How much does a car depreciate after an accident?

(Last Updated On: May 3, 2020)

Ordinarily, the value of any item or appliance reduces with use. However, certain unforeseen circumstances could speed up the rate of depreciation. It is on the back of this that we ask and hopes address the question: how much does a car depreciate after an accident?

The query above will be particularly pertinent to anyone who is pondering on obtaining a claim – on the bill of his/her insurance company – or selling of a car that was involved in the accident.

Generally, it is a given that every brand new automobile loses about 20% of its original value once driven out of the car dealership shop by its new owner. So, let’s say you took ownership of a 30,000-dollars Chevy Silverado – straight out of the car dealership – immediately, its value is $6,000 less as you take your first ride in it.

And, after using the car for one year, 40% – that is $12,000 less as it concerns the example above – of its original value will be off. In the instance of an accident, the diminished value could be 20-25% greater – or even worse in some situations

How much does a car depreciate after an accident?

However, let me quickly state here that revaluing a car that has had an accident is not as straightforward as you might be thinking. There are specific factors you will have to consider when attempting to determine the extent to which your car has depreciated after being involved in an accident; some of these factors include:

  • Pre-accident Condition

The state of the car before the accident should be brought into perspective when evaluating the worth of an accident car. In this wise, you want to look at the mileage it has covered thus far, as well as, the condition of the automobile‘s parts. Has any part developed any fault that was left unattended or unfixed before the accident? Was the car purchased as a brand new one or used one? Was the performance of the car [before the accident] at the optimum range? Providing sincere responses to these questions will form the basis for a credible evaluation. Before you wave these questions aside, you should be mindful of the fact that you may be legally obliged to give an honest report of your car’s status when it comes to getting your claim.

  • Car Model/Make

As you already know; not all cars are the same. They vary in terms of design, components, and performance, and this could play a part in determining the rate of depreciation after an accident. You will not rate the damage done to the side view mirror of a Lamborghini Huracán the same way you would do for a Ford F-150. The thing is that in the instance of an accident, cars in the class of the former tend to depreciate at a costlier rate once a major part gets damaged.

  • Level of damage

Accidents result in varying degrees of damage, and this is something that cannot be swept aside when determining the worth of an accident vehicle. While a car that has been completely wrecked may be nothing more than scraps – completely useless or valueless – one having a dent to its dashboard or any other body part may well remain useful for a few trips.

But if you will not be the type to use such (accident) auto then you will have factored in the degree of damage that has been done on the car before setting a (resale) price-tag on it. It should not go without emphasizing that the greater the severity of the accident, the higher the diminished value of the car.

You must have come this far for a reason: it is either that you desire to get a fair price for your accident car or you probably do not want to get cheated on your claim – or you wish to gain some knowledge. Whatever the case may be, you can seek the assistance of an expert car valuer anytime you find it difficult to determine the true value of your accident car. Better still, there are a couple of calculators that can be used for determining the worth of an accident car, and this calculation is done using parameters such as the severity of the damage, base loss of value, and mileage covered. You can look up some of these calculators on the internet.

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