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Everything You Need to Know When Buying Second-Hand Bike

In India, bikes help you snake through congested or narrow streets effortlessly and be the master of your own schedule. You don't need to wait for public transport when you have a bike to call your own. Especially, when it's a second-hand bike, the affordability factor makes it a hot favourite among countless Indians. And the good news is that you can get used bikes in great condition nowadays, if you do your homework. 

Plus, with leading insurance companies providing bike insurance these days, it has become stress-free to get the model you want. You can choose from third-party bike insurance, own-damage policy or comprehensive policy based on your need and budget. However, first, there are certain things you need to keep in mind.​

Things To Consider While Buying a Second-hand Bike

• Servicing Record-

With the help of servicing record, you can find out about the current and past condition of the bike. It tells you how many times the said bike has gone for servicing and for what reasons. You may simply request an estimation if there is no written record.

Check Vehicle Identification Number (VIN)

It is a unique serial number that serves as the bike's legal identification number. The VIN number is inscribed on the steering neck part of the frame. This number should always be compared to the VIN stamped on the engine. However, if the bike is old, you may need the assistance of a mechanic to locate this number. Always keep in mind that the same number should appear on the registration certificate as well.

Test Ride-

Similar to an elephant whose one set of teeth is for pure show and the other to chew with, your bike may appear amazing from the outside but might be different on the inside. As such, take a test ride to check the pace, mileage, and whether you are satisfied with the vehicle's efficiency or not. 

Check Documents-

Before you buy your second-hand bike, make sure the seller has all the required documents. These documents include bike insurance policy, RC book, pollution certificate, extended warranty if any, original invoice, RTO forms like Form 28, 29, and 30.

 • Thorough Inspection-

Before buying a bike, make sure to check it thoroughly. Inspecting the bike will give you an idea about its condition. Look for dents, bruises, worn brakes, and dim headlights.​

 • Check the available options-

Never rely on a single dealer for your bike purchase. Always look around to see what various dealers have to offer. As such, you may get a better deal from a different dealer for the same bike or a different bike.

 • Negotiate-

You may get a chance to reduce the asking price for each flaw you discover in the bike. So, don't be afraid to bargain. Do not sign the paperwork until you are sure that you have gotten a decent deal. 

Once you get the deal, the next step is to transfer the bike ownership.

 How To Transfer Bike Ownership?

Before moving on to the procedure, let us first know about the documents required for the bike ownership transfer.

• Registration Certificate Book

• Pollution under control certificate

• Sales Invoice

• Transfer Deed

•Bike Insurance certificate

• Road tax certificate

• Three copies of Form 28 if a vehicle is transferred from one state to another. Form 28 serves as a No Objection Certificate.

• Two copies of Form 29 that are duly filled along with the signature of the seller.

• Two Copies of Form 30 signed by both parties.

• If the bike was purchased on a loan by the seller, then a NOC by the lender must be produced.

 •Address proof of the seller along with three passport size photographs. 

In order to execute the ownership transfer of a bike, a buyer must also present the following documents.

 • A valid proof of identity

 • A valid proof of address

 • Two photographs -passport-sized

As per Rule 81 of the Central Motor vehicles Rule, 1989, these documents, along with a registration fee, must be submitted to the registration authority.


 •To begin, the applicant must submit an ownership transfer application to the RTO where the bike was registered. This process is handled by the bike's seller in the case of a sale. However, in the event of the owner's death, it is done by the person to whom it is transmitted.

• Secondly, it is mandatory that all necessary documents such as the RC, tax paid receipts emission test, insurance, three passport-sized pictures, and the seller's address proof along with Form 29 and Form 30 are submitted to the Directorate of Transportation office.

•Finally, the concerned RTO must be notified of the bike's sale or transfer within a certain time frame. Within two weeks, in-state ownership transfers must be reported, whereas out-of-state ownership transactions must be reported within 45 days.

 Once bike ownership is transferred, the next step is to transfer the bike insurance.

 How To Transfer Bike Insurance?

• Within 15 days from the ownership transfer, the owner should apply for the transfer of insurance.

• Carry the required documents, such as the registration certificate, details of the original insurance policy. You should also mention the vehicle information, date of ownership transfer, name of the dealer, and the premium amount paid.

•Along with the owner's personal information, the buyer should present his or her personal identification, such as a PAN card or Aadhar, a driver's license, or other forms of identification, for the insurance transfer's record. The name on the policy will be changed to the new owner's name once the insurer has verified all the documents.

• Third-party insurance plays a crucial role in calculating the bike insurance premium ​. As such, it becomes necessary for the bike owner to submit the third-party insurance at the time of transfer.

 Types of Insurance Available for Used Bike

 Third-Party Bike Insurance

As the name suggests, this insurance protects the third party against harm caused by the insured vehicle. It covers vehicle and property damage, physical injuries, and death. 

What is not covered?

• Accident caused by drunken driving, an accident did intentionally.

• Third-party bike insurance does not provide coverage if your bike is stolen or it is used for illegal or commercial purposes.

• It does not cover add-ons like breakdown assistance, parts depreciation, etc.

 Own Damage Policy-

Own Damage Policy is the stand-alone bike insurance scheme that solely protects your own motorcycle in the event of damage or failure. A similar situation may occur as a result of an accident, collision, natural disaster, or even a fire. This policy was introduced by IRDAI, few years back.

 Comprehensive Policy-

In addition to third-party policy, comprehensive bike insurance protects the rider from his vehicle damage. It protects your bike from incidents of theft, accidents, fires, manmade disaster, natural disasters, and other hazards. It also provides coverage in case of personal injury while riding your bike .


Nowadays, functional and efficient second-hand bikes are readily available in the market. Aside from that, the transfer of ownership and insurance is a painless procedure. As a result, purchasing a used bike is a good idea if the above-mentioned factors are carefully considered.