If you are looking to buy a new or used car on finance, then chances are you will have seen car leasing as an option. But what is car leasing and how do I know if it is the right option for me?
It used to be that car leasing was an option traditionally used as a business finance method. But today’s consumers are taking advantage of car leasing thanks to the range of benefits it provides.
Car leasing is a type of finance package where you effectively hire the car over a set amount of time. This means that you do not own the vehicle, and what you are paying is for the monthly rental of the car. At the end of the agreement, you often have two options: return the car to the finance provider, or pay a fee to purchase the car.
There are pros and cons of car leasing that mean it may or may not be the right option for you to finance your car buying.
The monthly payments in car leasing are generally lower than in a traditional finance package. This is because you normally only pay for the depreciation in a car’s value. Depreciation is the amount of value a car loses from the time it is leased towards the end of the agreement.
Car leasing is also an attractive option for those who want newer or more prestigious cars. Financing a brand new top-of-the-range car can be more expensive than leasing, as you are spreading the car’s entire value over the term length, rather than the depreciation.
A car leasing deal also gives you more flexibility at the end of the agreement. Want to buy the car? Then you can pay the fee and gain ownership. Want to hand it back? Then as long as the mileage and condition is correct (see below), you will be able to do so. You can then lease a new car, taking advantage of a newer or better model.
As you are renting the car, you will need to follow certain conditions in terms of usage. Many car leasing deals will have an annual mileage limit. At the start of the car leasing deal, the value of the car will be calculated based on the total mileage the car is expected to have at the end of the leasing deal. If you go over this, you can be facing a penalty payment for every mile you exceed the limit.
There may also be requirements on the car’s condition. It’s normal for a car to have some wear and tear over the years. In a car leasing deal, you may have to keep a car in a certain state, both inside and outside the vehicle. You may have to pay for extra protection or a warranty to ensure the car’s condition is as it should be.
Another disadvantage may be that you do not own the car at the end of the agreement. This means you may be investing a lot of money in something you don’t own.
Confused by car leasing terms?
It’s easy to get confused by some of the terms used in car leasing, especially if you are unfamiliar with finance. Check out the Creditplus car finance glossary for short, simple explainers of all the terms you may not understand.
Whether car leasing is the right option for you depends on a number of different factors. Before you enter any finance deal, you should look at what you want to use the car for, and what you want to do with the car at the end of the agreement.
If you have a steady job and have a good idea of how much you use the car each year, then leasing can be an excellent and affordable option, especially if the idea of driving a nice car at a lower monthly cost appeals to you.
But if you are in a state of uncertainty over what you will use the car for, then it may not be the right option. The same can be said if you want to invest your money into something that you will own at the end of the agreement.
Have you considered Personal Contract Purchase as an option? It combines the best elements of car finance and car leasing into a single product. Find out more at our Personal Contract Purchase explained page. If you are still not sure what the right option for you is, try our car finance options tool to get an idea of the option that might suit you best.
Want to see what car leasing deals will be available for you? At Creditplus, we compare leasing options from a wide panel of providers to find you the best possible deal. Whether you have a spotless credit rating or not, we can help find the perfect car leasing package, tailored to fit your needs.
All you need to do is to complete our quick and easy, no-obligation online application form, and one of our customer advisors will soon be in touch to discuss your car leasing options. Then, it’s simply a matter of looking at the deals available to you, and deciding what car you want.
Not found the car you want to lease? Then why not use our complete car buying service to find, fund and then deliver your new car direct to your doorstep. Searching thousands of cars across our dealer network, we’ll find the perfect vehicle for you. We’ll then find the perfect leasing package to go with your car, before giving it an RAC approved vehicle check.
So what are you waiting for? Apply online today and you’ll be on the road to your new car.