Leasing vs Buying a Vehicle
Leasing vs Buying a Vehicle
Posted on August 27, 2015
Are you leasing or buying your dream vehicle? There are advantages to doing it either way.
In a comparison of both options, how do the differences between leasing vs buying a vehicle stack up? From a convenience point of view, having the opportunity to be entirely obligation-free after a short lease term is hugely appealing. Who doesn't want to drive a brand new vehicle every three years or so? Well, when you perpetually lease vehicles, this is entirely within your reach. If you are breezing into town for a three or four-year work stint or educational endeavour, there's no better way to have wheels than through leasing. You will have no worries about what do with the car later, and no vehicle-related debt hanging over your head! You just hand back the keys, pay the relatively small payment, and wash your hands of the whole thing.
But it is impossible not to see that in terms of financial value, it is more economical to buy a vehicle outright rather than lease it. This is because of the financial logistics inherent in both processes. When leasing an SUV you are effectively monopolizing the full amount that a financing institution would have lent the dealership, just as if you had purchased the same SUV. You would pay monthly interest in either case, too. Where it would be different is that the interest rates for leases are much higher than for car loans, because the speed at which you are paying back the vehicle cost is much slower. The payment amounts for leases are usually much less, and this is the trade-off. Plus, if you lease you don't own the SUV at the end, and if you buy it you do.
Let's take a look at an actual comparison of leasing vs buying a vehicle, examining a few different elements involving cost, convenience, and value.
Looking at lease vs finance of a car, the payments for a lease are usually considerably lower than payments for the financing of a car.
Value of Ownership
If you lease, you have to return the car at the end of your lease, but if you finance a car then you will own it at the end of the loan term.
Convenience of Mileage Allowed
If you lease a vehicle you are usually restricted to a mileage limit of up to 24,000 kilometres annual, but if you buy your own vehicle then you can drive it as much and as far as you like.
Future Equity or Value
If you lease, the future financial value of the vehicle doesn't affect you at all. You just would not have any equity in it. If you purchase a vehicle through financing, you own it although you have to take its depreciation into account.
Return of the Vehicle
With leasing, you can literally walk away when your lease ends, after paying the required costs stipulated in your leasing agreement (link to earlier lease post). But when you buy your own vehicle you have to sell it or trade it in.
When you lease, the incurred charged to terminate the contract can cost you almost as much as paying the rest of your lease would! But of course, at any point when you own your own vehicle, you can sell or trade it. This is where leasing can become less than comfortable, so be sure you can commit to the full term of the lease if this is the way you decide to go.