Walking into a body shop without a handle on how to read a repair estimate can be
pretty daunting. We want you to know exactly what's involved in the repair process,
so we've compiled a few common elements of repair estimates to build your knowledge
— before you step into a body shop.
How Estimates Are Determined
An estimate is just that — an estimate of the cost involved to safely repair your
vehicle to pre-accident condition. Repair estimates vary depending on several factors
including labor rates, parts prices and the amount of time necessary to perform
certain repairs, but the main elements are the initial estimate, the supplemental
estimate and an agreed price.
The Initial Estimate
Your claims representative will prepare an initial repair estimate so the repairs
can begin. Your claims rep also can help you understand your choices to repair your
vehicle. You have a choice in how you want your vehicle repaired: You can choose our concierge level of claims service, a repair shop in our network or your own repair shop.
The Supplemental Estimate
If the body shop you choose discovers additional damage when repairing your vehicle,
your claims representative will "reinspect" the vehicle. Reinspection
is not unusual — a vehicle involved in a crash may have damaged parts that
are not visible when the initial estimate is written but become visible once the
repairs begin. At this point, the claims representative and the body shop representative
review the damage to your vehicle together and make appropriate revisions to include
all damaged parts that are found.
Our claims representatives write estimates based on parts and labor costs associated
with the repair. If the body shop's estimate is higher or lower than ours, your
claims representative will discuss this difference with the shop, and they will
agree on a price for repairs. Your claims representative will keep you informed
of the repairs every step of the way.
Please Note: Some services described above are only available to customers who purchased coverages such as Comprehensive, Collision, Rental Reimbursement, Medical Payments, etc., before their loss. Coverage is subject to the terms of your policy. Please refer to your policy to verify which coverages you have.