If you’ve had auto body work done at different shops, then you’ve probably noticed there’s a discrepancy in estimates. In some cases, maybe even a discrepancy in the quality of repair. While every auto body shop will have different processes that may cost less or more for the customer, a lot of the estimate difference occurs because of a few key reasons:

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When finding an auto body shop, make sure they have the right qualifications such as being certified through I-CAR. Investing in auto body technicians means keeping them up-to-date on changes in the industry and continuing their education as vehicles continue to advance. Due to that, labor costs can go up, but it also means you’re getting expert work done that you can trust. Another part of the quality cost is the parts that the shop uses.

Time.

The overall cost of labor will also include the time spent on repairing your car. If the repair is complicated or time-consuming, then it’s expected that the price will go up as the technicians work more hours on it. If you have concerns, ask them about the process and the average time it takes for that type of fix. They’ll typically use that average for the estimate cost.

Location.

As with any store, location will affect the cost of products or services. An auto body shop near you will always be more convenient, but it can affect the cost if you live in a more expensive area. Shops in places like the suburbs or a smaller town will have less operation costs, so they will have a lower overall estimate.

Popularity.

Shops that have gained a great deal of fame can charge more for their services due to demand. While there’s usually a reason for that popularity, that doesn’t always mean they’re the best choice for your needs. Luckily, there’s many ways to find a trusted auto body shop. Ask your friends, coworkers, and neighbors where they go and why they use them. You can also Google local options and look through their online reviews. Make a list and call the shop for estimates to compare—remember, going with the cheapest option is not always best in the long-run. Take all of these options into consideration; is an estimate cheaper because of something like a less expensive location? Or is it a more worrying reason like not using high-quality products?

If you’re in the Eastern Twin Cities area, give Crossroads Collision a call to learn more about our services and request an estimate. We can handle anything from small scratches to big crashes, and we are a certified shop with expert technicians on staff. We’d love to be your local, trusted auto body shop.