I have a Toyota 4Runner Limited - V8, 4x4, nav, you name it. During our oh-so-wonderful hail experience last week (I was momentarily knocked our by a softball-sized chunk of the stuff), it received a lot of damage -broken windows, almost every panel dinged, etc.
The insurance company has declared the car a total loss.
Their settlement offer is fair, and leaves about $5k above what we owe.
I would love to buy back the car from the insurance company. I have the time, tools and expertise to fix the cosmetic damage, and it is mechanically perfect. (06, < 100k miles).
I asked the adjuster if we could keep the car, and she said that wasn't an option because we had a loan on the car.
Am I missing something? I've been googling and haven't heard of an insurance company refusing to let the policy holder to buy back the car because it has a lien, especially given that the lien will be paid off by the settlement check. If the salvage value exceeded the difference, I'd be willing to pay the difference up to a certain amount.
The situation is complicated by the fact that I'm currently consulting, which is basically "unemployed" from the point of view of a bank. Getting another car loan at the moment will be difficult.
Suggestions? We live in Texas. The insurer is Infinity Auto.
I found a (very convoluted and silly) solution, and got the insurance company to buy on (ha) to it:
I have to pay off the loan - fortunately we can do that - and get the title in my name. At that point, the insurance will return the car and the settlement check, less the salvage value. That works out to loaning SOMEONE - not sure whom - a bunch of money for a few weeks, but the check we will get back is within a few hundred dollars of the payoff amount.
Thanks everyone for the advice.