Insurance and Salvage RV Titles
So you are in a used-car site, trying to find a good deal on a vehicle. Suddenly, a Recreational Vehicle catches your sight; an RV that you may use to travel or go on holidays with. It looks decent, and the price is by far tempting. You are hooked. However, you run a little scanning, and two words are written in a small paper face you: ‘Salvage Title’.
If you are like most people, you might probably be tempted by the price, and it is perfectly understandable, who wouldn’t want to buy an RV at a reasonable cost after all?
In the capitalistic world we live in, everyone is in an endless mission to save money. Buying a salvaged engine that doesn’t cost much seems to be a good call to make. Yet, it is not as simple as you think it might be, and you ought to know what you are getting yourself into if you consider buying one, because trust me, they can be handful to deal with.
But first, let me explain to you what does a Salvage Title mean.
What is a salvage title?
A salvage title is a form of vehicle title branding that points out that the engine has gone through some considerable damage in the past. It is considered to be a ‘total loss’. That is to say; the insurance company declares that the engine cannot be driven due to its actual state. This usually happens when the damage’s rate exceeds a certain percentage (from 75 to 90 percent), and it varies from one state to another.
Many factors can make a vehicle salvaged. As a matter of fact, a vehicle does not go from ‘normal’ to ‘salvaged’ in the blink of an eye; the process takes some time.
Let me give you some examples:
- A serious accident: If your vehicle has been in an accident, the insurance company will be more likely to declare it a total loss, (again depending on the damage percentage). If you make up your mind to keep it, this will be a salvaged vehicle.
- Flood spoilage: Flooding has been considered one of the major factors that lead to salvage, in many cases, the water dries up, the vehicle may look undamaged, but there is a great chance for the internal mechanics to be damaged, and in this case, sometimes, insurance might provide flood damage coverage, if only the comprehensive coverage is chosen.
- Theft: If someone steals your vehicle, the insurance company will pay off the vehicle, though, if it is found, the company often sells it to a salvager. The salvager will compile the parts that are missing, and add the ‘salvage title’ to it.
- Repaired antiques: Yes, that’s right! Not only natural disasters and accidents are entitled to make a vehicle salvaged, but even a perfectly garnished RV may also be a subject to a salvage title if restored for a long time.
Make no mistake, a salvage title may be added to a vehicle with minor problems that are plain to reform, and sometimes no problems at all. Tricky, isn’t it?
The difference between a ‘Non-repairable’ and ‘Salvage Title’:
Many might confuse a non-repairable vehicle with a salvage title. That is why light needs to be shed on the difference between the two:
When a vehicle is roughly damaged, it will be declared utterly useless for driving; it can on the other hand only be used for its parts, and this will be given the ‘non-repairable’ title instead of the ‘salvage’ title.
Does a Salvage Title affect insurance rates?:
Let me be honest with you, insurance, indeed, can be a real drag when it comes to salvaged vehicles. In fact, a plethora of insurance companies gets pretty cautious when dealing with them. Let me illustrate: Let’s say you have a salvaged RV, and you have been in an accident, the insurance company may feel puzzled; Is the brand new accident responsible for the damage, or the previous damage already causes the problem?
Moreover, your RV has already been inadequate to be driven, ergo; the probability of it facing problems has already been established. In this respect, your RV is not a ‘normal’ RV, and as a consequence, it is only logical that it cannot have ‘normal’ insurance.
This, on the other hand, does not mean you cannot get insurance. It is true that a salvage vehicle is challenging to insure. However, it can be possible. Get all your facts straight though – you will not be getting the cherry on top of the cake.
For instance, many insurance companies generate collision coverage on salvaged vehicles. The latter means that your insurer will pay, in most cases, 75% of the car’s value in the market. Notably, you cannot have comprehensive insurance on your salvaged vehicle, this kind of insurance usually covers any reparations, unfortunately, and your salvage title makes you lose that feature.
So before you go ahead and buy a salvaged RV, you have some calculations to do regarding the insurance part, and it is up to you to consider the trade-offs.
Can you make a salvage title “clean” again?:
And we often come across statements such as ‘My vehicle was salvaged, but I managed to get it clean again..’
So can one really make a salvage title clean? Certainly, this question gets asked a lot.
The answer to this question might not be appealing to everyone though. Regrettably, a salvage title will follow your RV forever. As soon as the salvage title is marked on your RV, it sticks around on a permanent basis. You can say that it is a stigma in your car’s history.
Be careful; some people will try to convince you that they can repair your vehicle and make it clean again and may even offer you some certificate. It is 100 percent illegal. Even though this fake ‘certificate’ was provided, as mentioned before, your vehicle’s history remains the same.
However, I have something that may intrigue you: It is known as ‘a rebuilt title’.
What is a ‘Rebuilt Title’?
I have already explained how a vehicle gets a salvage title. If a salvaged vehicle was repaired, and fully investigated by the jurisdiction ’s that handle those particular matters ‘titles’, provided the inspection was favorable, the term ‘salvage’ will be replaced by ‘rebuilt’ to demonstrate that the vehicle has, indeed, been fixed.
It is important to note, though, that a rebuilt title does not mean the vehicle is clean, everyone will nevertheless acknowledge that it was once salvaged, but the term ‘rebuilt’ is less unfavorable than ‘salvaged.’
Should you avoid getting one?
Of course not, in most cases, those vehicles undergo professional examination and maintenance, especially if they only had minor problems to work on, hence the engine may be as good as a clean one. Nonetheless, if you count on selling it, note that the price may be affected, but you can always get a good deal for it provided it been fixed precisely.
You should also take into consideration that modern cars are a mechanical phenomenon, constructed with perplexing structures and technologies that guarantee your safety in case of an accident. Getting such cars repaired on the cheap can compromise your safety measures in case of a future accident. Indeed, the car may have been constructed by a genius mechanic, but there’s no way actually to prove it. For instance, you can’t even be sure that the airbags that were installed are solid or works effectively. In fact, that is unattainable for any inspection to recognize.
It is correct that you can never guess to what extent it has been ‘precisely’ fixed, and that’s why you should have it examined by a trustworthy and qualified specialist to re-examine it and give you feedback on how well it has been fixed.
Can you get full coverage on a ‘Rebuilt Title’?:
Once a salvaged title becomes a rebuilt one (if properly tested) can be on record again, that is, it can be driven again, secured and even sold. Whether they can get full coverage or not depends solely on the RV insurance company, you are dealing with. Some consider rebuilt vehicles reliable, others, not so much; they would refuse to cover it for it is often hard to determine the exact damages of the vehicle.
Usually, the insurance company agrees to offer full coverage, but it will require some information. These details consist of:
- A certified mechanic’s declaration: In which he declare that the vehicle has been properly fixed, verified and tested.
- Photos/ videos of your vehicle: Take a look at your vehicle and see whether its roadworthy.
- Your vehicle’s repair assessment: Provides all the details about the damages that occurred to your vehicle and all the modifications that it has gone through.
Are you still confused about getting that salvaged RV?
Here are some pros and cons that can help you make up your mind:
Pros and Cons of a Salvaged Title vehicle:
|-You can get lucky finding a vehicle with minor damages.||-The repairs of the car might cost more than you have guessed it should.|
|-They are relatively cheap and cost less.||-You might have insurance problems.|
|-You can save a lot of money.||-You might take for granted important damage while buying the vehicle.|
|-You can use its good strong parts.||-Considerable risks of safety measures.|
To get the greatest worth for your money, it is always preferable to keep an eye out for a good reputable auction. Some salvage RVs may need more constant work than you want to offer. Don’t be impulsive when buying, give it time, and a listing will appear and only after a thorough evaluation you can make your deal.
Avoid projects that seem risky; they will only be troublesome.
Remember, a good mechanic with competitive skills is always a great help for your salvaged RV, so make sure you choose the right one who can fulfill your vehicle’s needs. Last but not least, make sure the RV you are going to buy is not stolen; you may be in for some unnecessary trouble that you did not sign up for. And ultimately, always listen to your intuition.
Should you go for it, after all?
So is getting that salvaged RV worth it eventually?
There is no right or wrong answer to this question really, it all depends on your comfort standards, and the time and money you are prepared to invest, but above all, it all comes down to your observation and meticulousness.
It is always advisable to go with your gut-feeling, but a background check could as well come in handy when it comes to such procedures and investments.