When your vehicle has been in an accident and suffered damage, its fair market value may decrease. This decrease in the value of your vehicle is the inherent diminished value. It exists no matter the quality of repairs done to the vehicle, because restoring the vehicle back to its look and function does not bring it back to pre-accident condition.
Let’s pretend your vehicle is for sale on a lot. For the sake of this example, an identical vehicle, same year, color, mileage, etc, sits next to your vehicle. A customer is interested in purchasing one of them, but the salesman tells them that while it received proper repairs, your vehicle has been in a wreck before. Chances are the customer will choose the vehicle that has not suffered any damage, or they may try to get your vehicle for a lower price. Thus its prior damage has lowered the value of the vehicle.
You can speak to the managers at your local body shops about getting reimbursed from the insurance company for the inherent diminished value of your vehicle. Or for more on diminished value, we recommend you check out this link: http://www.vehicleinfo.com/diminished_value. You can visit sites like nada.com and autotrader.com to determine the value of your vehicle.