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Quotes - advice needed

Posted: Mon Jul 03, 2017 11:09 pm
by netboy
I'm renewing my comprehensive insurance and am just looking for advice.

Both quotes are within $50 of each other when it comes to the premium, but with one the excess is a standard $600, whereas the other is about $2800 (due to an agreed higher excess to reduce the premium).

However, the insurer with the higher excess does agreed value only, with my car valued at at least $5,000 more than its current market value.

My question is, should I go with the quote with the (much) lower excess in the hope I don't have to make a claim that results in a total loss, or do I take the quote with the higher excess in the hope that I don't have to make an at-fault claim?

Further to this point: I've heard that even in cases where one party is clearly not at fault (and the insurer agrees with this), the not at-fault party still has to pay their excess if the other party is uninsured, or refuses to make a claim, and the excess is not refunded until such time as the insurer (of the not at-fault party) can recover the amount of the claim - is this true?

If it is, I'd be more inclined to go with the lowest excess possible, even though it would mean being covered for a lower amount in the event of a total loss.

Re: Quotes - advice needed

Posted: Mon Jul 03, 2017 11:40 pm
by Hardy
I would be going for the lower excess.
Else you are self-insuring for any damage under $2800.
The chance of a small prang is much greater than the chance of a total loss.

Re: Quotes - advice needed

Posted: Tue Jul 04, 2017 1:12 am
by netboy
Yes that's what I was leaning towards as well, Sean, thanks for the prompt reply.

Do you have any knowledge of the issue of a comprehensively insured party still having to pay their excess even if they are completely not at fault, such as in the situations I mentioned?

Re: Quotes - advice needed

Posted: Tue Jul 04, 2017 8:45 am
by Hardy
Ask your insurer about that, but these days most insurers will not charge the excess if you are not at fault and you can provide the name and address of the person liable.

Re: Quotes - advice needed

Posted: Tue Jul 04, 2017 5:31 pm
by Gravy
I would suggest that it is worth looking into which insurer, if either, offer you a choice of repairer. I never used to worry about this until I had a conversation with a person who told of a few horror stories relating to insurers taking the cheaper, incomplete repair estimate rather than the more expensive yet more thorough repair. The end result may matter to what you're driving around in post-repair - you don't wan't some turkey who's "bought the job" by not bothering about a slightly bent control arm, or cutting costs by using dodgy parts working on your vehicle. Choice of repairer can help reduce the issue.

Re: Quotes - advice needed

Posted: Thu Jul 06, 2017 12:53 am
by netboy
Thanks for the advice all. I hadn't considered the choice of repairer issue; I'll ask both potential insurers about that.

One further thought - I presume that the value the car is insured at (i.e. whether this is a lower market value or a higher "agreed" value) would factor in to whether the insurer decides to fix a car with a damage bill close to the insured amount, or declaring it a total loss and paying out that amount?

For example, if I decided to go with the insurer offering $20,000 agreed value, and had an incident with costs totalling $15,000, I presume the insurer would decide to repair the car, as opposed to deeming it a total loss (given the $5k difference), whereas at a market value of $15k, the car would automatically be deemed a total loss?

Whilst I'm not planning on having a major crash and do drive in a very aware manner, I would like to be aware of these nuances.

Re: Quotes - advice needed

Posted: Thu Jul 06, 2017 2:15 am
by freddie
God I saw the thread title and I was hoping it was Stroppy enquiring about how to reply to a post without quoting the whole thing in its entirety

Re: Quotes - advice needed

Posted: Thu Jul 06, 2017 8:54 am
by Gravy
netboy wrote:Whilst I'm not planning on having a major crash and do drive in a very aware manner, I would like to be aware of these nuances.
Definitely. People don't tend to pay a lot of attention to their insurance policies until they need to make a claim - precisely the time that you DON'T want any surprises! Good on you.

The short answer to your write off question is yes, as I understand it. There are likely to be grey areas, or a range in which they would apply some discretion, but I think you have the concept correct.

Freddie - :lol:

Re: Quotes - advice needed

Posted: Tue Aug 01, 2017 12:29 am
by stroppy
I was shunted nose to tail a few years back causing quite a bit of damage to the front and rear of the car. I had agreed value on it because I had kept the car in immaculate condition. The car was towed to my preferred panel beater and he checked it out. He basically said my insurer would write the car off because of the way their policy works. So I had to plead long and hard with the insurer to have the car repaired. Fortunately the panel beater was on my side and finally it was agreed that the car could be fixed. I should have read the fine print of my policy a little bit more carefully! The car was repaired and it was like new when I picked it up. That saved me having to take a real financial hit to pay for a new car.

Re: Quotes - advice needed

Posted: Tue Aug 01, 2017 6:33 pm
by Hardy
Fortunately the panel beater was on my side

It is pretty hard to find a repairer who is not interested in being paid to repair a write-off.

Re: Quotes - advice needed

Posted: Tue Aug 01, 2017 6:52 pm
by Gravy
:lol: Stroppy - the panel beater wasn't on your side, he was on his own side. It just so happened that your interests aligned, which has nothing at all to do with him agreeing with you. If the car is written off he can't make a profit out of repairing it, can he?

Re: Quotes - advice needed

Posted: Wed Aug 02, 2017 3:55 am
by stroppy
Gravy wrote::lol: Stroppy - the panel beater wasn't on your side, he was on his own side. It just so happened that your interests aligned, which has nothing at all to do with him agreeing with you. If the car is written off he can't make a profit out of repairing it, can he?


Yes, he was on my side because the insurer insisted that the car be written off. The panel beater is a family friend. I saw the letters from the insurance company. The repairs cost more than writing the car off. They pressed him to tell me the car was not worth repairing. In the end he agreed to keep the repair price at the write-off amount. How he managed it I don't know. All I DO know is that the car was returned to me BETTER than new because all the panel irregular gaps left in the car by GM Holden were now equal...the headlights no longer allowed water inside and the engine mounts did not shudder at regular intervals. In effect my car back to me with excellent paintwork, a better gloss on the bumpers (as he used the two pack system not yet in use by Holden) and an engine which had been thoroughly inspected on the bench before it went back in. It pays to have friends in the industry.

You see, Gravy...once again you have made assumptions about me or what I have written without knowing the whole story. A sad habit of yours or just your basic trolling. Which is it?

Re: Quotes - advice needed

Posted: Wed Aug 02, 2017 2:42 pm
by Gravy
Whatever. You keep believing that he was only ever in it for your interests if that makes you feel warm and fuzzy inside. It doesn't really affect anyone else and I'm sure that a reasonably intelligent reader of this thread will come to an appropriate conclusion.

Re: Quotes - advice needed

Posted: Thu Aug 03, 2017 9:11 pm
by stroppy
Gravy wrote:Whatever. You keep believing that he was only ever in it for your interests if that makes you feel warm and fuzzy inside. It doesn't really affect anyone else and I'm sure that a reasonably intelligent reader of this thread will come to an appropriate conclusion.


Did you miss the bit where I said he was (is) a family friend? One that has been a friend for nearly fifty years and to whom we turn if our cars suffer minor damage at the hands of idiotic vandals or people who ding your doors in shopping centre carparks? Like I said, I saw the "tell him it's a write off!" letters. I'm sure a reasonably intelligent reader with decent comprehension will be able to understand what I wrote.