Your vehicle was involved in an accident and now it’s totaled. But you loved that car, and you think you can get it road-worthy again.
Can you buy it back here in North Carolina?
Here’s what you need to know.
How a Car is Determined to Be Totaled
A totaled vehicle is one in which the cost to repair it costs nearly as much as it’s worth, typically exceeding 75 percent of its actual cash value (ACV). For example, if the ACV of your car is $10,000 but the cost to repair it after an accident is $8,000, an auto insurance company will consider your car a total loss.
How does an insurer decide the value of the vehicle? The formula is fairly complicated and determined by a variety of factors. In general, insurers figure out the cost to purchase a comparable vehicle and then deduct value based on specific factors such as age of vehicle, mileage, and condition before the accident.
Keeping a Totaled Car
In general, once the insurance company pays you the ACV for your totaled car, the vehicle now belongs to them. They sell it at auction or to a salvage yard and recoup some of what they paid you for it.
If you want to keep your totaled vehicle, you can buy it from your insurer, but it’s important to let them know right away. If you wait until after you’ve been paid and the vehicle is off at auction, you may not be able to get it back.
Talk to your insurance company and let them know you want to buy back your totaled car. They’ll estimate what they likely would have received at auction and deduct that amount from your ACV payout. You’ll receive less money, but you’ll get to keep your car.
Should You Buy Back Your Totaled Car in North Carolina?
This is a tricky question because although you’re allowed to buy back a totaled vehicle in North Carolina, it might not always be the best choice for everyone.
When your car is labeled as a total loss by the insurance company, the title changes to a salvage title. This is a designation that means your vehicle has had enough damage to drastically lower its value.
Most insurance companies will not insure vehicles with salvage titles. Those that will usually only offer liability coverage. If you intend to fix your car and drive it again, liability insurance isn’t enough to financially protect you from what can happen out on the road.
Before you buy back a totaled vehicle, talk to your independent insurance agent about getting auto insurance with a salvage title. That way, you have all the information you need to make the best decision for you. Contact Charlotte Insurance today for all your auto insurance needs!