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Auto Insurance/total loss/buyback/salvage title/need advice

2,844 286 April 4, 2017 at 05:50 PM in Finance (4)
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Last Edited by SlidingBike April 5, 2017 at 07:52 PM
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My 2000 Honda Accord EX:
While backing, I ran into another car, scratched their bumper, my car driver side door dented. I am at fault, claim filed.
My car had a wide dent on the passenger rear door.
Mileage is 163K, minor transmission issue only when I am backing to the uphill, I need to press gas real hard.
My car is declared a total loss due to the fix costs more than the actual market value of the car.

My insurance is offering market value close to $4K
Got a 500 dollars deductible resulting $3.5K cash to me when I give the car.
I am offered the buy back of the car with salvage title for $525.
I own this car over a decade, recently put the new pair of breaks, new tires, new battery etc...

I am trying to decide whether to keep the car or let it go?
If I let it go, I need to quickly buy another car. I had an eye on the forthcoming 2018 Camry which is scheduled for sept 2017 release.
Also I thought so far that I can run this car for 40K more before it dies.
Had another minivan for family needs but this has been my primary car always.
Questions:
Please share your best advice to keep or let it go for $525?
What are future problems with salvage title etc?
Do I need to spend a lot on salvage title(like each year smog check, high insurance premiums)?
planning to have only liability coverage if I keep it as collision and comprehensive doesnt make any sense for a salvaged box .
TIA

EDIT: Thank you for those kind SDers who spent their time in helping me to make good decision with their knowledge.. Many thanks.

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#2
Unless you think you can sell or fix and sell for enough of an amount over the $525 it would cost to buy back to make it worth your time and trouble, I would not bother.

If it were me, I would go and look for a decent 1-3 year old used car and not go looking to buy new. You were driving a 16 year old car with 163k miles, so why would you want to spend a lot for a new car and pay the added expenses on insurance and everything else? Finding a decent used car in the 1-3 year range will save you a lot and not really affect the long term use imo. New cars depreciate 15+ percent the minute you drive them off the showroom floor and stick a used tag on them. Depends on what you want to spend and your driving habits obviously, but buying new rarely makes sense if you are looking to save money. My 2 cents.
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#3
Can you drive the car with the damage now (or with a new headlight, etc)? If so, I would buy it back and run it into the ground. Just make sure to check with your insurance company to see if there are any issues with driving a salvage title car (might cost more).
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#4
Quote from YanksIn2009
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Unless you think you can sell or fix and sell for enough of an amount over the $525 it would cost to buy back to make it worth your time and trouble, I would not bother.

If it were me, I would go and look for a decent 1-3 year old used car and not go looking to buy new. You were driving a 16 year old car with 163k miles, so why would you want to spend a lot for a new car and pay the added expenses on insurance and everything else? Finding a decent used car in the 1-3 year range will save you a lot and not really affect the long term use imo. New cars depreciate 15+ percent the minute you drive them off the showroom floor and stick a used tag on them. Depends on what you want to spend and your driving habits obviously, but buying new rarely makes sense if you are looking to save money. My 2 cents.
Thanks for your opinion. I am not planning to buy a new car now(but if I can wait till September, I may consider new Camry).
Car is perfectly drivable, its just a dent on the front driver side door with some paint overlap, which I am able to wipe off with GoofOff. Its all in the same condition. No operational issues, I am using it currently.(remember its just a bumper scratch for the other party).
Quote from tennis8363
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Can you drive the car with the damage now (or with a new headlight, etc)? If so, I would buy it back and run it into the ground. Just make sure to check with your insurance company to see if there are any issues with driving a salvage title car (might cost more).
Thank you for taking a stab on my request. As I said above, the car is perfectly drivable as it was before. Even I thought I dont need to make an insurance claim but since I am at fault, the claim was filed. I guess I can easily drive 40K more on it to reach my goal of 200K on it. Salvage title may cause for its lower market value. I am thinking of donating if I can be able to drive it 20K more.. Salvage title needs every year smog check instead of alternative years.
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Quote from SlidingBike
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Thank you for taking a stab on my request. As I said above, the car is perfectly drivable as it was before. Even I thought I dont need to make an insurance claim but since I am at fault, the claim was filed. I guess I can easily drive 40K more on it to reach my goal of 200K on it. Salvage title may cause for its lower market value. I am thinking of donating if I can be able to drive it 20K more.. Salvage title needs every year smog check instead of alternative years.
As long as you don't have a check engine light, it will pass. Modern cars are pretty easy for smog testing. Since it is perfectly driveable, this is a clear cut decision in my mind.

Don't donate the car, just sell it as-is, you can usually fetch at least $500 for ANYTHING that still has most of its parts and drivetrain.

I see where you are coming from. My wife's old car was backed into at our condo (not our fault, were parked at the time) and it ripped the bumper cover off and put a dent in the rear quarter panel.

The quote to fix it was $1.5K. I took the check, threw it savings, grabbed a hammer, beat out the dent and used drywall screws to attach the bumper cover again Smilie
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Quote from tennis8363
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As long as you don't have a check engine light, it will pass. Modern cars are pretty easy for smog testing. Since it is perfectly driveable, this is a clear cut decision in my mind.

Don't donate the car, just sell it as-is, you can usually fetch at least $500 for ANYTHING that still has most of its parts and drivetrain.

I see where you are coming from. My wife's old car was backed into at our condo (not our fault, were parked at the time) and it ripped the bumper cover off and put a dent in the rear quarter panel.

The quote to fix it was $1.5K. I took the check, threw it savings, grabbed a hammer, beat out the dent and used drywall screws to attach the bumper cover again
Awesome... you are going to be my model(while I dont need to hammer or screws.. here is the initial damage image attached but I was able to wipe off all white color with goofoff...
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Quote from tennis8363
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Can you drive the car with the damage now (or with a new headlight, etc)? If so, I would buy it back and run it into the ground. Just make sure to check with your insurance company to see if there are any issues with driving a salvage title car (might cost more).
+1. My wife's car was totaled and we were given the option of a check for $9K or keep it w/ a clean title and get a check for $7.5K. No frame or cosmetic damage, so we took the latter and will drive the car until the wheels fall off.
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what are the ramifications of owning a salvage title car? The best I can google is to beware of BUYING one, but if it's yours already, you know the extent of the damage, service history, etc. In OP's case it seems pretty open and shut to buy it back with the salvage title, given that all the damage is cosmetic in nature, if OP doesn't mind doing some handiwork or just driving the car as-is. I don't see why getting insurance would be a big deal - at some point you'd remove collision anyway (way before salvage).
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Get the salvage title. Unless you fix the damage, who the fark cares. The damage alone kills the resale, not to mention the 200k you plan on having when you sell it.

Donation may take it, they won't sell though. Liability too high with a salvage title.

You most likely will need to take it to a state patrol location for them to inspect the car to make sure it's road worthy.
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bulb save money by checking your insurance every 2 years (and not every 20) Thanks Liberty Mutual for reminding me to shop. The $842 increase this year sums it up. Across the board increase for Ohio....whatever
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i think it depends on the state for cost and the inspections. some require you to get it inspected and they retitled it as rebuilt salvage (NY) once it checks out for safety and emissions. call your dmv and ask. it's going to vary by state.

insurance is more and there are limits what they will insure. i looked into this option when my camry got totaled. they were paying a premium that year because used cars were in smaller supply. so i lucked out and just took the money and got a civic.

the other question to ask, is the 3.5k* you'd get worth another 3-4 years in your civic. i feel like at that age, anything can go wrong with it cost a large repair cost.

edit: it wouldn't be 3.5k. it would be 525 for the buyback plus any fees for inspection/title. probably worth it actually. I'd just scrap the car when it got it's first big repair bill. dealer might give you more than 500 during a promo for it too.
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Last edited by dayv April 5, 2017 at 09:02 AM.
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Quote from dayv
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i think it depends on the state for cost and the inspections. some require you to get it inspected and they retitled it as rebuilt salvage (NY) once it checks out for safety and emissions. call your dmv and ask. it's going to vary by state.

insurance is more and there are limits what they will insure. i looked into this option when my camry got totaled. they were paying a premium that year because used cars were in smaller supply. so i lucked out and just took the money and got a civic.

the other question to ask, is the 3.5k you'd get worth another 3-4 years in your civic. i feel like at that age, anything can go wrong with it cost a large repair cost.
He has an Accord (almost the same Smilie )
I think it's worth taking the car for 525 as long as the state inspection will pass.
cheapest payment he will get without a chunk down is 400+
I could see spending 800 to fix something, but if the trans went out..forget it
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Quote from Dr. J
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what are the ramifications of owning a salvage title car? The best I can google is to beware of BUYING one, but if it's yours already, you know the extent of the damage, service history, etc. In OP's case it seems pretty open and shut to buy it back with the salvage title, given that all the damage is cosmetic in nature, if OP doesn't mind doing some handiwork or just driving the car as-is. I don't see why getting insurance would be a big deal - at some point you'd remove collision anyway (way before salvage).
Yes, I can do some DIY dent removal using those harbor freight $3 suction cup OR even getting the door from junk yard(but its less possibility as I need to spend time on it). Car damage is cosmetic and I have been owning it from its start.
Thanks for your opinion
Quote from dayv
:
i think it depends on the state for cost and the inspections. some require you to get it inspected and they retitled it as rebuilt salvage (NY) once it checks out for safety and emissions. call your dmv and ask. it's going to vary by state.

insurance is more and there are limits what they will insure. i looked into this option when my camry got totaled. they were paying a premium that year because used cars were in smaller supply. so i lucked out and just took the money and got a civic.

the other question to ask, is the 3.5k* you'd get worth another 3-4 years in your civic. i feel like at that age, anything can go wrong with it cost a large repair cost.

edit: it wouldn't be 3.5k. it would be 525 for the buyback plus any fees for inspection/title. probably worth it actually. I'd just scrap the car when it got it's first big repair bill. dealer might give you more than 500 during a promo for it too.
I spoke to the Insurance PD adjuster, insurance is reimbursing the salvage title DMV fee. Also spoke to my current insurance, they said that they would cover my salvaged car like it was before. But as its diminished market value is real low, I will take liability insurance only, ditch collision and comprehensive on it, which reduces the insurance cost on it.
You got a great point here.. when I am considering buying a new car(2018 Camry???) I may consider trade-in of this car for $500 or more. Point noted :-) SD rocks.
Quote from stufine
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He has an Accord (almost the same )
I think it's worth taking the car for 525 as long as the state inspection will pass.
cheapest payment he will get without a chunk down is 400+
I could see spending 800 to fix something, but if the trans went out..forget it
Yes I got three accords one ody.. all Honda club.. I am not going to spend more than $3.5 to fix it.. its cosmetic.. as long as I got a spot to park it, I will keep it :-) I got two new drivers without car, who can dent it further at their own will and wish :-)
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Quote from SlidingBike
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Yes, I can do some DIY dent removal using those harbor freight $3 suction cup OR even getting the door from junk yard(but its less possibility as I need to spend time on it). Car damage is cosmetic and I have been owning it from its start.
Thanks for your opinion
that's not a suction repair dent.
Call the inspection place and ask about the inspection. Mention what the damage is and see what they say
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Keep it. Buy a door from copart or LKQ.

There's nothing inherently wrong with having a salvage title. It depends on if it was repaired properly and safely.

I've seen a 2017 silverado totaled because it was rear ended. It literally needed a tailagte and a box and some of the wiring harness redone ( no splices, all back to the box ). $38K truck. sold for scrap for $16k, got a box off copart for $1500, same color. literally drove over and dropped it on and bolted it up..

Can't even tell the truck was ever in an accident.

sometimes adjusters just total soemthing because someone really wants to total a truck. If you can do the labor yourself and find parts cheap it's not nearly as expensive as shop rates where the labor is sometimes 3-4 times the part costs.
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this is the easiest no brainer keep the car ever.

a 17 year old car you were going to keep driving has a dent- who cares.
you can fix it for way less than the 3000 dollar difference between the 3500 payout and 500 dollar price to rebuy it. you know the car and that's it's pretty mechanically sound.

if anyone wants to put a dent in my 10 year old car and give me 3000 dollars to do so let me know.
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