By CRM Staff
Toronto, Ontario -- April 11, 2018 -- Several days ago, the newest “Inside Edition” looked at whether photo estimations, which are becoming a popular option for insurance customers, are as effective as in-person estimates, reports our partner publication Repairer Driven News.
During the episode the program showed footage of the owner of Mid-Island Collision, Robert Jesberger, who says that photo estimates are being used by insurers to cheat customers. Jesberger went on to say that the estimates being provided by the insurers do not acknowledge safety or liability issues.
Viewers then saw a customer who received an initial estimate of $1,700, using the photo estimate feature many insurers now offer. The ultimate total of repairs actually came to $11,667. Another misled customer went so far as to claim that photo estimates always underestimates the extent of repairing a vehicle will require.
As reported by Repairer Driven News, a photo estimate and an in-person estimate from an insurance appraiser share at least one thing: they are both incomparable to the estimate a repair shop will provide a customer. While an in-person estimate may be more accurate than a photo estimate, given the customer accounts seen during “Inside Edition,” it still would not be as succinct as an estimate from a collision repair facility.
Ultimately, an insurance company’s estimate cannot replace the OEM-specific repair procedures that collision repairers use to perform the work needed, or the expertise of a repairer needed to determine what work that is exactly.