First things first, prices on EVERYTHING are through the roof. It doesn’t matter if you’re fertilizing a field, getting a tank of gas, or buying a drink at the store, it’s ALL gone up.
Plenty of folks are struggling, and I’m willing to bet a few bikes are going to be sold off this year because life is getting g too expensive.
It’s not the bike, it’s how we spend money.
Before you go and sell off your hobby, or the project you’ve been working on for years, take a few minutes to finish reading this post. It might keep your scoot where it belongs…
For starters, you need to think about what your bike actually is.
If you sell it, what’s it actually worth? Chances are, not what you think it is. Sure, you might’ve paid $25,000 for it a few years ago, and maybe you own it free and clear, but what could you actually sell it for?
Money, for a lot of people right now, seems hard to get, and financing a used bike from a private seller hasn’t ever been easy. With that in mind, yes, on paper, it might be worth $15,000, but can – or will – anyone pay that?
When you factor in the aggravation of selling a bike, on Facebook or locally, and all the looky-loos and tire-kickers, you’re wasting a ton of time that could probably be spent picking up a few shifts, doing some moonlighting, or upselling one of your current customers with some “Spring cleaning” stuff.
In fact, I’ll even go so far as to say this: the next few months might be the perfect time to pick up some smoking deals. Guys who are tapped and need the cash are going to be letting projects go for pennies on the dollar. Muscle cars, bikes, boats, you name it. There’s going to be some “fire sales” IF you learn how to keep a little more money in your own pockets.
Here’s a few easy ways right now:
- Quit sneaking out to eat. Look, that fast food breakfast and lunch is garbage, and you know it. Ditto for the $5 Starbucks. Pack a lunch, eat breakfast at the house, brew a pot of coffee and be like the old guy in the break room with the green Stanley Thermos at break time. I like chips and salsa as much as the next guy, but eating dinner at the Mexican restaurant for you and the family will knock $50 out of your wallet every time. A couple trips through the drive through will do it, too.
- Talk to your insurance company. Most of us have multiple policies in our names, and most of us don’t do anything to manage those. If it’s been more than a couple years, shop around for some new quotes and once you’ve got them, go back to your current agency and ask why this quote is lower than what they’ve got you paying. Most of the time, they’ll fix you up really quickly to keep you as a customer.
- Buying used? I like chrome as much as the next guy, and I’ve used plenty of billet and stainless over the years, too. Plenty of times, I’ve found the right part used for a lot less than new – sometimes still in the box. You have to watch shipping, but it can also be fun to hunt down stuff like this rather than simply waving the magic credit card and having it hit the door in a few days.
- What else is in the garage? If you make your living in a truck, then you need it. At the same time, I know a lot of guys around here that bought WAYYYYYY too much truck for the work they make it do. That $80,000 F250 is a sweet ride, but unless your accountant is doing some real magic with the numbers, chances are, you might be able to do a lot better with a half ton for a fraction of the price. The way used truck values are right now? You might even MAKE money on a trade in since inventory is so low.
Now this isn’t supposed to be a huge list – this is a blog about riding, not income – but over the last two months, I’ve heard so many guys talking about how the economy was putting a crunch on their hobbies. It might be shooting, or riding, or even golf, but the fact is, you don’t have to give anything up, just rethink where your money is going.
Years ago, when I still did a lot of bowhunting, I idolized a guy name Chuck Adams, who was an incredible archer. I can remember reading an interview with him in one of the various hunting magazines at the time, and they ‘d asked him how he could afford to go on so many great hunts all over the country without any real corporate sponsorship (this was before his deal with Hoyt-Easton). His answer was simple – he pointed out that his love for bowhunting was stronger then his love for driving a new truck, and so he had an old Toyota he drove to his “real” job and the money he saved on a car payment helped fuel his hobbies.
At the time it seemed creative, but today? It sounds like a smart way for you to stay on the bike and continue to live to ride.
Keep the shiny side up.