You have healed after your car accident, and you have the money to get those car damages fixed yourself. So, the question you have now is: “Can I repair my own car after an accident?” Let’s explore the advantages of this, as well as how your car insurance may be affected.
Your Car Insurance Claim – Can I Repair My Own Car After An Accident
After a car accident, there is generally a car claim filed with the car owner’s insurance company. Then, there is the matter of a claims adjuster as well as the auto body repair shops. If your accident just resulted in a tiny fender bender and no major damage, then you may opt to just get the car repaired yourself- especially if your car deductible is a lot more than a mechanic charges you to push out some dents. Most car accidents result in a car insurance claim. After the claim, your car insurance company will produce an estimate. Then, the auto body shop that you and your insurance company agree on, will get the money for the repairs. But sometimes, you may come out “on top” by taking care of the repairs yourself. Here’s what you need to consider:
Do You Owe Money on the Vehicle or is There a Lien on the Vehicle? –
The people who are allowed to work on your vehicle, may be determined by who holds the title to the vehicle. And if it isn’t you, then you don’t have the final say. If you are making payments on the car and there is a lien on the vehicle, then chances are, you may not be allowed to get the car fixed on your own. The lender is the lien holder and it is their money that’s on the line. Our lien holder may not want to leave the repairs up to someone who may or may not use a reputable shop. You may have the best of intentions, but your lien holder has no idea if you are capable of handling the repair.
You Don’t Have the Final Say
Although your insurer may not demand that you use a specific auto body shop, your lien holder might. So, you may have to pull out your loan agreement and read about the specific conditions that apply to car accidents and repairs for your car. Your lien holder may require you to go to a specific dealership or shop to get your car fixed. Again, you don’t own the car, so you don’t have the final say.
Do you Own the Car “Free and Clear”?
If you own the car “free and clear” and you are making no payments on the car, then you have a bit more flexibility in stating where your car can get fixed. You have no one to answer to. But you do want to work with your car insurance company. We’ll discuss that in the next section- so keep reading! In many instances “free and clear” car owners can do whatever they want to do once you get the insurance payout -including having your car fixed at the shop of your choice, getting your sister or brother to fix it, fixing it yourself, or even not fixing it at all! Although you have a bit more room to do more as the outright owner of your car, you want to read your car insurance policy. There may be some stipulations you have to follow.
Learn How Your Insurance May Be Affected! – Can I Repair My Own Car After An Accident
Even if you own your car “free and clear” and you don’t have to use an insurance-approved body shop, your insurance company may give you a side eye if you want to fix your car on your own. This can result in your car insurance company unwilling to continue your coverage of collision or comprehensive coverage. Additionally, if there is other damage to the vehicle that is later discovered, then your car insurance company may not cover the repair of that additional damage.
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Let’s say you fix your car yourself and you get into another car accident. Your insurance company may not agree to pay for the damage, due to the fact that you previously fixed the car on your own. In these kinds of situations, it may not be worth the money you’d be saving, doing the fixes on your own. You may even find that you come out paying more money in the long run.
Even if You Repair your Car Yourself…
Even if you want to fix your car on your own, you may still find it helpful to have your car insurance adjuster look at and evaluate your car’s damage. Your adjuster can still provide you with an estimate before any work is done on the car. In fact, you may find that your car insurance provider will likely insist that a claims adjuster look at your car, even if you want to fix it yourself. Having an adjuster look at your car is vital. Why? Well, you and your car insurance company will have a solid, sturdy and reliable idea as to what the settlement of the car damages will be- helping to avoid any kind of miscommunication or misunderstandings in the future.
If you botch the repair of your car, the costs of any remedial or additional repairs will come out of your pocket, and not the repair shop or the car insurance company. So, if you are questioning your ability to adequately and properly fix your car, you can have the repairs done by a certified and approved body shop tech, the first time.
Oftentimes, saving a few dollars in the short term is just not worth the hassle and possible costs in the long term.
Weigh Your Options and Do What is Best for You – Can I Repair My Own Car After An Accident
Just because you may be able to fix your car on your own, doesn’t mean you should. On the other hand, if you love fixing cars and you’re even a certified mechanic yourself, you may go for fixing it on your own. You have to do what’s best for your peace of mind. And if you decide to sell your “free and clear” car, then consider the best in the business, Cash Cars Buyer!