How to Lease a Car
- Part 1 of 5: Decide on the type of vehicle you want
- Part 2 of 5: Determine your budget for monthly payments and extras
- Part 3 of 5: Shop around for the best deal
- Part 4 of 5: Get insurance coverage
- Part 5 of 5: Sign all of the documents and get on the road
If the time isn’t right to buy a car, or you can’t afford a new model, then leasing might be a good option for you. Leasing a car allows you to drive a newer vehicle without the same large financial commitment as buying. Leasing a car isn’t for everyone, so it’s important to consider your individual needs before deciding to lease.
Leasing is essentially renting, and you have a variety of options for how long your lease lasts and what is included. It’s important to note that leasing a car doesn’t result in owning a car, and over time the cost of leasing could be more than purchasing a car.
Once you’ve decided that leasing is right for you, the process is relatively straightforward. In this article, Part 1 advises thinking carefully about the type of vehicle you want, Part 2 recommends figuring out how much you can afford, Part 3 suggests shopping around, Part 4 encourages you to get insurance, and Part 5 talks about signing paperwork.
Part 1 of 5: Decide on the type of vehicle you want
The exciting thing about leasing is that more cars are available to you that might have been out of your budget if you were buying. In leasing a car, you can experience some of the newer models that you probably wouldn’t buy.
Be realistic about the car you choose to make sure that it fits your needs and will continue to work for you for the duration of your lease agreement. A two-door coupe might be fun at first, but not practical when others are going to be riding with you.
Part 2 of 5: Determine your budget for monthly payments and extras
Some things to consider:
- Does your lease require a down payment?
- How much are you willing to spend per month?
- Does the lease agreement include repairs?
- What is the mileage limit?
- Note: The majority of lease agreements have a yearly mileage allowance, and companies will charge you for exceeding the limit. Most limits are set under 15,000 miles annually, so make sure that works for you.
Part 3 of 5: Shop around for the best deal
Car companies offer special deals and promotions from time to time, so there are plenty of opportunities to get a discount on a new lease. Call car companies directly and request a lease quote that includes the down payment, extra fees, monthly charges, and sales tax. Get the full quote from each company so that you can compare your choices effectively.
It is possible to negotiate, so don’t be afraid to ask for a better deal. The representative might be able to help you cut some costs or offer alternatives in the car category you are interested in.
Part 4 of 5: Get insurance coverage
Car insurance for leasing a car is often more expensive than insuring a car that you own. Lease agreements over require more coverage and extras, so be sure to factor that into your budget and work with your insurance company to find the deal that is best for you.
Part 5 of 5: Sign all of the documents and get on the road
Once you have a complete understanding of your lease agreement, all that is left is to sign and drive away. You should have a complete breakdown of the charges and fees so that the paperwork you sign matches the deal you agreed upon.
Leasing isn’t without restrictions. When you lease a car there are often mileage restrictions and you have to keep the car clean and damage-free. Be sure to research all of the requirements before you commit.