Car Insurance Valuation Disputes

If you have had your car stolen or written-off then you will want to make sure your insurance company pays you a fair price for you car.

If the insurer's valuation seems low, then the reason is usually that the insurer is using a trade guide and then looking for cars that match the low trade guide prices.

This offer may seem reasonable from a quick glance. But close inspection of the detail will often reveal that these cars:

  • Do not have the same specification
  • Do not have similar mileage
  • Are not in similar condition
  • Do not have the same level of service history and/or remaining warranty

Follow these steps to successfully argue that the insurer should increase their pay out:

  1. Check the FAIR price of your car using Used Car Expert prices
    1. This is the national average retail price in the UK, based on real cars, that are actually on sale. It is drawn from one of the largest samples of UK data available.
  2. Check the mileage of your car against the real average mileage (shown on all Used Car Expert prices)
  3. Find cars for sale that are similar to the car you lost in terms of:
    1. Specification
    2. Mileage
    3. Condition
    4. Service history
    5. Type of retailer you bought your last car from
    6. Warranty (if relevant)
    7. Distance from where you live - car prices can vary around the country


Put all the above together in a written complaint and tell the insurer that if you do not receive an improved and more appropriate offer, you will take your complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service.

Read how this worked for another car buyer, whose story featured on BBC One TV show Rip-Off Britain.