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Is it Worth It to Fix It?


We had a wonderful trip. Having the rental Chevy Tahoe really alleviated the cramped space and concern of potential car trouble while on such a long road trip. Not to mention, Sirius/XM radio offered a full 10 days of free service so we enjoyed commercial free music for the almost 40 hours we spent in the car. It was great!

New Orleans Fun

We stopped in New Orleans on the way there and on the way back. We walked all over, enjoyed the unexpected festivities associated with the football games and of course, enjoyed our beignets at the original!

Hit and Run on Our Return

Our trip was so good, that we are already planning a return trip in April when all the kids have Spring Break. And I was already planning on renting another car for that trip.

We arrived to return our rental car in good spirits with plans to head to the grocery store to restock our pantry. As we parked next to my car, we saw this….

Someone hit my car while it was parked in the rental car company’s lot. And of course, no one knew anything. And I was “parked at my own risk” according to the rental car representative (there were no signs posted as I have seen in hotel parking lots.)

My question is, after getting it checked out to make sure there is no functional damage, is this worth fixing? Is this worth filing a insurance claim for? (My deductible is $1000.) And I have no intention of selling this car, it will be driven until it dies a large, slow, hard death.


  • Reply Megan |

    What would you fix? That appears to be paint only to me. They would probably replace the bumper to fix it and that would be all out of pocket, and likely under you deductible. I would not make an insurance claim for it. It would raise your insurance costs in the long run and you wouldn’t get much benefit.

  • Reply Cwaltz |

    Hard to tell from that picture of the car has some sort of functionality issue as a result of being hit. If it does you fix it and file a report(since it was done in a rental lot you may be able during your absence it may be you e insurance company can claim it was done by a hit and run dr iver) If it doesn’t affect function then it’s a ding. Who cares? Particularly if the plan is to drive the car into the ground. Most cars kept for any.length of time get scratches and dings.

  • Reply Steveark |

    Of course you fix it and with cash, not an insurance claim. You have the same obligation to keep your car’s appearance up that you have for your house or your yard. It can be old and inexpensive but it shouldn’t have broken windows or rusted out parts and it should be kept washed. It’s a matter of personal pride that has nothing to do with not being frugal. But that’s just my opinion. My daily driver is a 2008 with nearly 200k miles. But it is clean and shiny and looks good.

  • Reply SB |

    If there is nothing mechanical, and it is just cosmetic on the dent, you can get a magic eraser, use it to rub off the other car’s paint, and call it a day with a dent.

  • Reply Cheryl |

    If there is nothing wrong mechanically just leave it. People have mentioned about student loans now will be due soon, how can you plan another road trip when you owe so much money. I can’t understand that. Bills need paid before fun.

    • Reply Laura |

      This. Plus you will need to start buying your own groceries soon. Do you have a budget that covers all of this? If you do and have money left for travel, great, but make sure everything else is covered first and have some savings since you are self employed with a variable income.

    • Reply Deborah Adamski |

      I would have to agree with this post. I personally probably would not make an insurance claim to get the vehicle fixed unless it was a true mechanical issue or effected the ability to drive the vehicle safely. I would, however, keep an eye on your recent traveling, expenses, and be aware that debt is more important to pay off than another trip, especially if you had struggles in the past with providing for the family. I feel that the children would prefer a home, utility bills paid, bills caught up to date, and enough groceries to have dinner every night. Your children are a bit older than mine were when I started this journey.

      I follow Dave Ramsey and have been able to pay off most of my debt and still have a large student loan with a mortgage. I paid off a lot of credit cards, two vehicles, and several old debts that were in the past. It takes a lot of sacrifice on the parts of myself, my husband, and our children. We did not go out much, did not travel much, and always eat at home. Now since I only have a student loan and mortgage things have gotten a bit easier but remain a struggle for me to keep the pantry, fridge, and freezer full on a full time job with overtime. My kids are “adult ages” now and occasionally tell me that they are glad to have a home and enough to eat, which means that they understand the struggles in life.

  • Reply Ashley |

    Personally, I probably wouldn’t fix it. Not sure if it’d work, but can you file a police report? If so, they may be able to request security footage (if there happens to be a camera in the parking lot, which I’d think they’d have since they have “merchandise” aka: vehicles all out there). That might lead to the possibility of getting a license plate number from the perpetrator. Maybe a long shot, but that’s my suggestion. If that fails or falls through though, I probably wouldn’t spend the money just to fix a cosmetic thing.

  • Reply Cheryl |

    My only concern with a police report is would insurance need to know? I have no idea but who wants their insurance premiums to go up?

  • Reply Messina |

    Call the police to file a report and then call your insurance company! A hit and run will not affect your premiums (it is the only type of claim that will not increase your premium). I am insured by USAA and my car was hit in my work parking garage. Unfortunately, there were no security cameras to capture the incident. An adjuster came out to assess the damage and retrieve my police report. My claim was filed and my car was fixed within 10 days. USAA also reduced my deductible by half because it was a hit and run. Now your insurance company may not do that but again this will not increase your premiums, it has no negative affect so it can’t hurt to see if you will have a payable claim after your deductible. Good luck!!

  • Reply Bluezette |

    If you decide to leave it as is, I’d get some touch-up paint and cover the scratches to prevent rusting. It may not be as much of an issue where you live (I’m in northern New England. We had snow today, so lots of car-rotting road salt.) but anything you can do to help the car last a good long time is worth considering.

  • Reply Kili |

    Agreeing with what Ashley wrote.

    Do you use your car to go visit clients? Does it need to look professional? As far as I think your client interactions are mostly/all online? Or am I mistaken?
    I really wouldn’t fork out a lot of money or even get my insurance involved if it’s just a cosmetic issue. (And it won’t raise eyebrows with clients to just fix it yourself)
    Sure it won’t look as nice as professionally done, but touching it up yourself to prevent rusting seems sufficient in my opinion.

So, what do you think ?