Crash aftermath strategy? (1 Viewer)

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Wrecked my LX yesterday. Pretty bummed right now, but glad everyone is OK.
40mph collision and a dual front airbag deployment has me thinking this is almost assuredly a totaled vehicle now. It's a shame, it was a real keeper.

I filed a claim this morning and am expecting to hear back from an adjuster on Monday. It's 13 years old and has 181k on the clock, so I'm fully expecting some low-ball compensation offer from my auto insurance. I'm looking for advice on how to leverage the maximum amount of money out of my insurer.

Any first had experience from fellow mudders who have been down this road would be greatly appreciated. Here are a few ideas I'm wondering about.

  • I just put $900 worth of new tires on it two months ago. Can I use that angle to try to earn some extra compensation?
  • This truck has an amazing dealer service history. There are entries every 5-6k at the dealer almost since new. We all know that would increase resale value on the open market in the real world, but can I use it to leverage a few extra bucks from the adjuster?
  • It was in premium condition- a 99th percentile example. Again, can I work this for more money?
Any other things I'm not thinking of?
In the meantime, the search begins again. ::SIGH:: It was really hard finding that one, and I'm not looking forward to sifting through all the beaters for another great 100.
 

Sandroad

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Run a search on MUD using the term Insurance Adjustment. You'll get several pages of hits with good info from others who have been in your situation. Glad everyone is ok. Bummer about the LX. Where are you located?
 
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Accept that it will absolutely be totaled. Without a doubt.

What did you hit and what does it look like?

Receipts and pictures can help when pursuading insurance the increased caliber of a wel cared for vehicle.
 
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Run a search on MUD using the term Insurance Adjustment. You'll get several pages of hits with good info from others who have been in your situation. Glad everyone is ok. Bummer about the LX. Where are you located?

I'm in oakland county. This was near Great Lakes Crossing mall in Auburn Hills, if you are familiar with that area.

Accept that it will absolutely be totaled. Without a doubt.

What did you hit and what does it look like?

Receipts and pictures can help when pursuading insurance the increased caliber of a wel cared for vehicle.

I hit a mid-2000's GMC Sierra-or-something. It was stopped dead at a light. Accordioned the rear end and bed. There were a couple of pallets and a spare tire/wheel in the bed of that truck when I hit them that went flying up over the top of my cruiser and landed behind us. Lucky that stuff didn't come through the windshield. Other driver was fine, just a little shook up.

I'm pretty amazed at how much damage the LX took compared to how little we felt. It didn't feel all that violent. I already had great confidence in the safety of the 100 series, but now I'm even more impressed.

Even the airbags are gentle and refined. :D
 
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Its a total loss. The formula for total loss varies state to state, some use 75% others higher or a bit lower, of the repair estimate to market value. I recently had a total loss initial valuation of $21,370 increased to $26,900 (that i accepted) on a vehicle that i paid $24,500 for and owned for less than 2 months. My advise is to do your own research and base your discussions with your adjuster on data and facts and not emotion. Your insurance company will probably task a third party like CCC One to do a market valuation report, they'll generate a report based on VIN and miles and what they believe to be comparable vehicles for sale or recently sold in your region. The initial market report i received was full of errors that detracted from my valuation so go through it carefully and make your adjuster aware of these discrepancies. It is crucial that the vehicles they use for comparison are true "like" vehicles. In my case I purchased a no lease, one owner, not from a salt state, full service documentation vehicle in mint [industry "excellent"] condition. I had 60 photos from the dealers site to give my adjuster to show it was indeed in industry "excellent" condition. But the comparables CCC One used were at best industry "average" condition vehicles. Example: one comp was a five owner, three lease, wrecked with damage reported, dealer photos showed blemishes, carpet marks, rim rash etc. Not even close to mine. I made my adjuster aware that their comps were average and below average condition vehicles, citing the multi owner, multi lease wrecked truck and asked for a new report based on comparable vehicles in industry "excellent". He agreed they weren't comparable and called back a couple of hours later and asked if I would accept $26,900 plus taxes etc.
 
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EDIT: I noticed that while I was typing this PADDO posted a reply. Yeah, what he said ^^^

I went through a similar situation not long ago. I totaled a VERY low mileage '05 Tundra that was in perfect condition. I fully expected to get hosed by the insurance. I was shocked when the valuation came back thousands higher than I thought. The adjuster explained that they look at the mileage, options, and condition and search for comparable vehicles that are for sale and/or have recently sold in the area. They couldn't find any limited tundras around that year model with so few miles so they actually used newer year models for the valuation. I bought the the truck back from the insurance company for a few thousand dollars and fixed it.

I don't think the new tires or documented service history will do much for you. The perfect condition hopefully will. I would insist that they look for and compare with sales of LX's of your mileage and in your condition. When they come back with a number ask to see what they used to determine the value. I think that's your strongest negotiation leverage. A true comparable isn't going to be cheap so hopefully you will be OK.

Glad your OK and good luck with the insurance and finding a replacement. Let us know how it goes.
 

jLB

May be in need of a 12 step LC/LX program.
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I'm pretty amazed at how much damage the LX took compared to how little we felt. It didn't feel all that violent. I already had great confidence in the safety of the 100 series, but now I'm even more impressed.

Even the airbags are gentle and refined. :D

It looks like it did exactly what it was supposed to do. Absorb energy by deforming the front end in order to protect the passengers in the passenger compartment.

Sorry about your vehicle, but it sounds like it did what it was supposed to do, and everyone is alright. It may be a pain, but vehicles are replaceable (and insurance companies suck).
 
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I had a similar situation with my Tundra. I did bring up the M/T rims and new tires after base negotiations were done. I also showed up with several of my own comparable trucks off ebay and other online stites along with KBB and Edmonds values.

I got them to add another 1000 on top for the new tires and rims or had the option to take them off the truck.
 

Sandroad

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I'm in oakland county. This was near Great Lakes Crossing mall in Auburn Hills, if you are familiar with that area.



I hit a mid-2000's GMC Sierra-or-something. It was stopped dead at a light. Accordioned the rear end and bed. There were a couple of pallets and a spare tire/wheel in the bed of that truck when I hit them that went flying up over the top of my cruiser and landed behind us. Lucky that stuff didn't come through the windshield. Other driver was fine, just a little shook up.

I'm pretty amazed at how much damage the LX took compared to how little we felt. It didn't feel all that violent. I already had great confidence in the safety of the 100 series, but now I'm even more impressed.

Even the airbags are gentle and refined. :D

Yes, I'm very familiar with that area. I've got a brother in law in Rochester Hills on N. Adams Road. Your LX did just what it was supposed to do and kept the passenger compartment protected. Whew!
 
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It is crucial that the vehicles they use for comparison are true "like" vehicles. In my case I purchased a no lease, one owner, not from a salt state, full service documentation vehicle in mint [industry "excellent"] condition. I had 60 photos from the dealers site to give my adjuster to show it was indeed in industry "excellent" condition.

sounds exactly like mine. great advice, everyone. thanks.

I'll make sure to let the adjuster note that i traveled to atlanta to buy this one specifically to get a clean, non-rust belt rig. i'll get my own comps together in preparation for this battle.
 
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My adjuster took off 900 bucks for the interior not being clean when I totaled our 4R a couple years ago. I fought that extensively but it stuck. It was the biggest single factor in the valuation and 30 minutes of interior cleanup (two young kids, unavoidable mess) would have reversed all of it. I told the guy that had I known we were going to be in an accident, I would have cleaned up the car before that. So, if you get a chance clean the interior.
 
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Sorry to see this happen, but be glad you were in a 100. Glad to hear that everyone is safe, and this confirms for me why I still have my 01.
 

jLB

May be in need of a 12 step LC/LX program.
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My adjuster took off 900 bucks for the interior not being clean when I totaled our 4R a couple years ago. I fought that extensively but it stuck. It was the biggest single factor in the valuation and 30 minutes of interior cleanup (two young kids, unavoidable mess) would have reversed all of it. I told the guy that had I known we were going to be in an accident, I would have cleaned up the car before that. So, if you get a chance clean the interior.

I think I'd like to detail this guys car, if he thinks an interior detail = $900
$900 for 30min... $1800 per hour... That might make a nice retirement hobby...
 
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From another Michigander..........glad you guys are OK. The LX took quite a hit. It might be worth buying back (if it's cheap enough) and parting it out to get yourself some $$ to put into your next rig.
 
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Follow-up/resolution to this thread and some thoughts for those who might be in this situation after me.

I prepared an info package for the insurance adjustor, which I emailed over shortly after the crash. Included were the following:
  • The entire dealer service history, saved as PDF from lexus.com (over 50 entries since the LX was new)
  • Photos of the receipt for new tires I had installed back in october at a cost of rought $850 (approximately 3000 miles on the tires at time of crash)
  • Photos of receipts of all other work that was done since I took ownership (oil changes, front axle work, etc)
  • PDFs of five current listings of similar vehicles that are on the market at this moment, in roughly the same area that I purchased this LX
    • This was key, I think. I wasn't able to find many matches that were very close in terms of year and mileage, so I included 2004's with lower mileage, 2004's with slightly higher mileage, and newer model years with lower and similar mileage. I confess that I did sort of cherry pick the examples that were listed at higher prices, but I feel just fine about that.
    • I searched cars.com and autotrader.com and used their printer-friendly listings. I feel this probably lended some extra legitimacy to the comps that I chose and sent it.
  • A write-up of why my particular LX should be valued higher than the "average" LX. A brief synopsis:
    • A one-owner vehicle with all service records from dealer. That makes this example a highly desirable one.
    • The rarity of these vehicles for this and similar model years. There just aren't many for sale at any given time.
    • The vehicle was purchased from a southern state. That also makes this LX a more desirable example. I included approximate travel costs to fly to the location and drive it back and indicated that, were I to replace this LX with an equal one, I would again travel south and drive it back.
    • The cosmetic condition was well above average for the year and mileage. Zero rust, excellent paint, reupholstered front seats, extremely clean interior.
So I put all of the above into a single zip file and sent it over. I heard back yesterday on the findings of the adjustor. Yes, it's a total loss (duh). Valuation?
NADA Clean Retail value for this LX is $16625.
My insurance company valued my particular LX at $18840. She specifically mentioned that they added $750 for the tires.
I paid $16250 for the LX back in August. So I'm getting reimbursed about $2400 more than I paid for the truck. I'm pretty happy with that. The extra cash should help me get into an '06 or '07 if I find the right one.

I definitely feely that putting together all of that info got me a lot more money out of the insurance company. It was well worth the hour or so that it took me to get it all together and sent over.

Thanks again to fellow mudders for the advice. It helped a lot and I'm happy with how this all worked out. Would have preferred not to have totaled my lx though. It feels like when a top thoroughbred horse breaks it's leg during a race and has to be put down. Such a shame to lose such a rare beauty before it's time.
 
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tabraha

Hello My Name is: TAD
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Wow, that's a good resolution. Name drop your insurance company too for stepping up to the plate. We always get the names of the Ins Companies that don't impress!
 
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thats a good settlement, especially since the wreck was your fault. The person you hit will file against your insurance as well, probably a total loss too.

How much will your premiums be going up? Might not be that good of a deal when the dust settles.
 

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