'00 Stratus in Richmond Flood

Discussion in 'General Motoring' started by D. E. Smith, Sep 5, 2004.

  1. D. E. Smith

    D. E. Smith Guest

    Hi, group!

    My daughter's '00 Stratus, which was in great shape and pretty much
    loaded was caught in the Richmond, VA flood last week and was submerged for
    about 3 - 4 hours. She has full comprehensive coverage on the vehicle, and
    the insurance company said it was covered, but probably a total loss. We are
    just wondering how the insurance company will base the value of the vehicle
    to make the settlement?

    Thanks in advance for your help.

    D. E. Smith, Sep 5, 2004
  2. D. E. Smith

    Art Guest

    Art, Sep 6, 2004
  3. D. E. Smith

    ThaDriver Guest

    just wondering how the insurance company will base the value of the
    vehicle to make the settlement?
    They use the ccc value or whatever they can to try to screw you. Document
    *everything* you can in a 100 mile radius including local newspaper &
    trader sales, dealer prices, nada, kelly blue book, etc.; all with
    comparable options & accessories.
    I would point you to my website ScrewedByinsurance.com but I'm broke &
    can't afford hosting at this time. There is some good documentation there
    - wish I could help you further.
    ~ Paul
    aka "Tha Driver"

    Giggle Cream - it makes dessert *funny*!
    ThaDriver, Sep 6, 2004
  4. You should talk to your agent about this. You will probably have to argue
    with them. Keep in mind also that with the recent storms that a very great
    cars have been flood damaged and over the next few weeks will be totaled.
    This is going to create a huge drain on the supply of used vehicles in your

    It is to your advantage to draw out this process with the insurance company
    and keep
    close watch on the prices of used vehicles that are comparable. Your going
    to see
    their prices spike, probably in the next 2-3 weeks. Of course, this will
    help raise the
    trade-in values too, so more people will buy new vehicles and eventually the
    vehicle prices will drop again.

    Also be extremely careful on purchasing a used vehicle for her. It is very
    for flood damaged vehicles to be totaled, then the totaled vehicles bought
    unscrupulous people who clean them up and dry them out as best they can,
    sell them for a quick buck. A couple months later when the interior of the
    car starts stinking due to mold, and the electronics all go wacko due to
    the buyer is SOL. Your going to see a lot of those flood damaged vehicles
    up on the used market over the next year.

    Ted Mittelstaedt, Sep 7, 2004
  5. D. E. Smith

    Bill Putney Guest

    Paul is correct. I recently went thru this on an accident total out.
    The ins. co. wanted to use the NADA book value which is an absolute
    low-ball scam value created to serve certain vested interest groups like
    insurance companies.

    After getting advice here on how to fight it, I did what Paul suggested.
    The two best pieces of ammunition I had that caused them to pay the
    fair value that I was asking were a printout from www.autotrader.com and
    appraisal values from three local car dealers - all supporting the value
    that I was asking.

    I documented it all and printed it out. I wrote it up just as if it was
    a piece of evidence to be used in a small claims court case as a subtle
    hint to them. Any reasonable person reading thru it could see that what
    I was claiming was (1) reasonable, and (2) credible (it's worth what the
    local market says it is worth). As soon as I faxed that to them, they
    immediately agreed to my numbers - I even had them inflate the value so
    that when I bought it back at salvage value, I still ended up with what
    I was askigng as the market value (I was able to do this because the
    value I was asking was actually a little below the true market value - I
    told them that if they didn't agree to make the bottom line numbers come
    out to what I was asking for, that I would go to court for the *full*
    true market value - they took my first offer).

    That autotrader.com printout was critical - it shows you what people are
    actually asking for the exact car with same options in your local area.
    Take that value and deduct a little for what everyone knows is
    negotiating room, and tell them that is what you should get for the car.
    Tell them that any reasonable judge would award that to you if it goes
    to court (that lets them know you're willing to go to court. Again -
    the other critical info. was writtin appraisal values from the car
    dealers. I found that if I told them what I needed the appraisal value
    for, they were very cooperative in providing a good number - most went
    by the Kelley value even though the ins. co. insisted that no one goes
    by them. But having the dealer put that value on paper made a huge

    With the time I spent on the phone and getting letters from sales
    managers at the dealers (had to take a half day off of work to do that,
    which of course they don't reimburse you for), I figure I broke even on
    the whole deal. The original offer was $1900. I got a check for $3000
    (after all slavage and other fees).. The Kelley was $3400-3600.

    Bill Putney (to reply by e-mail, replace the last letter of the alphabet
    in my adddress with the letter 'x')
    Bill Putney, Sep 8, 2004
  6. D. E. Smith

    Steve Driska Guest

    There is lots of good advice posted in this thread for those situations
    where the insurance company is trying to give you a very low settlement.
    I once lost a minivan in a flood and I thought my insurance company (USAA)
    was very fair with it. It probably depends on which insurance company you

    Of course, if the car is worth more to you than its book value, then no
    insurance company can make you happy.

    Steve Driska, Sep 10, 2004
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