Auto Insurance Claims/Costs of driving


Would an insurance expert know all the stats on repair costs for vehicles and how frequently they are done when there has been no accidents? I am trying to calculate by miles how expensive it is to run my car for work related travel. I suspect I am not coming close to breaking even. Some Forbes article claimed around 75 cents a mile but I don't know how they calculated that other than maybe average miles, cost of insurance, depreciation, and all costs one would pay whether or not their travel was work related or not. I can't find an expert on this subject. Not sure even mechanics keep generalized stats on repairs and maintenance they do. Any direction would be helpful.

This is done by calculating depreciation using a known method.  Many states have in their tax code a method defined that shows how to calculate depreciation on an asset like a vehicle.  You would have to assume an "average" amount of miles per year (12000 or so), and then all the other costs are incorporated into the ownership.  

Generally you would use a "take price" (what it could sell for right now), then you would estimate the value of the vehicle at the end of it's useful life (has increased to 8 - 10 years on a used vehicle).  The value at the end of the useful life is normally called a "salvage value", and it hovers between 20 and 35 percent of the take price depending on make and model.

So, a 10000 vehicle might be worth 3000 at the end of 8 years use and that would show a yearly depreciation of $875.00, make sense?  This is the only way I know of to estimate the cost of owning a vehicle.  Many manufacturers will estimate this type of cost in their sales brochures (like Honda claiming very low maintenance cost and such).  

Auto Insurance Claims

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Justin Petty


Challenge me! I promise that I will provide you with the most honest answer I can muster, and I will base it on nearly 20 years of complex claims experience. My strength is shooting it straight and seeing through BS. I do not bluff and I can tell when somebody is. I've handled claims in almost every State in the U.S. and adjusted claims and consulted attorneys and CEO's on recovery and special claims tactics for over a decade. I am the founder and President of Petty Details, LLC. We provide the highest quality claim services to insurance companies, attorneys and individuals all exactly in the same way, by paying attention to the details and doing the right thing.


Nearly 20 years of combined claim company management, litigation, all lines adjusting, claim auditing, damage assessment, subrogation, small claims, tort recovery, collection, skip-tracing, tactical investigations, and contribution claim recovery experience across the United States of America.

NASP (National Association of Subrogation Professionals) (Auto Insurance Expert) Diminished Value Appraisers Group (LinkedIn)

10 years experience in writing and developing technical claims correspondence for litigation and unique scenarios at insurance companies and as a consultant to attorneys assisting with legal briefs and research. 42 published articles relating to auto insurance and claims. Self Published e-books entitled "How Much is My Injury Worth" and "Diminished Value - How Do I Get Paid?".

School of hard knocks, 3 years college, NO DEGREE, years of real world experience running a claims service company and adjusting claims for carriers. Speaks English and Spanish, Limited Portuguese & Italian.

Awards and Honors
Platinum Author ( All Lines Adjuster (TX, 1998 - 2008) TX Public Adjuster (2009 - 2011)

Past/Present Clients
State Farm Insurance, Endeavor GA, MileMeter Ins., American Recreational Markets, Gainsco Ins. Co., Safeway Ins., Home State County Mutual Insurance, Old American County Mutual Insurance, FCCI, Farm Bureau, Liberty Mutual, and Pronto General Agency, LTD just to name a few! On top of insurance companies and attorneys, I have personally helped thousands of accident victims with the difficult and stressful process of navigating their claim to a successful resolution.

©2016 All rights reserved.