Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Denver, CO
Car: 2017 Outback Premium w/eyesight
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
I agree with eagleye about that only being a "pre-estimate." I could be wrong, but I believe insurance companies often do that in the hope that you will just cash out and not have the car fully repaired, saving them money on what would be an otherwise costly repair. It works in their favor if you never have it repaired at a shop.
My 2016 Forester got caught in a bad hail storm last May. The initial "pre-estimate" was only around $1500, which they wrote the initial check for. One the body shop had the chance to Remove/Install various parts and see the extent of damage as well as hidden damage, the actual repair cost, through supplemental claims, ended up ballooning over $7500. This from one of their own "preferred" shops, so they couldn't much argue.
Don't be surprised if that $8300 "pre-estimate," balloons and reaches the "totaled" threshold before all is said and done.
The representative who initially called me from the insurance company stated that they would use "new" parts for the repair, as long as I had the work done at one of their "preferred" shops, but would not guarantee them if I went to a shop of my choosing, since the car was more than 1 year old from its date of manufacture. Calling her supervisor, he told me that since it was a 2016 and less than a year old from purchase, they would approve "new", not "refurbished/rebuilt" on the car regardless of manufacture date or where I took it.
Don't be afraid to go over the head of the agent you spoke with to get clarification on any questions if you are not certain they are correct. I received a much more reassuring answer from the supervisor than I did from the initial agent who called. Likely, because she lacked the authority to make a promise of "new", where the supervisor could.
You should have the right to take your car to the shop of your choosing, not only the ones your or their insurance company recommends. If you aren't comfortable with the first one, find another you feel comfortable working with. There has to be a level of confidence and trust.