The schwacke list

Professional and stylish: car valuation with the schwacke list. If you want to sell your car or claim the correct damages after an accident, you need to accurately determine the value of the vehicle. The schwacke list, which is used by all reputable insurance companies and car buyers, is a great help here. Even as a private person, you can get an insight into the real vehicle value and carry out the car valuation in just a few steps with schwacke.

Content of this article

What is in the schwacke list and where does it come from?

The name is given to the inventor of the schwacke list – hanns W. Schwacke. In 1957, he published the basis of today’s list, which provided information about car values and thus fair used car prices. The original schwacke list was only the cornerstone, which was built upon and further developed in all subsequent years. Today, the list serves not only to determine the value when buying or selling used vehicles. Even experienced experts and insurance companies value vehicles on the basis of the schwacke list, as this is considered to be the most reliable and safest vehicle valuation basis. Originally, there was a table in which the year of manufacture and the vehicle type, the equipment and the mileage as well as an assessment of the condition were entered and finally evaluated. Today, the schwacke list is considerably more complex and contains a whole host of other information that can be entered and valued. In addition to the pure car valuation, the schwacke list can be used for jeeps and vans, for motorcycles and boats as well as car trailers and more. In addition to vehicle-specific data and special equipment features, the list is also based on compensation for loss of use and prices for rental cars when it comes to the correct valuation after a car accident.

Schwackel list: from the table to software-based valuation

The fact that the schwacke list is now used online and controlled by software is not a phenomenon of advanced digitalization. For more than 20 years, the valuation of vehicles has been carried out online and on the basis of an incorruptible software programmed according to algorithms. as a private person you can not use the tables for free which can be seen by experts and commercial dealers. Nevertheless, it is possible to determine one’s own vehicle value using the schwacke list and to have the valuation carried out for a fee. If you want to save the expense of a car valuation and still not lose out on the sale, you can look at the relevant car portals and use the price comparisons to obtain a trend for your own vehicle value. When it comes to car valuation after an accident, you as the policyholder and injured party do not have to worry about the valuation with schwacke on your own. Before the insurance company determines the amount of compensation and the value of the vehicle with regard to the classification of the damage, the schwacke list is consulted. Even a car expert uses the schwacke list, so that it is not of high relevance that you as a private person cannot have a free look at the best known and safest index in the value determination.

Tips for the valuation after car accidents

In the case of property damage following an accident, the aim is to determine the amount of the damage. Only with this knowledge is it possible for an expert to classify the vehicle as a total loss, economic total loss or repairable accidental damage. After a car accident, contacting the insurance company is indispensable. If you don’t want to rely solely on the valuation of the opposing insurance company, but want to ensure an adequate valuation yourself, you should hire a motor vehicle expert. Since this software determines the value of the damaged vehicle on the basis of the schwacke list, it is not necessary to look at the table yourself. All costs for the repair of the vehicle, but also for the inspection of the list and the commissioning of the expert are borne not by the injured party but by the other party to the accident. For this reason alone, it is advisable not to do without an expert and to always have the valuation carried out professionally. The competent vehicle evaluation is carried out on the basis of various points. On the one hand, the focus is on the repair costs. If the valuation results in a total loss, the current value and thus the sum of the replacement of an equivalent vehicle is determined. If a repair is possible and relevant in terms of costs, the loss of use and the cost factor for the temporary rental of a loaner car are also calculated. In all these points, the schwacke list applies and is the basis for the costs incurred by the party responsible for the accident for the damage to the vehicle and its consequential costs.

Important: the opposing insurance company will usually insist on payment for a lower vehicle value. You can prevent this by commissioning an appraisal yourself and entrusting an expert with the valuation according to the schwacke list. It is worth knowing that the car value according to schwacke was not developed for the benefit of the insurance companies, but rather to calculate the actual value in line with market conditions.

Information on vehicle valuation when selling/buying a used car

You would like to sell your used car and are considering what current value is relevant in the sale of? It is a fact that a vehicle advertised at too high a price is difficult to find a new owner. If, on the other hand, you set the value too low, you will lose money and achieve no added value with the sale of the car. As a buyer, you also have the opportunity to find out about the vehicle price and its proximity to the market via the schwacke list. Although the data is not available free of charge, it is nevertheless a good guide to the pricing of a sale or your highest bid when buying a vehicle. Alternatively, used car portals offer a reliable insight into the current values of individual vehicle types and brands through their indexes. Here, too, the focus is on the basic data that you will find in the schwacke list. This means that with your focus on the average price of your favorite vehicle, you will receive a very comprehensive knowledge of the real market value and information on overpriced cars or real bargains. With the development of the schwacke list, the valuation of motor vehicles has become more professional and it is impossible for fantasy prices to be determined after accidents or when buying and selling vehicles.

As soon as you hire an appraiser or receive a vehicle appraisal from an insurance company, the schwacke list is used as a basis. In the case of car accidents with cost-intensive damage, you should nevertheless consider whether an own appraiser is not the better solution for you and excludes that you receive the minimum price for the damage you incurred. The schwacke list calculates the exact value that you are entitled to and must pay for the damaged vehicle on the basis of the precise information provided.

How the vehicle value is determined in the schwacke list?

Anyone who has a vehicle appraisal carried out wonders how "schwacke" knows the correct value and whether their vehicle is included in the list with all the equipment features. Around 700 employees keep the data up to date and add new vehicles to the list. Due to the continuous updating of the database, the schwacke-list is a reliable basis for used car valuations. The list contains around 30.000 cars from different manufacturers. Not only the most popular models, but also many rare models with special equipment are listed in the database and can be called up for valuation purposes. But why is the schwacke valuation considered particularly reputable, while other car valuation lists are less trusted?? This is certainly not least due to the fact that schwacke is a pioneer and that the list has been around since 1957. The calculation of the average value is based on more than 700.000 small ads, statistical data and regional differences in market value. The value determined for the vehicle is therefore also related to the location from which the vehicle valuation is commissioned. Before using the paid list, car owners should be aware that the value given refers to an average value and that this does not necessarily correspond to the real value. One advantage over other vehicle valuation lists is based on the enormous number of vehicle models in the database. However, the schwacke list is not a guarantee for correct valuation after an accident or when selling a used car.

For which vehicles is the schwacke valuation unsuitable??

Since the residual value calculation is based on analytical and statistical results, it works best for cars that are driven frequently. The equipment also influences the suitability of the list, although numerous optional extras are available in the table. The list valuation is not at all suitable for youngtimers and oldtimers as well as for modified vehicles, the tuning of which significantly increases the market value. The market for classic cars follows its own rules and even rare models lack the reference comparison to make a realistic valuation online. The appraisal by the automotive expert is carried out by means of an inspection of the vehicle and includes all equipment features as well as the actual condition of the vehicle in the value determination. In order to exclude monetary losses after accidents and not to limit the cost absorption of the opposing insurance to the average value, a personal appraisal by an independent expert should be carried out in this case. The recommendation applies not only to cars, but also to motor homes and motorcycles, rare mopeds and cult vehicles of the American market. Here, the schwacke list clearly has too little basis for analysis.

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*the costs of an expert opinion which you have drawn up after a motor vehicle accident for which you were not at fault in order to establish the damage, the vehicle’s current value and the probable repair costs must be borne by the insurance company of the party responsible for the accident (§ 249 BGB).

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