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Can You Get Insurance For a Salvage Title Car

Can You Get Insurance For a Salvage Title Car

Getting insurance for a salvage or rebuilt title car is a bit of a different animal than getting regular insurance.

I think first I need to identify the difference between a Salvage Title and a Rebuilt Title.

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What is a Salvage Title?

A salvage title is issued when an insurance company declares a vehicle a total loss, usually due to extensive damage from an accident, theft, or natural disaster. The criteria for a salvage title vary by state but almost always kick in when repair costs exceed 60-90% of the car’s pre-damage value.

Important Difference: Salvage title cars cannot be legally driven, registered, or insured until they are repaired, inspected, and issued a rebuilt title.

Fact: Both Salvage and Rebuilt Title cars are considered “Branded titles“.

What is a Rebuilt Title?

Once a salvage car has been repaired and passes a state-mandated inspection to ensure it is roadworthy, it can be issued a rebuilt title.

A rebuilt title allows you to get the car registered and insured so you can legally drive it.

However, it will still carry a permanent record of its salvage history, which can affect its insurability and resale value.

Note: There is no way to remove a branding of rebuilt from the title of a rebuilt car.

Can You Insure a Salvage Title Car?

No, you cannot insure a vehicle with a salvage title since it is not considered roadworthy or legal to drive. To get insurance, you must first have a salvaged car repaired, inspected, and re-titled as a rebuilt vehicle.

Can You Insure a Rebuilt Title Car?

Yes, you can insure a rebuilt title car, but it will be more difficult and expensive than insuring a vehicle with a clean title.

Some insurance companies will not cover rebuilt salvage cars at all, while others will only offer liability coverage rather than full coverage with collision and/or comprehensive.

Insurers are often hesitant to cover rebuilt title vehicles because:

  • There may be hidden or unrepaired damage that increases the risk of future claims
  • It can be difficult to distinguish between pre-existing and new damage after an accident
  • Rebuilt salvage cars typically have a lower resale value, which may not align with standard insurance valuation models

To get insurance for a rebuilt title car, you may need to:

  • Provide detailed documentation of the repairs, including receipts, photos, and mechanic’s statements
  • Allow the insurer to inspect the vehicle to assess its condition and roadworthiness
  • Accept a potentially higher premium than an equivalent car with a clean title

Which Companies Insure Rebuilt Title Cars?

While some major insurers will not cover rebuilt salvage cars, there are several well-known companies that do, including:

  • Progressive
  • Allstate
  • State Farm
  • Farmers
  • The General
  • National General
  • Infinity

Coverage options and availability can vary by state and individual vehicle circumstances. It’s best to shop around, compare quotes, and speak with a real agent to find the best policy.

How Much Does Rebuilt Title Car Insurance Cost?

Insuring a rebuilt title vehicle costs about 20-50% more than an equivalent car with a clean title. The exact cost will depend on factors like:

  • The extent of the previous damage and repairs
  • Your driving record and insurance history
  • Your location and the insurer’s rebuilt title policies
  • The level of coverage you need (liability only vs. full coverage)

On average, you can expect to pay anywhere from a few hundred to over a thousand dollars more per year to insure a rebuilt title car compared to a clean title vehicle.

    My Conclusion

    Insuring a salvage or rebuilt title car can be more complex and costly than a vehicle with a clean history, but it is still possible. The key points to getting insurance for a rebuilt title car are:

    1. Make sure the car has been properly repaired, inspected, and re-titled as rebuilt
    2. Shop around and compare quotes from insurers willing to cover rebuilt titles
    3. Provide thorough documentation of the vehicle’s repairs and condition
    4. Be prepared to pay a somewhat higher premium for coverage


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    Picture of Steve Momot - Author

    Steve Momot - Author

    Steve, a seasoned expert in the automotive industry, formerly held a car dealer license in Florida. With extensive experience spanning across car trading and mechanical work, he founded Autohitch. His mission? To guide both buyers and sellers through the intricate maze of car purchasing, ensuring a seamless and informed experience. Outside of the automotive world, Steve has a passion for fishing and capturing the beauty of nature through photography.


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