Friday, July 20, 2012

SAVIOR OR ANTI-CHRIST? AN ARTICLE ABOUT CARFAX AND AUTOMOBILE DIMINISHED VALUE IN FLORIDA


AUTOMOBILE DIMINISHED VALUE IN FLORIDA 

JUPITER, Florida - Whenever I have a few hours to kill between automobile, truck and RV appraisals you'll find me introducing myself to all sorts of different people. From banks to insurance agents to truck repairers to RV dealers to auto body shops, my audience of potential customers is practically limitless and I'm not shy about dropping in to say hello. Rather than trying to sell someone on my services, my approach is a simple introduction and declaration that I'm leaving them with a few St. Lucie Appraisal business cards. Sometimes a conversation ensues but more often than not I'm in and out pretty quickly. There are, however, instances that cause me to step back a few paces. My visit to Schmidt's Auto Body in Jupiter, Florida provided me with one such occasion and it was a doozy! It began with  a discussion about Automobile Diminished Value in Florida and ended with the shop owner calling me "the anti-Christ." Say what?

For readers who aren't aware of Automobile Diminished Value in Florida, when your late-model car is repaired after being damaged in a collision, a CARFAX history report becomes a permanent part of the vehicle. The fact that the vehicle was previously repaired makes it inherently less desireable than a similar car that was never damaged. Consequently, when you trade your car in and the dirty CARFAX is discovered, your new car dealer will naturally offer you less than the trade-in value. He has to do it because your vehicle, unfortunately, is now less desirable to his customers. Most used-car buyers, naturally, prefer cars that were never in accidents. This difference essentially represents your Automobile Diminished Value and it can reach the tens of thousands of dollars.

In Florida, if the accident was caused by the other driver, you can make a claim against their insurance company for that difference. This privelege is written into all insurance policies, their guarantee to indemnify their policyholder. I can understand why Allstate, Geico, Progressive and the rest of the insurors aren't too thrilled with how Florida's courts have upheld Automobile Diminished Value as a basic right. But a body shop guy?

The owner of Schmidt's Auto Body of Jupiter, Florida doesn't believe in Automobile Diminished Value. His very loud opinion was that everyone involved in it, from the scummy car dealers to the appraiser trying to obtain compensation for the car owner right down to the poor guy whose 2012 Lexus was rear-ended are the lowest of the low. He didn't, of course, offer any solution or other enlightenment. Let the vehicle owner be the one to absorb the financial hit seemed to be his message. So after his little diatribe, a suggestion where I could stick my business card and a new name for me - the "anti-Christ" - I backed out of there quickly.

The name of his town is Jupiter and even though I know that it's not THAT Jupiter, somehow, after leaving Schmidt's, I began to get the feeling I actually was on another planet.

The St. Lucie Appraisal Company
P.O. Box 2700
Fort Pierce, FL 34954
Phone: (772) 359-4300
Fax: (772) 466-8400
Email: contact@stlucieappraisal.net

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http://stlucieappraisal.net/
AUTO & PERSONAL PROPERTY
SERVICE THROUGHOUT SOUTH FLORIDA

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The fee for an Automobile Diminished Value Report is $275.00. You may also make your Credit Card Payment by telephone, call 772-359-4300. Credit card payments can be made on the PayPal page. Click on "Don't have a PayPal account?" to be taken to the secure credit card payment page. 

After making your secure payment please email the body shop estimate or the insurance company appraisal to contact@stlucieappraisal.net or FAX to 772-466-8400.

NOTE: TESLA OR OTHER EXOTIC CAR OWNERS PLEASE CALL 772-359-4300 TO ARRANGE FOR AN AUTOMOBILE DIMINISHED VALUE APPRAISAL.