The Importance of an Accurate Property Damage Quote After Your Auto Accident
The most frustrating part of our client’s auto accident experience, aside from nagging injuries, is often getting their vehicle repaired. There are all sorts of different scenarios and options that can play out to have your vehicle repaired; does my insurance company pay for repairs and then I pay my deductible?; does the at fault party pay for my repairs?; do I accept a check from the at fault insurance and get the vehicle repaired on my own?
There is no right or wrong answer to how you should handle getting your property damage claim paid for. It is however very important that your property damage estimate be accurate and done with a reputable body shop.
Often times the at fault insurance will come to your home after an auto accident and have an adjuster do a “walk around” estimate of your property damage in your driveway. These days the adjuster even has the ability to write you a check right there in your driveway. As tempting as it may seem to deposit that check, these checks often undervalue the damage to your car by as much at 35-50%.
Without the proper estimate performed at a body shop the at fault insurance company will use you the original, low estimate against you when it comes time to settle your case. The undervalued check that was deposited now becomes the value of your property damage claim; regardless of whether the value is an accurate representation of the repairs your vehicle actually needed. Insurance companies like to make a strong correlation between property damage values and severity of injuries.