of a bike. If an owner isn't aware something is wrong, they won't know to disable their motorcycle. By the time they realize something is wrong, it might be too late - a bike's system might be compromised.
Passive disabling devices are more sophisticated. Certain triggers cause passive disabling devices to activate automatically. For example, most passive disabling systems will turn a motorcycle off after a short amount of time if the keychain sensor is not present. The advantage these have over active systems is they can enable themselves and protect the bike without necessary assistance from an owner.
Why Other Anti-Theft Devices Are Important
Most anti-theft devices do not qualify owners for a motorcycle discount. However, they can have an indirect impact on the cost of your motorcycle insurance policy.
The more security devices a bike has, the better. They deter thieves from attempting to steal a bike and improve the chances of a thief failing to nab one they're trying to. This is important to a policyholder with comprehensive motorcycle coverage, which would replace a bike if it is stolen.
Filing a comprehensive insurance claim will replace a motorcycle, but there is a chance that a claim of that severity will cause the cost of an owner's premiums to go up.