Unless you live under a bridge and you have friends named “Frodo” and “Bilbo” you know a vehicle with an accident is worth less than a vehicle that is accident free.
Why is that? Because vehicle history sources like CarFax & AutoCheck are in the business of keeping people honest. That’s right, they make sure that when a vehicle gets bought or sold that conditions like accidents, flood damage, lemon-law and mileage discrepancies are flagged and made known. Quite simply, they eliminate the mystery with vehicle history. Believe it or not, there are unscrupulous people in this world that would suggest that an accident was very “minor” when it was indeed severe. CarFax levels the playing field for the buyer and keeps the seller honest with respect to disclosure of the vehicles history and now even maintenance is reflected.
With all that said, sadly you cannot get top dollar for a vehicle that has been in an accident because it has been “refurbished”. If you were looking to buy a new digital flatscreen television and had the choice of a new or refurbished one at the same price, would you consider the refurnished one? No. The refurbished TV is only a consideration for some folks and what will drive that decision is the discount/value correlation. Automobiles are different than electronics however, and previous accidents raise safety concerns with potential buyers. This is extremely detrimental to the resale value because more than half of the audience for the vehicle you are trying to sell is not even looking at your car. They don’t have to and they won’t. This is called “accident stigma” or inherent diminished value and chances are you have not been compensated for it!
So the best way to get top dollar for your accident vehicle is to file a diminished value claim and get compensated for the loss in value. The loss you have suffered is irreparable and very tangible and if you were not at fault, a settlement is quite probable with the right resources and approach. Start by getting a diminished value report and quantify the amount of your potential claim. You have up to 4 years to file this claim but it is always best to address it during the claims settlement process. If you have the stomach for some tough negotiating and want to take the DIY route make sure you can substantiate the figures you are presenting.
For more information or assistance in filing a diminished value claim yourself please visit www.crashcalculator.com or call 888-674-1068 to speak to a live agent.