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Write or wrong?

My husband recently met with a car accident due to black ice. There is a lot of damage to the car - the front bumper, hood and the back bumper are totally messed up. The interior is fine and the engine seems to be fine. The insurance company says it repairable for around $14,000, where, as they currently rate the car price to be at $18,000, they would like to pay for the repairs. To me, that seems odd considering that they'll still have to pay for our rental till the car gets repaired, which could be another 2 weeks. My prime concern is - would be safer to ask them to write off the car on the grounds of safety? With such phenomenal damages, should we agree to get it repaired? If we write off the car, we will suffer a loss of around $3k right away as the outstanding loan amount on it is $21,000 and we had a deductible of $1,000 with the insurance co. Also, if we have to buy a new car, we will lose the money paid on freight and taxes as well as the loan amount + interest we have paid so far. It was a 2004 Honda Accord EXL. Please advice what we should do - should we go ahead with the repairs or should we insist on writing it off?

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Insurers do a sum. On one side, the cost of simply paying the policyholder a write-off value from which they deduct the likely return on the salvage. In your case $18,000 to you minus maybe $3,000 for the salvage would cost them $15,000. Fixing the car will cost them $14,000 + the car rental, so I'd guess that someone, somewhere, has an interest in having your car fixed. Maybe a kick-back from the car rental company. This is a big problem in the UK where the insurer of the driver of the car that caused the crash was hit with a bill of $43,500 for 3 months rental of a C Class Mercedes while the damaged C Class was repaired. Use this information to negotiate
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