How do you use a vehicle total loss calculator?


Quick Answer

To use a vehicle total loss calculator, enter information such as the make and model and refer to at least three value sources, advises Brown Automotive Group. Be prepared and reasonable when working with a claims specialist to establish if the vehicle is a total loss or not.

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Full Answer

Use a vehicle total loss calculator to decide whether to accept an insurance company's decision that a vehicle is a total loss or dispute it. Enter the vehicle identification number and mileage, ensuring the correct pre-accident mileage is noted.

Then, include all options that the vehicle is equipped with. Find the value of the vehicle on at least three sources. Brown Automotive Group suggests Auto Trader, KBB, NADA Guides and Edmunds. Use these to work out the average value of the vehicle. Calculate the tax rate. In Michigan, for example, this is six percent. Next, note any documentation fees. This shows the total value of the vehicle. This can be used to negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance company.

Bear in mind that towing, storage and rental expenses do not affect the value of a vehicle. When settling the total loss claim, first negotiate the value of the vehicle before settling on taxes or title and document fees, as these are owed automatically.

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