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  1. 3 days ago vandals ran amok in our (quiet) estate. I had stupidly gone to bed without locking the door, leaving my bunch of keys on the table inside. Until 3 weeks ago I had a dog who let no-one in until he'd checked them out - he died suddenly, age 15y. Long story short, thugs came in (about 3am) took my cash and keys, drove my car round the corner and stuffed the petrol inlet with plastic bags and set light to it!!!! First I knew was police at my door in the morning asking where I parked my car....I pointed to my drive...no car!!....3 hours of statements, forensics, CSI etc. They said just to call my insurance. However, during 3 days I've learned a lot. Thankfully the milkman saw the fire, called the fire brigade and police so the fire didn't get out of control. I saw the car damage that didn't look too bad - mangled plastic burnt to a cinder and smoke damage to the body above. Forensics had to take it away for inspection and obviously I couldn't touch it. When I spoke with the insurers they mentioned the dreaded 'your car may be a write off'.....alarm bells. I love my car. It's a Peugeot 206 cc and I've just spent £700 on MOT, service, new brakes etc. Bought it for £2300 last year. I checked Glass's value:- trade-in £700+; Private sale £1600+; Dealer £2300+. Minimum values. So, I thought I'd just pay for the damage myself as the excess is £350. However, when the mechanic (at the garage where the police left my car) checked it he found the petrol tank is a complete unit (not in parts). A new one is approx. £1000. Therefore, with all this info I have a dilemma. Do I leave it with the insurers? Who will likely want to write it off. I know I have the choice to buy it back. But I've heard horror stories of valuations etc! Basically, I want my car back. End of!!! Or, do I buy a second hand tank (I've already had quotes for less than £100), let my garage fit it (they said 1.5 hours labour)? This is the most obvious choice but I've already had to pay for new house locks, hire car (insurers won't give me one until they've assessed the damage and AGREED to repair it). Financially, it seems I could come out 'quids in' if I go through the insurers and they write it off and I buy it back. I think it's classed as Cat C? But are there more pitfalls to doing that????? Apart from the negotiating bit....I'm not too afraid of that! Well.....usually... Thing is I don't want these thugs to win!!!! Any advice would be really helpful. PS. The paintwork is fine - I checked it myself. So, it's only the petrol inlet/pipe/tank. Oh, and the spare key to be reprogrammed and another key to replace the stolen one. I know how that's done.
  2. Hi, Unfortunately last night my car was vandalized quite badly. Its a very old classic Renault and somebody picked it up and flipped it over on its side in the middle of the road. Petrol and radiator fluid everywhere, the police and fire brigade had to come and put it upright. We live down a cul-de-sac so I'm quite surprised it happened really. Both sides are completely ruined, I just hope there's no structural damage however the leaking radiator is very worrying. It was previously in almost concours condition and its a shame really because it was the car my parents got married in and has sentimental value attached to it for my mum. I have a few concerns about the insurance policy because I've never had to claim before. 1. The value is estimated at around £4k on the policy however for collectors these can trade hands for a few times that. I expect the insurer will make their own estimate of its value and base any payout on that? 2. Is it up to them as to whether they want to write it off or repair it? 3. Most worryingly, I examined the policy this morning and I am listed as the owner and registered keeper. On examining the V5 form however, my mum is the owner. We both live at the same address so it never really crossed my mind but I expect now this could be very problematic. Should I submit a form to DVLA to transfer ownership to my name before contacting my insurer or is this a bad idea? Many thanks for your time,
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