Should I Try To Save My Deductible?

If you have damage on your vehicle that requires using your collision damage insurance coverage, you may be tempted to ask, “Where can I go and save my deductible?”. While we are all for watching a budget and saving where possible, choosing the shop that will be responsible for the safe repair of your car by price alone is not a good idea.

While we can't speak for every collision repairer in Tulsa, we can give you our perspective on why we strongly suggest you not ask, "Who will save my deductible?" but rather, “Who’s the best body shop in Tulsa?”.

Reasons you don't want to save your deductible:
  1. Legal - Your contract with your insurance carrier likely says YOU are responsible to pay the FIRST $XX.XX as a deductible. Any payment for repairs after that amount is covered by them.
  2. Trust - At Paintmaster we have spent 43+ years requesting payment from insurance companies for exactly the work we performed; nothing more. We will not pad an estimate to cover a deductible. I love how our founder put it: "If I start cheating the insurance company for you, it won't be long before you wonder if I'm cheating YOU."
  3. Safety - A reputable shop needs the full amount of the payment itemized on the bill to perform every item listed. In this day of automated braking, lane-keep assist, and other ADAS functions, you just can't skip any repair. The electronics rely on the structure of the car to be precisely as it was from the factory. Skip a step and the whole system may not work.

So if you find yourself having trouble coming up with the deductible needed to repair your car think on these things:
  1. Put the deductible on a credit card and pay it off over 2-3 months. This will be a much lower cost than ending up with a car that isn't repaired properly.
  2. Check with your lien holder to see if you can get an extension on a payment or two. They have a vested interest in the value of the car and may have a program to help.
  3. Get your deductible together before you start repairs. Once the repairs are finished the shop will need full payment within a reasonable amount of time. Storage and other fees will not be covered by insurance.
  4. If you're reading this before you've had a wreck and wonder if you can handle the deductible, you may want to revisit your terms with your agent. Also see the Oklahoma Insurance Department for pointers on Choosing your Automobile Insurance Policy.

On average someone has need of collision repair once every nine to ten years so this expense could very well be a one time payment, but a very important one. Realistically you can save much more than your deductible by getting a smaller coffee each morning. (We did say smaller... We'd NEVER suggest doing away with coffee completely!)

Information in this and other articles on this site is provided as general information only and should not be construed as legal or financial advise. The staff at Paintmaster Collision Center is trained in the art of auto body repair, painting, estimating and other related skills and have decades of experience dealing with auto body insurance claims. However, they are NOT trained or licensed to sell insurance or to provide legal advise so don’t make any decisions based solely on information found on this site.