Improve Your Auto Damage Appraiser Estimates With This Trick

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Improve Your Auto Damage Appraiser Estimates

Above is a podcast episode from the Independent Adjuster Podcast on, “The Number one Way to Improve Your Auto Damage Appraiser Estimates”

Last week I had a discussion with a fellow adjuster and student who was expressing his shock and surprise at how many items he missed on his auto estimates. He felt like he was a fraud and wasn’t doing a good enough job as an adjuster when he received supplements.

How many times have you felt like this in your career?
We all feel at some point that we are an imposter and always afraid that we will be “exposed” as the fraud we are. Even the most successful business entrepreneurs and high achieving individuals in all areas of life feel this (its called imposter syndrome). We know how all our flaws, inabilities, and questions we have in our head. We believe if everyone else knew what we thought, they’d call us out as the fraud we are.
The truth is when writing auto damage appraiser estimates, it can be difficult to measure how you are doing with your writing. The question then needs to be asked, “how do I continue to get better at my job?”
My suggestion to my fellow adjuster and to you the reader, is to learn from your supplements…… and mistakes. I am going to release your right now from having to write a “perfect” auto damage appraiser estimate. It won’t happen, you will miss clips, operations, and possibly hidden damage. This doesn’t release you from improving, just learn from your supplements and mistakes.
What is a supplement? – If you are ready this article chances are you know what a supplement is, but for those that may not, a supplement is a submission by a repairer for additional damages that was missed on an original estimate that has already been submitted to the insurance company.
Reviewing these supplements as they come in from repairers will give you great insight into what you are consistently missing and what is required to complete the repairs that you wrote for. If you see the same items over and over, make sure you understand the operations and start adding them to your estimates when they are appropriate.
We as auto damage appraisers estimate writers, are generally on a time crunch and have less than 30 minutes with a vehicle, but the repairer will get to spend hours, days, and sometimes weeks with the vehicle. Take what they learned about the damage and use their supplement as the Cliff Notes of the damage to the vehicle. Get the overall view and learn from it. Caring and improving is the only two ways to get an advantage in this industry. If you care enough to learn and improve you will have a brighter future than if you just stick your head in the sand and believe that you are God’s gift to the insurance industry. I can guarantee there are shops and repairers out there that would disagree.
When I first started I felt intimidated when I went to a shop because of their large and multiple page supplements. Don’t feel this way, sure there will be shops that give you a hard time, but use their knowledge and expertise they feel like sharing with you and learn. We don’t have a lot of ways to improve our craft so learn from people who work with the vehicle day in and day out.
Learn from your supplements….. and mistakes. To me it’s the number 1 way to improve your writing as an auto damage appraiser.
Enjoy learning? Learn more about becoming an independent auto damage appraiser or adjuster? Visit and try out the free trial to the IA Path’s “Crash Course, How to Become an Auto Damage Appraiser or Adjuster in 30 Days or Less.”


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