Ive own a few cars over the years, attended many car shows and won 2 awards, 1st and 2nd for 2 different vehicles. I learned alot of what is looked for at shows, but also been burned by insurance adjusters from an evaluation after an accident.
Ive had non fault accidents meaning the other guy was at fault. Regardless it shows up on your license of driving record, it also affects your insurance rates even if they pay to fix your car and it shows up on your cars carfax causing a lower resale value. I never can get a direct answer is Virginians are subject for diminished resale value.
Once you have an accident someone looks over your car to value it in its current condition after the accident and what was damaged in that accident. That is weighted against what the car is worth also in its shape without the accident damage. That in it self can be difficult to get. I had a water pump that leaks half a gallon of water a minute after a "minor" front passenger crash. They said it was existing damage and the guys insurance company said I had to my insurance and it was a 500 deductible to get the water pump replaced. The shop and I argued I commute 83 miles and was 90% on my way to work and could not of driven a car with a gallon capacity cooling system with such a leak. After asking for a supervisor it was also covered under the guys insurance.
The guy who evaluates your car is likely retired twice from previous jobs and in his 80s and looks down on HID lamps, led lamps, euro lamps, carbon fiber, loud paint colors, wings of any type, fancy radios or matching speakers. All of these are deductions on a cars value according to him so that further puts you behind in the value of your car. Basically once they estimate the value of your car before the accident and then the accident damage is what they use to either fix or total your car.
Sometimes if the value is close you can opt to not replace the condenser or to do some yourself so the insurance will cover everything else. If its too upside down you can opt to have the car totaled and buy it from the insurance company and fix it yourself between what they give you and you pay to buy it assuming you have full coverage and own the car vs the bank owning it.
Anyhoo, my car was always a work in process and it was pretty common for the back seat to be removed for work on sub, amp, wiring, etc. Sometimes the front passenger seat would be removed or moved to the rear. Other times interior panels are removed again for wiring. Since my last car was a honda hybrid the rear hybrid compartment where the hybrid battery and guts lived was apart for testing, monitoring, etc. I was a beta tester for a lithium extender pack that took up the whole trunk area too.
Well, the adjuster doesnt nickle and dime you for panels, left rear seat back, hybrid battery cover, etc. He uses a sharpie thats got a 3 inch wide tip and sayd you need a new hybrid IPU at 3 grand. You need a new rear seat at 2 grand. You need a new interior at 4 grand, etc. Same with tinting your lamps, putting hids in them, etc. He just says you need new oem lamps at 500 bucks a fixture. Then if its replaced you got to retint them.
One shop my car was taken to I gave them a list of what I wanted which basically returned the car to stock including an alignment. They responded by saying we decided not to service your car.
So, while Im working on creature comfort items like heated seats and such the car stays parked til I am done and everything is as stock looking as possible while I retain purchase records of items. Sure Id love to lower it, sticker or wrap it, tint the lamps, etc, but the car was $8200 on paper purchased new and its value just drops from there.