Not all of us are fortunate enough to live in an area where hail damage is not a problem. For those of us who aren’t that lucky, hail damage to our exposed cars is always an issue. We were curious to see how much does hail damage devalue a car.
How Much Does Hail Damage Devalue a Car?
The general answer is that hail damage devalues your car in roughly the amount it would take to repair the car. So you should consider how and if to repair it based on the factors we’ll be discussing in the rest of this article.
Much of the answer to both questions lies in your insurance coverage and how you were planning to dispose of your car, You also should ask yourself if you can live with a car that looks like someone took a ball peen hammer to the entire outside. Let’s examine some of the factors that go into answering these questions.
Can Hail Damage Result in My Car Being Totaled?
Yes. When the cost of repairs is over 70% of your car’s value, insurance companies will consider the car totaled. This is particularly an issue if you own an older-model automobile.
Insurance and Deductible
How much insurance do you have, and what is your deductible? Here are some things to consider:
What Kind of Coverage Applies?
Auto insurance policies only cover hail damage if you maintain comprehensive coverage. If you carry only public liability and property damage coverage, you are out of luck – your insurance won’t cover your hail damage.
Assuming You Carry Comprehensive Coverage
The question to ask yourself next is, ‘How much is my deductible?’ Obviously, the higher your deductible, the more you’re going to have to pay out of pocket to get the car repaired. Is it also worth it to you to lose the use of your car during the repair period?
Will My Rates Increase?
If you decide that, after considering the above factors, you want to make an insurance claim to repair your car, will your insurance rates go up? It depends on your state’s insurance regulations and your insurance carrier’s rating system, but in general the answer is usually no, it won’t.
Disposition of a Hail-Damaged Car
If you plan to trade your hail-damaged car into a dealer for a newer model, the dealer may not take the retail value of the repair off the normal trade-in price, particularly if the dealer does his own body work. If you plan on selling the car to a third party, though, plan on having to take the value of repair off the asking price.
Is it worth it to take the lower value for the car? Again, that depends on your deductible. If you had a $5,000 deductible, and can get the amount of the Blue Book value minus the total repair cost, it would be worth it. This is an economic decision you should think about before deciding your car’s disposition.