Skip to content
Subscriber Only

Harvey-Hit Drivers Buoy U.S. Car Buying as Insurers Cut Checks

  • Replacing damaged autos may drive one of 2017’s best months
  • Houston market surges while Florida, Puerto Rico remain weak
Video player cover image

Who Pays The Bill When Mother Nature Strikes?

Updated on

As Hurricane Harvey poured on Houston, Frank Rodriguez feared for his 2014 GMC Sierra. Once he saw the pickup’s soaking-wet interior and center console full of water, he knew it was a lost cause. He just hoped his insurance company would agree and cut him a check.

Despite a dearth of inspectors in southern Texas to review the damage in person, those funds came through. The insurer took Rodriguez’s word the truck was totaled and approved his claim over the phone, he said, and about three weeks later, his truck’s lien was paid off, he had a check in hand and he was one of thousands in the region back in the market for a new vehicle.