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  #1  
Old 07-08-2020, 11:36 AM
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1990 560SEL, diminished value after accident?

My 1990 560SEL was recently involved in a fender bender when a young driver ran a stop sign. I saw her at the last second and was able to brake and swerve enough that the damage is literally a fender bender, just the left front fender, corner light and headlight door were damaged. The body shop was able to get an original fender and headlight door from the dealer but the corner light had to be aftermarket.

My question for the forum is regarding diminished value because of the accident. The car came from Texas is rust free, runs perfect, everything works and had never been in an accident. Now I'm arguing with the insurance company over the car's value. I feel it's now worth less since there's an accident on its record. The insurance company says it doesn't matter since the damage was minor (repairs were $1500. With original parts). I've been looking for the right older Mercedes and when I find it I was planning to sell this one in order to fund the new purchase. Now, with the accident I think I'll get less for the 560.

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  #2  
Old 07-08-2020, 11:52 AM
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The insurance company doesn't care what kind of condition your car is in, they go by algorithms based on the original sales price of the car, average mileage, average depreciation, and average condition. You're paying the same insurance rate for a showroom-quality example as someone driving around with literal see-through rust holes in the doors.

Unless you have a contractual "agreed value" insurance policy, you're fighting a losing battle. Have a discussion with a nearby wall, you'll get much further with it than you will with the insurance company.
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  #3  
Old 07-08-2020, 04:26 PM
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A non structural repair should not affect the value unless it is a concourse trailer queen....is it?
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Old 07-08-2020, 04:44 PM
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do you want it to be worth less so your premium is lower?
usually that argument is going the other way!

if you have pictures of the minor daamge and receipts it shouldn't dissuade a serious buyer or impact the value that much
Quote:
Originally Posted by bolomiester View Post
My 1990 560SEL was recently involved in a fender bender when a young driver ran a stop sign. I saw her at the last second and was able to brake and swerve enough that the damage is literally a fender bender, just the left front fender, corner light and headlight door were damaged. The body shop was able to get an original fender and headlight door from the dealer but the corner light had to be aftermarket.

My question for the forum is regarding diminished value because of the accident. The car came from Texas is rust free, runs perfect, everything works and had never been in an accident. Now I'm arguing with the insurance company over the car's value. I feel it's now worth less since there's an accident on its record. The insurance company says it doesn't matter since the damage was minor (repairs were $1500. With original parts). I've been looking for the right older Mercedes and when I find it I was planning to sell this one in order to fund the new purchase. Now, with the accident I think I'll get less for the 560.
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  #5  
Old 07-08-2020, 06:44 PM
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I donít think itíll loose value. I would take extra care to make sure the panels line up and The lines are symmetrical with the rest of the car. donít Want it to look like it was slapped together. For me thatís what I look for when I buy older cars.
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  #6  
Old 07-08-2020, 07:29 PM
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As mentioned, it won't matter IF it is repaired really well. If the car was a 15K mile museum piece it would matter a little.
Explain to the body shop your expectations, if they start with excuses move on toward a top-shelf repair shop.

Good luck!!!
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  #7  
Old 07-09-2020, 02:23 AM
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It never worth much to start with. Get over it. It was better to be totaled in my opinion. Pocket the money and move on.
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  #8  
Old 07-09-2020, 08:42 AM
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I use agreed value Hagerty insurance for just that reason. I have a 560SL in really pristine condition. I have it insured for $25K. I would be very luck if I could sell the car for $15K , but it would easily cost me $25K to find a new one and bring it up to the same level. Plus my agreed value insurance cost less than when I had it insured by normal means. I assume that mostly because of the low mileage I put on each year. Hagerty refused to insure it the first time I applied and asked me to re apply 1 year later. I think they wanted to see how much mileage I was really putting on it.
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  #9  
Old 07-09-2020, 10:43 AM
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As long as the original damage was well documented (pictures) and a detailed report of the work done to fix it was made, it should not affect the value of the car significantly.
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  #10  
Old 07-09-2020, 11:59 AM
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I hear what everyone is saying. It just seems so wrong. The insurance is repairing the car but, through no fault of my own it seems like it's now worth less. I guess I'll just have to hope for the best when I sell it. Anyone want a nice 2nd generation 560SEL?
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  #11  
Old 07-09-2020, 07:55 PM
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This is a very serious issue - Classic Motorsports magazine had an article about just this subject in a recent issue: https://classicmotorsports.com/articles/crash-course-diminished-value/
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  #12  
Old 07-10-2020, 02:36 AM
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The best time to address this issue is at the time of the repair. If the repair is done correctly then the value is not diminished. In my state we can pick the shop that does the repair. I would require the work be done at the shop that does all the work for the dealer and specializes in Mercedes and BMW. At this point the car has been fixed so you are stuck with whatever you have, excepting any defects that are covered by any kind of guarantee. Of course keeping in mind that the people fixing any defect will be the ones who caused the defect...
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  #13  
Old 07-10-2020, 12:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mpolli View Post
If the repair is done correctly then the value is not diminished.
This is how things used to be and what the insurance companies want you to believe, but it no longer works that way in in today's information-overload age.

Put yourself in the buyer's shoes: You're in the market for an interesting classic and have narrowed it down to a specific make/model. You're lucky enough to find two examples near to where you live and you go to see them both; they're both equally-well optioned and both in great condition. You start your due diligence by having a pre-purchase inspection done on both by your favorite mechanic, who really knows the brand, and the mechanic says they're both in tip-top shape. Next, you go to the Internet and run Carfax reports on both, and one comes back showing accident damage, while the other is completely clean.

If both cars are the same price, which one would you buy? Yes, me too - the one with the clean report. The owner of the one showing damage on its report is going to have to lower the price in order to incent you to buy it. This is diminished value.

In some cases, if the car is rare enough and a buyer is unlikely to find two examples on the market at the same time, or if you're not planning to sell the car any time soon, the diminished value may be insignificant, but in other cases it can be a real problem.

Bolomeister - read the article and take whatever action you think is appropriate, but it's no too late to do something if you believe the diminished value is enough to make pursuing a claim worth your while.

Best Regards,
Rob
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  #14  
Old 07-10-2020, 12:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bolomiester View Post
I feel it's now worth less since there's an accident on its record. I've been looking for the right older Mercedes and when I find it I was planning to sell this one in order to fund the new purchase. Now, with the accident I think I'll get less for the 560.
It's a 30 year old car of which many examples were produced. How much do you "feel" it was worth before the accident? How much after the repairs?
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  #15  
Old 07-10-2020, 01:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bolomiester View Post
I hear what everyone is saying. It just seems so wrong. The insurance is repairing the car but, through no fault of my own it seems like it's now worth less. I guess I'll just have to hope for the best when I sell it. Anyone want a nice 2nd generation 560SEL?
Is it driveable?

How many miles on it? Price? You can PM me here on site... I will come out and see/drive her--asap

thx

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