Mazda 3 Damaged

As I left my apartment this morning to head to work, I walked through the parking lot towards my car and saw this:

Fucking brilliant!  Thanks a bunch for that one.  It happens, I know, and thankfully the person had left a note, which I truly am thankful for.  It just irks me because it’s my car and a set of paperwork that I didn’t want to have to deal with.

/ rant mode on
I have a problem with the term “accident”.  Some incidents genuinely are accidents; situations in which no preventative action could have been taken to avoid an unforeseeable outcome.  However….more than once a day I see people driving, changing lanes, or parking without using their mirrors, without looking over their shoulder, and without looking around carefully to check before barreling out of or into a parking space.  They’re too blindly occupied with the thousand other tasks that they are doing at the time.  A burger in one hand, a cigarette in the other, a phone pinned between shoulder and ear, and one elbow on the wheel.  Eventually they are bound to hit someone.  That isn’t an “accident”- it’s a “probable”.  Use your fucking mirrors people, look first, and learn how to drive!
/ rant mode off

Fortunately my workplace has been very understanding and I’ll be able to make up the hours later in the week by working late so that I can avoid taking any time off and save up my days for Christmas.

I called Progressive and started the claims process.  They have been great as always and the fact that the driver who hit my car left their full contact and insurance information has helped a lot.  So far everything has been pretty smooth, but I’m going to keep a set of running blog entries on this because it has been my experience that these processes are never quite as smooth as insurance companies would have you believe.  I’m going to head out to my Mazda body shop this afternoon to get them to look at the damage.  The insurance adjustor for Progressive seemed quite eager that I hold off on getting an estimate and wait to hear from the other driver’s insurance company: American Family Insurance as “every insurance company handles estimates differently”.  This doesn’t sit right with me so I’m going to head out to the body shop anyway and get them to take a look at it.  As far as I’m concerned, they’re going to be doing the work and an estimate is an estimate.  I have the name and contact information of the claims adjuster at American Family Insurance and I’m planning to give them a call from the body shop this afternoon to give them a number.  I just want to get the repairs done and have my car back as soon as possible to avoid cleaving my week in two.  I’d rather avoid having to drive a rental car, but I guess we’ll have to see how bad the damage is and how long it will take to fix.

Now that I’ve started the repairs part of the process, I have to start thinking about all of the things that are easy to forget such as diminished value, repair guarantees, and warranty ramifications.  I’m looking to sell this car sometime in the next year and I’m concerned about the effects that this incident may have upon the trade-in or private sale value.  A quick check of the Kelly Blue Book site shows that the trade-in value went down by almost $1000 and that the private sale value dropped by about the same amount.  That’s not terrible news and it could have been a lot more but considering that I haven’t yet seen any of the other expenses of this process and I’m already potentially $1000 down isn’t good.

Alright, time to head down to the body shop and see what they can tell me.  Wish me luck!

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