Chevy Nova Forum banner

21 - 29 of 29 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,724 Posts
5 reasons to avoid salvage-title cars

https://www.carinsurance.com/Articles/Salvage-title-car-insurance.aspx

"The description sounds good. The miles are low and the photos are spotless.

But then there's the asterisk: It's got a salvage title.

The seller assures you the damage was cosmetic, that no structural damage occurred. He's certainly offering a substantial break on price. What should you do?

Run.

Most salvage title cars are priced at least 5 percent below market, which seems like a good deal. But in most cases the true value is much, much less. Consumer Reports calculates that a salvage-title car is worth 50 percent of its Kelley Blue Book value, at best."


This may sound a bit severe but there is no doubt that the salvage title definitely has a detrimental effect on the value of a car. The majority of vehicles with salvage titles are cars that were totaled by the insurance Co. and were bought as salvage.

My father is a vice president of claims at a major insurance Co. He is also a CPCU (chartered property casualty underwriter). He tells me that when someone comes to his insurance company wanting to insure a car with a salvage title, they automatically knock off at least 25% of the Blue Book value. So in other words if the Blue Book value is $10,000 and you total the car, the insurance company will only pay a maximum of $7,500. It may even be less than that depending on the actual estimated value after they look at it.
For a modern car daily driver that’s probably quite accurate..

Probably not relavent to classic cars as most insurance companies don’t cover classics with anything other then liability coverage.. So to have full coverage on a classic you have to go to a carrier that covers these type of vehicles.. There is usually an appraisal of the vehicle to be insured and an agreed value established upfront for the insured vehicle..
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Unless one rebuilds a car them selves and knows the repairs ..... I would not put my family inside. Same as full coverage from insurance carriers. They don't want to contend with something half fixed. Great example, buy a truck for $200. and the next owner totally wipes it out with a mechanical defect. Yes your smiling because you made five grand on a shoddy repair but the courts have a nasty habit of back tracking the prior owner to share in the liability. I didn't sell my salvage repaired vehicles. I don't need the liability over a couple grand remaining in the resale value. Even if you have no credit or money your actions will come into play.
I refused to pass some of the candidates for road worthiness due to shoddy repairs. I heard it every day, ... but I'm never going to sell it . Don't care, if it doesn't meet standards take it to someone with lower expectations.

Resale on salvage titled cars is likely 30-45% less than retail book value. Take one to a new car dealer and try trading it in...... They will laugh. Liability is a huge factor. Like insurance, one will never know when your actions become a major factor in a law suite.
You think its a great savings, .... I value my credibility and don't buy JUNK.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
920 Posts
Who here likes classic pickups? Somebody hit my sister's perfectly restored 1970 CST10 - hugger orange and white. It needed a new hood, one fender, and one radiator.

I bought it from her insurance company for $200.

I bought a new hood, one fender, and one radiator. Drove the hell out of it, got compliments wherever I went, then sold it for an astronomical amount of money a year later. Never in that one year did I cry into my beer because the title was listed as salvage.

If anyone here is awake at night because of a salvage titled first gen Nova, give me a call and I will gladly take it off your hands so you can buy a car with a clear title.:D
nnn

I'm curious how a fender hood and radiator totaled that truck unless it was 1980.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
920 Posts
I've been in the auto repair business for 50 years, body man, painter, shop manager insurance adjuster etc. I have seen more than my fair share of salvage title cars, the vast majority of them were hack jobs, superficially a lot of them looked okay on the outside, but when you did a thorough inspection you would see parts that should have been replaced but weren't, parts held on with sheet metal screws, unibody, and frames that were out of specs, cars that were put together to flip. Regardless of how well the car is repaired the perception of the public is to steer clear of salvage title cars and for good reason. Your car can be repaired meticulously but the fact is a salvage title has a negative impact on the car's value. If your car goes across the auction block of Barrets or Mecum they will announce that the car has a salvage title.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,541 Posts
My question would be did you keep control over the title the whole time this happened?
I worked with a couple that had a low milage S10 and it got totaled, they kept the truck (bought it back), I bought it from them knowing that is had been totaled. Frame was an easy fix, then just needed a front clip. I sold it, was honest, up front, that it had been totaled, but the original owners had possession of the tile the whole time, I transferred the title to me, it never showed up as a salvage title.

No clue what happened after I sold it. I did a good job getting it back to original so I was not worried about that.





Mark





.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
920 Posts
In Arizona you are required to go to the DMV with your title and tell them it has been declared a total loss, they will then issue you a title that says salvage. The Insurance company needs to see this salvage title before they can issue you payment.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
229 Posts
In the State of Missouri, you submit your repaired vehicle to the Hiway Patrol, for an inspection. They are NOT certifying it is repaired correctly, only that it doesn’t have any stolen parts on it. Then you are issued a Prior Salvage title to use for registration purposes. These vehicles may or may not be a good value for you: that depends on what you’re using it for, and how much things like that bother you personally. I sold my mother a prior salvage 4WD to use as a farm truck about 15 years. At about half price, it worked just fine, and at this point, any resale value it has is in-affected. I have fixed a dozen or so of these for myself and family, but I wouldn’t sell on to a stranger. Your liability, as the individual who did the rebuild, is just too high. IMO.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
554 Posts
I've been in the auto repair business for 50 years, body man, painter, shop manager insurance adjuster etc. I have seen more than my fair share of salvage title cars, the vast majority of them were hack jobs, superficially a lot of them looked okay on the outside, but when you did a thorough inspection you would see parts that should have been replaced but weren't, parts held on with sheet metal screws, unibody, and frames that were out of specs, cars that were put together to flip. Regardless of how well the car is repaired the perception of the public is to steer clear of salvage title cars and for good reason. Your car can be repaired meticulously but the fact is a salvage title has a negative impact on the car's value. If your car goes across the auction block of Barrets or Mecum they will announce that the car has a salvage title.
Not sure how that is any different than a car that lived its life in the Rust Belt and had floors, trunk, inner wheel houses etc completely rotted away and fixed. Not all of them are scabbed back together. Guys seem fine buying those cars. For a 50 year old car I dont see a salvage title as a big deal UNLESS I am buying a car with history or provenance like a original L79 or something like that. A salvage title doesn't make a difference on a resto mod or modified car that isnt an orginal number match car in my opinion
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
229 Posts
My current driver is a 15 year old POS, I replaced the LR quarter and rear door: the car was TOTALLED twice over. I threw on some used parts and drive it daily, about 5 years and 80k miles. When I’m done with it, it’s going to the crusher. It’s worse issue now, by far, is rust on the rear frame rails, both sides. This has nothing to do with the original collision damage, just a typical 15yr old car. My only point is, if your going to obsess about every small squeak and small imperfection, than a rebuilder isn’t going to work for you.
 
21 - 29 of 29 Posts
Top