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IPS / Lighthouse Insurance Group Blog: motorcycle insurance

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image of couple riding motorcycleBefore you set out on your motorcycle, take a look outside and think about where you will go. What conditions will you encounter on the way?

Navigating your bike means being aware of road conditions and the space around you. Remember, you face different circumstances when you ride your bike than when you drive a car. Riding your bike exposes you to the elements and to different risks on the road. You might expose yourself to extra insurance risks on your bike.

Keep aware when you ride, and be a conscientious biker.

1. Follow the Law

Every state has different requirements for motorcycle riders. Make sure you keep your bike’s registration and operating endorsements current. Also carry the appropriate insurance.

Make sure you obey all traffic laws just like any other driver. Do not speed, or drive recklessly. Remember that your bike is much more sensitive than the average car. It requires a skilled touch to keep on the road.

2. Stay aware of other drivers.

We all know that it is important to share the road with other drivers. Always stay aware of other people on the road. You pose a risk to them, and they pose a risk to you. You can’t expose other drivers to other risks, however, you can’t expect them to always be on the lookout for you.

If you collide with another driver, you do face extra risks. You could sustain severe injury based on the exposure of the bike as opposed to other traffic. Always make sure that you stay a safe distance from other traffic.

3. Wear proper gear

Most states require riders to wear certain safety gear when biking. However, requirements vary. The most important element of gear to consider is a helmet. You often should consider other gear like pads, riding boots, and insulated clothing.

4. Properly operate your bike’s signals

Some bikes come with driving signals, like the standard car. Make appropriate use of wipers, turn signals and lights when needed. Keep these systems in good working order.

As a bike operator, you might have to learn manual hand signals as part of state driving requirements. Learn these signals and use them appropriately while you ride.

5. Watch the weather

Most bikers do not ride in inclement weather. Rain, snow and wind could all compromise the operational safety of the bike. Wet roads could cause the bike to slip while you ride and increase your risks of accidents.

Furthermore, make sure that you don’t expose yourself to weather risks like storms. Your exposure on the bike means your safety is at risk.

Always take care to operate your bike safely in the best conditions. Doing so can help you reduce your risks on the roads. It also poses a great assurance to your insurance liabilities.

Insurance Planning Service can help you get the correct Michigan motorcycle insurance for you. Call us at (800) 220-5582 for more information.

Posted 2:09 PM

image of motorcycle wheelsAs a motorcyclist, the warm weather incites your desire to put the rubber to the road. After having your motorcycle in storage throughout the winter months, the urge to ride your motorcycle is strong. However, it’s during these times when motorcycle theft is at its highest. With more motorcycles being stolen, it’s prudent to discover simple ways you can protect your motorcycle and prevent a motorcycle insurance claim.

Use Multiple Locks

One of the easiest, yet most effective, ways to protect your motorcycle is locking it down. There are many locks you can place on your motorcycle that are specifically designed to make it hard for thieves to steal your bike; however, there is strength in numbers. You should use multiple locks on your motorcycle to deter theft by using a steering lock, a chain lock and a disc lock to prevent the criminally-minded from attempting to steal your motorcycle.

Park in Well-Populated Areas

When you are out and about, you can’t always have your bike in view. However, you can have other people look out for your bike by parking it in a well-populated area. With many people subscribing to the “see something, say something” ideology, good Samaritans will help you protect your motorcycle when you are not in direct view of your motorcycle.

Leverage the Power of Street Cameras

More and more, police officers and others are relying on the power of cameras. Traffic cameras and retail cameras line the streets with many people unaware of their existence. You can use these cameras to help you deter the theft of your motorcycle. By parking near a camera, anything that happens to your motorcycle will be caught on tape. If your motorcycle is damaged or stolen, you have a sound case against the responsible party when you’re armed with video surveillance.

Much like you, motorcycle thieves come out when they weather warms. They prey on unsuspecting motorcycle owners who are out enjoying their bikes. You don’t have to be a victim of motorcycle theft. By following these simple rules, you can prevent the theft of your motorcycle.

We’ve got you covered. Call Insurance Planning Service at (800) 220-5582 for more information on Michigan motorcycle insurance.

Also Read: Lower Your Cost for Motorcycle Insurance

Posted 6:32 PM

motorcycleMotorcycle insurance is not only required under your state's insurance laws, but for most bikers, it makes sense to buy a policy. Just like insuring a car, you can get coverage for collision, theft and vandalism. More importantly, bodily injury and property damage liability coverage can protect you against personal exposure to large financial judgments if you injure someone or damage their property and are found guilty in a court of law.

It’s easy to see why it makes sense to buy motorcycle insurance, but it also makes sense to try and pay the lowest possible price for the coverage you need. Insurance companies consider a number of different variables before determining your premium, including the following:

  • Age: Younger drivers present a higher risk.
  • Gender: Males tend to be more reckless on the road.
  • Marital Status: Married people are statistically more responsible.
  • Make/Model/Year: Is the motorcycle more likely to be in a crash or stolen? 
  • Driving Record: Accidents, tickets and other violations may increase your premium.

Some of these variables, like age and gender, you cannot do anything about. For the others, where you can exercise some care and control, you can take actions that can help lower your premium. Take a look at some of the ways you can lower your cost for motorcycle insurance. 


Ask your independent insurance agent about the different types of discounts being offered by different insurance companies. You probably will not qualify for all of them, but taking advantage of the ones for which you are eligible can cut serious dollars off your premium.

·         Good Driver Discount: Keep a clean driving record for at least three years.

·         Homeowner Discount: If you own a home and a motorcycle, you can qualify for a discount because historic data shows that homeowners are less likely to file a claim than those who do not own a home.

·         Helmet Discount: Stay safe and your premium may also drop if you always wear your helmet (not required in all states). 

·         Anti-theft Discount: Install an alarm or other anti-theft device.

·         Upfront Payment Discount: When you buy a policy, pay a lump sum instead of choosing a monthly payment plan. 

Other Ways to Save

  • Buy a practical motorcycle instead of a high-powered, expensive model.
  • Choose a higher deductible on your motorcycle insurance policy.
  • Consider dropping your collision coverage if you ride an older bike.

Learn how much you could save. Call Insurance Planning Service at (734) 421-9900 for more information on Michigan motorcycle insurance.

Motorcycle RidersMotorcyclists are known for taking pride in their bikes. But just because you love your bike doesn't mean you love paying for motorcycle insurance. Of course, you know how valuable the coverage is, but wouldn’t it be nice if it cost less? The good news is that there are plenty of ways to save on motorcycle insurance!

Your motorcycle itself is a factor in premium calculation:
  • Pricier bikes cost more to insure than more modest bikes because of higher repair expenses.
  • Custom accessories and paint jobs increase the value of your bike, so a bike with standard accessories and paint costs less to insure.
How and when you ride contributes to premium prices:
  • Spending more time on the road statistically increases your chances of being involved in an accident, so seasonal or weekend riders may pay less for coverage than year-round riders.
  • Motorcyclists with clean driving records typically pay less than those with a history of tickets and accidents.
  • Your method of motorcycle storage is also a factor. Motorcyclists who store their bike in a garage or shed may pay less than those who store their bike outdoors, where the risk of theft and vandalism is higher.
You can also talk to your independent insurance agent about these additional savings:
  • Bundling your motorcycle insurance with your other personal policies (home, auto, life etc.) is the easiest way to save money across your entire insurance portfolio.
  • Paying annually or biannually, rather than monthly, is a great way to eliminate the extra expense of processing fees that are tacked on by many insurers.
  • Many insurers offer a variety of discounts, from customer loyalty to safe driving discounts. Ask your agent if you qualify for these valuable savings.
We'll help you save today. Call Insurance Planning Service at (734) 421-9900 for more information on Michigan motorcycle insurance.

Car-deer crashes are a year-round problem in Michigan.  During 2010, there were 55,867 reported car-deer crashes in this state alone. That translates into one car-deer crash every nine minutes.

These crashes are at least a $130 million a year problem.  The average car-deer crash causes about $2,100 in damage, usually to the front end, often leaving the vehicle undriveable.

Car-deer crashes are not only costly, they are deadly.  In 2010, 11 persons were killed in crashes with deer.  Another 1,433 were injured.  The most serious crashes occur when motorists swerve to avoid a deer and hit another vehicle or fixed object, such as a tree.

Several factors are combining to make the car-deer crash problem grow. Urban growth spreading into deer habitat and a deer population that is four times higher than 1970 combine to force deer into smaller areas and into contact with people, often in collisions with vehicles.  The deer herd in this state is estimated at about 1.7 million.

More than half of all car-deer crashes occur in southern lower Michigan.  In 2010, The five counties with the most vehicle-deer crashes were: Kent (1,976), Oakland (1,836), Jackson (1,779), Calhoun (1,618) and Lapeer (1,321).

Here are some tips to lessen your chances of being involved/injured in a car-deer crash:
-Stay aware, awake and sober.
-Remember car-deer crashes occur all year, but be especially alert in the spring and fall and at dusk and dawn.
-Pay attention to deer crossing and speed limit signs.  They are placed at known deer crossing areas to alert you to the possible presence of deer.
-Deer are herd animals and frequently travel in single file. If you see one whitetail cross the road, chances are there will be more.
-Remember to always wear a safety belt.  It is the best defense against injury in any roadway crash.

If a crash is unavoidable:
-Don't swerve.  Brake firmly, stay in your lane, hold onto the steering wheel and bring your vehicle to a controlled stop.
-Pull off the road.  Turn on your emergency flashers and be cautious of other traffic if you leave your vehicle.
-Don't attempt to remove a deer from the roadway, unless you are convinced it is dead.  An injured deer's sharp hooves can easily hurt you.
-Report the crash to the nearest police agency and your insurance agent.  Car-deer crashes are typically covered under the comprehensive portion of the insurance policy.
-Police or DNR conservation officers may issue you a permit if you want to keep the deer.

If you are on a motorcycle:
-Be alert for deer whenever they ride.  Deer-vehicle crashes happen in urban, suburban and rural areas.
-Slow down. Decreasing speed gives a motorcyclist more time to spot an animal and react.
-Cover the brakes to reduce reaction time.
-Use high beam headlights and additional driving light when possible.
I-f riding in a group, spread out riders in a staggered formation. If one rider hits a deer, this will lessen the chance that other riders will be involved.
-Wear protective gear at all times.

To check up on your insurance policies, contact the experienced professionals at Insurance Planning Service today at 800-220-5582 or use our online contact form.

Article source: IIM
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Lighthouse Group Main Office in Grand Rapids, MI
Mailing Address | P.O. Box 530009, Livonia, MI 48153

Phone: 734.421.9900 | Toll Free: 800.220.5582 | Fax: 734.421.9911

Also serving these Detroit area communities in Michigan: Livonia, Farmington Hills, Ann Arbor, Southfield, Plymouth, Canton, Westland, Northville, Novi, Dearborn, South Lyon & Walled Lake