How To Sell A Motorcycle With A Loan? 7 Simple & Easy Steps

Selling a motorcycle that is still under a loan may seem like a daunting task but with the right knowledge and preparation, it can be a smooth and successful process.

In this guide on selling a motorcycle with a loan, we’ll take you through each step of the process to help you navigate it effectively and improve your chances of making a sale.

7 Steps To Sell A Motorcycle With A Loan

Steps To Sell A Motorcycle With A Loan

Selling a motorcycle that still has an outstanding loan can be a bit more complicated compared to selling a vehicle that is fully paid off.

However, it is still possible to sell a motorcycle with an outstanding loan.

Here are the steps you must follow:

1. Assessing the Loan Situation

Understanding the specifics of your loan is essential before starting the selling process.

This step will help you determine the outstanding balance and any potential prepayment penalties that may impact your selling strategy.

Understanding the loan terms

Review the loan agreement to familiarize yourself with the terms, interest rate and repayment schedule.

After reading this information, you will have a thorough understanding of your financial responsibilities.

Determining the outstanding balance

Contact your lender or refer to your loan statement to determine the remaining balance on your motorcycle loan.

This figure will serve as a baseline for pricing and negotiations during the selling process.

Checking for prepayment penalties

Some loans come with prepayment penalties, which are fees charged for paying off the loan before the scheduled end date.

Review your loan agreement or contact your lender to ascertain if any such penalties apply.

This knowledge will help you make informed decisions about paying off the loan during the selling process.

2. Preparing the Motorcycle for Sale

A well-presented motorcycle increases its desirability and can positively impact the selling price.

Investing time and effort into preparing your motorcycle for sale can significantly improve your chances of attracting potential buyers.

Cleaning and detailing the motorcycle

Give your motorcycle a thorough cleaning, both inside and out.

Remove any dirt, grime or debris and make sure to polish and shine all visible surfaces.

Pay attention to areas like the tires, rims, seat and engine.

Making necessary repairs or maintenance

Fix any mechanical issues or address minor repairs before listing your motorcycle for sale.

Ensure that all components are in good working condition including the brakes, lights and engine.

If possible, gather maintenance records to showcase the motorcycle’s history of care and upkeep.

Gathering all relevant documentation

Collect all essential paperwork related to your motorcycle, including

  • the title,
  • registration documents,
  • service records, and
  • warranty information.

Having these documents readily available will streamline the selling process and instill confidence in potential buyers.

3) Determining the Motorcycle’s Value

To set an appropriate selling price, it’s essential to determine the fair market value of your motorcycle. Consider various factors such as the make, model, condition, mileage and any upgrades or modifications.

Researching the market value

Utilize online platforms, motorcycle valuation websites and classified ads to research the current market value of motorcycles similar to yours.

Take into account the year, make, model and condition to get an accurate estimate of your motorcycle’s worth.

Considering the condition and mileage

Assess the overall condition of your motorcycle, including any wear and tear.

Higher mileage and a well-maintained motorcycle generally command higher prices.

Be honest about any imperfections to manage buyer expectations.

Adjusting for upgrades or modifications

If you have made any upgrades or modifications to your motorcycle, factor them into the selling price.

Unique features or enhancements can increase its value, but it’s important to be reasonable and consider the preferences of potential buyers.

4) Advertising and Marketing

Effectively promoting your motorcycle for sale is crucial to attract potential buyers.

Leverage various marketing channels and create a compelling listing that highlights your motorcycle’s key features.

Choosing the right platforms to reach potential buyers

Research and select online platforms or classified websites that cater to motorcycle enthusiasts and potential buyers in your area.

Ensure your listing reaches the right audience.

Creating a compelling listing with high-quality photos

Write a detailed and accurate description of your motorcycle, including its specifications, maintenance history and any unique selling points.

Include high-quality photos from different angles to showcase your motorcycle’s visual appeal.

Highlighting the motorcycle’s features and unique selling points

Emphasize the strengths of your motorcycle such as mileage, recent maintenance or special accessories.

Clear and concise communication about its condition and desirable features will attract serious buyers.

5) Negotiating with Potential Buyers

Once potential buyers start showing interest, it’s important to:

  • handle inquiries,
  • test rides, and
  • negotiations with professionalism and confidence.

Ask relevant questions to gauge the seriousness of potential buyers and ensure they have a genuine interest in purchasing your motorcycle.

Respond promptly to inquiries and schedule test rides for serious buyers.

Establish ground rules for test rides, such as requiring a valid driver’s license and proof of motorcycle insurance.

Consider your minimum acceptable price and any flexibility you have regarding offers. Remain firm but open to reasonable offers to facilitate a mutually beneficial agreement.

6) Paying Off the Loan

Before finalizing the sale, it’s crucial to clear the outstanding loan balance and obtain the necessary paperwork to transfer ownership to the buyer smoothly.

Contacting the lender for payoff information

Reach out to your lender to obtain the exact payoff amount, which may differ from the remaining balance due to any additional interest or fees.

Determining the best payment method

Discuss the payment method with the buyer and ensure it aligns with the loan payoff process.

Options may include a direct payment to the lender or paying off the loan with the sale proceeds.

Ensuring the loan is fully paid off and obtaining the necessary paperwork

Verify with your lender that the loan has been paid off in full.

Once confirmed, obtain a release of lien or other relevant documents that indicate the loan has been satisfied.

These documents will be necessary to transfer ownership to the buyer.

7) Completing the Sale

As the final step, completing the sale involves transferring ownership, providing necessary documentation and addressing any remaining paperwork or legalities.

Transferring ownership and registration

Complete the necessary paperwork to transfer the ownership of the motorcycle to the buyer.

Provide the signed title and any additional documents required by your local Department of Motor Vehicles.

Providing a bill of sale and any other required documents

Create a bill of sale that includes all relevant information such as the sale price, buyer & seller details and motorcycle specifics.

Ensure both parties sign the document for legal purposes.

Check with your local authorities or consult legal advice to determine any additional documents required in your jurisdiction.

Handling any remaining paperwork or legalities

Follow up with the buyer and ensure they have completed the necessary registration and insurance processes.

Cancel any insurance policies or registrations associated with the motorcycle under your name to avoid future liabilities.


How do I sell my motorcycle with negative equity?

To sell a motorcycle with negative equity, you’ll need to pay off the remaining loan balance out of pocket or negotiate with the lender to transfer the debt to the buyer.

Can i sell my motorcycle if it’s on finance?

Yes, you can sell your motorcycle if it’s on finance, but you will need to pay off the remaining loan balance before transferring ownership to the buyer.

How to put a lien on a motorcycle?

To put a lien on a motorcycle, you typically need to file a lien with the appropriate government agency or department responsible for vehicle registration.

Is a motorcycle loan considered an auto loan?

No, a motorcycle loan is not considered an auto loan. It is a separate category of financing specifically for motorcycles.

What is the best form of payment when selling a motorcycle with loan?

Cash or a certified bank check are the best forms of payment when selling a motorcycle with loan, as they provide immediate and secure funds.

How long is a typical motorcycle loan?

A typical motorcycle loan typically lasts between 3 to 5 years.

What is a motorcycle loan called?

A motorcycle loan is commonly referred to as a “motorcycle financing” or simply a “motorcycle loan.”

Can i sell my motorcycle back to the dealer?

Yes, you can sell your motorcycle back to the dealer but the terms and conditions may vary depending on the dealer.


Selling a motorcycle with a loan can initially seem overwhelming, but by following these essential steps, you can navigate the process with confidence and achieve a successful sale.

Remember to:

  • assess your loan situation,
  • prepare your motorcycle for sale,
  • determine its value accurately,
  • market it effectively,
  • negotiate professionally,
  • pay off the loan and
  • complete the sale legally and smoothly.

With careful planning and attention to detail, you can sell your financed motorcycle and move forward with your next two-wheeled adventure.

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