Your car’s value

Extending on What’s My Car Worth from October 2010

Nothing wrong with the post from 2010 or the updates from 2015.  I followed the advice recently, twice.  You can check LinkedIn starting on August 11 2018 for a series of posts related to a claim.  Sadly, these posts continue since claim 2 is still pending.  But, What is a car worth?

2009 Scion Xb is hit, airbags deploy so I know it is totaled.  I spend some time on Kelly Blue Book and then a basic Google search.  I narrow in on $5000.  Total time on this was less than 30 minutes.  BUT, it made a huge difference since State Farm was a bit less.

  1. Do your homework!  No different than if trading it in
  2. DO NOT factor in tax, settle on the cars value FIRST

So, car one is “sold.”  While this is going on I get a crash course in buying a new car.  Similar tactics apply.  Once you know what you want, settle in on a price.  LOTS of tools available to help with this.  But, what if you buy a car on August 30th, with financing, and it is totaled on September 1, 44 hours later?  You’d be me 🙁

This time, it is tricky since the other driver had Progressive, part of the problem, and $10,000 in property damage(the real problem).  No easy settlement here.  Then, my company, Safeco, “low balled” me.  How can you make that worse?  I used my steps and knew what I just paid for it, and had value.  They hired a third party who got twelve comparable models.  Seems good.  Until you realize they ignored the two dealerships in my county and used Connecticut where the fees are different.

I’ve been beating myself a bit and asking ” Where did my process fail?” It really didn’t it just needs more emphasis on the part that this is your claim, no one else’s. You need to own it as such.  Sadly, the companies are not using them as marketing moments like they should. Not loyalty building times like they should.  Instead, inefficiencies rule as does the hangover of wondering what will happen next August when my policy renews.

Back to value; I knew the number and I pushed a little.  Ended up fine but why did I need to counter offer?  Just take care of your people.  Why hire a third party when in less than 10 minutes you can do it?  Want to really hire a third party?  Look at the tech USAA just released.  How about Edmunds and KBB they were more than happy to sell me as a lead to four dealerships.  How about working with Enterprise to put their rental places IN car dealerships.

Bottom line(s)

  • YOU set or at least influence the value of your car
  • PLENTY of tools to help
  • It shouldn’t be this way but it is, embrace it

The Anatomy of a Car’s Value

2003 Volkswagen Jetta GL:  So according to  the Good Trade-in Value is $1700 and Fair is $1125 so maybe I am around $1500.  Now private party says $3225 and Fair is $2525, let’s keep being reasonable and say $2875 as the private party we won’t use retail because this car is not in excellent condition.

How about Edmunds?  A little different process here comes up with $2734 as a trade in $3752 as a private party, same thing here retail seems a bit high.

So KBB average with my adjustments is $2187.50 and Edmunds is $3243  that is about a $1000 difference.

I was hoping to find some for sale, however, was unsuccessful so where does that leave me?  With a $1000 collision deductible I may see somewhere between $1100 and $2200 dollars in the event of a total loss and the coverage costs about $100 for the year.  It still looks like I am ahead and I would not mind having that money to buy another car.  That being said, IN MY OPINION, it is almost time to drop the coverage.

Why should you do this, so in the event of a claim you are not surprised at the first offer that an insurance company makes.

5/12/2015 UPDATE

This car was sold in July off 2013 for $550.  There was a very large market, larger than I thought there would be.  Definitely could have received more for it.  But at that point, my conscience and moral compass stepped in and we all felt very satisfied at this price.  It does go to show, as in this post that there is absolutely a market for cars that you cannot find on the internet.