Preferred Body Shop Program: What You Need to Know Before Choosing
At Nylund’s Collision Center, as an independent, non-DRP auto body shop, we are dedicated to ensuring our customers receive the highest quality repairs using only OEM parts and adhering to OEM procedures. With our commitment to customer satisfaction, we believe it’s essential to educate consumers about the pros and cons of Insurance Company’s Preferred Body Shop Programs or DRPs (Direct Repair Programs). This article will delve into the advantages and disadvantages of body shops participating in these programs and provide valuable guidance for customers seeking repairs for their vehicles.
Is Nylund’s a DRP Shop?
The answer is no. And here is why… We deal with all insurance companies. The difference between being on their list of preferred shops (this is called DRP – Direct Repair Program) or not is simple. It’s about relationships. We prefer to have the relationship with our guest, not the insurance company.
The rules quickly shift to saving the Insurance Company money when the relationship is centered around them. While every insurance company is different, often times a preferred auto body shop must first search for used parts, aftermarket parts (non-original), and reconditioned parts before being allowed to put factory (OEM) parts back on your car. The insurers try to do the same to us. The difference is that we can engage them with reasons to do the repair correctly without jeopardizing the relationship. You are the one we want to please, not the insurance company.
Both the insurance company and Nylund’s have a responsibility when your car gets damaged. Ours is to put your car back to the way it was before the accident. The Insurance Company’s is to fund the process.
In many cases the Insurance Company, in our opinion, crosses the line and tries to dictate HOW the car is going to be repaired as well. That is our job, not theirs. But this is what often times happens when a car is taken to one of the DRP preferred body shops.
An example of this would be an insurance company insisting on repairing a panel that we feel should be replaced. We will always demand the car get the best (proper) repair for our guests. This is something that is difficult for a preferred body shop because it could put their relationship in jeopardy with the referring insurance company.
Pros of Joining a Preferred Body Shop Program:
- Increased Business Referrals: Being part of an insurance company’s preferred network can result in increased referrals from policyholders, potentially boosting the shop’s revenue.
Cons of Joining a Preferred Body Shop Program:
- Conflicts of Interest: Auto body shops participating in a preferred program may face pressure to perform repairs that do not prioritize the customer’s best interests in order to maintain their relationship with the insurance company.
- Limited Repair Options: Preferred body shop programs might mandate the use of aftermarket or reconditioned parts on their estimates, which could be of inferior quality compared to OEM parts.
- Loss of Control: By participating in a preferred body shop program, auto body shops may relinquish control over the repair process, as they must adhere to specific program requirements and guidelines.
What does it mean for customers?
When an auto body shop participates in a preferred body shop program, customers may find their repair options limited and the shop potentially more focused on meeting the insurance company’s demands rather than prioritizing the customer’s needs. It is crucial for customers to conduct their research and select an auto body shop that emphasizes their requirements and boasts a solid reputation for delivering high-quality repairs.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Q: Can I choose any auto body shop for my repairs, even if they are not part of my Insurance Company’s preferred body shop program?
A: Yes, you have the right to select any auto body shop for your repairs, irrespective of whether they are part of your Insurance Company’s preferred body shop program.
Q: Will my repairs take longer if I choose a non-preferred body shop?
A: Not necessarily. Although preferred body shop programs might offer streamlined repair processes, non-preferred body shops can still deliver quality repairs in a timely manner.
Q: Can I request OEM parts for my repairs?
A: Yes, you have the right to request OEM parts for your repairs. However, some Insurance Companies may require you to pay the difference in cost between OEM parts and aftermarket or reconditioned parts.
While Insurance Company’s preferred body shop programs may offer benefits such as increased referrals and streamlined repair processes, these advantages should be weighed against potential conflicts of interest and limitations in repair options. The most crucial factor in choosing an auto body shop is their reputation for delivering high-quality repairs and excellent customer service. By conducting thorough research, customers can find an auto body shop that prioritizes their needs and has a proven track record for exceptional repair work.
In summary, although participating in a preferred body shop program may have its benefits, auto body shops should prioritize their relationship with customers and focus on providing the best possible repairs. For customers, it is vital to choose an auto body shop that puts their needs first and has a strong reputation for quality repairs. By doing so, customers can ensure that their vehicle is repaired to the highest standards, with their best interests always in mind.
At Nylund’s Collision Center, our dedication to customer satisfaction, adherence to OEM parts and procedures, and our commitment to transparent communication ensure that our customers receive top-quality repairs that prioritize their needs above all else. As an independent, non-DRP body shop, we believe in the importance of educating consumers about the potential drawbacks of Insurance Company’s Preferred Body Shop Programs, empowering them to make informed decisions when selecting an auto body shop for their vehicle repairs.
Questions? Feel free to call or contact us any time. We are always happy to educate our guests as we strive to serve them with integrity.