Something I said on the Car Pro Show recently spurred a lot of questions about putting money down on leases. I soon realized this was an area of confusion for many people.
If you do a conventional purchase of an automobile, I recommend putting as much of a down payment or trade equity as you can. This lowers the monthly payment and cuts down on interest charges. However, the scenario is very different with a lease.
We had a listener call the show who was skittish about leasing, she had never done it before. We get this call at least weekly. Here are some things to think about when considering whether to buy or lease your next vehicle.
1. Consider How Much You Drive When I get the question of lease versus buy, my first question back is always how many miles per year do you drive? Some people, especially third party leasing companies, will disagree with me on this; however, I maintain that if you drive Read More
We had a caller last weekend who was confused about residual values on a lease, and whether that amount could be negotiated at the beginning or end of the lease. One of the problems with the car business is that it has its own language, and often people in the car business use their internal terms when talking to consumers. Most people today know that “upside down” means they owe more on their car than its value, but not too many years ago, it was a bit of a mystery term. Car leasing has a Read More
Pull-Ahead Lease Programs Over the last few years, these programs have become very popular with automakers, and are just another form of an incentive. It can vary, but generally if you are currently in a lease, the “pull-ahead” will allow you to skip up to your last three payments if you lease another vehicle of the same brand. This is particularly good for people who are on track to go over their mileage allowance. Essentially, you are moving your lease end date up by 90 days.
When I started my radio show 17 years ago, on show #1, I told the audience I would only recommend vehicles that had great long-term reliability, good value for the dollar, and good resale value. I have stuck to those tenets all these years. Before going on the air the first time, I listened to a number of other automotive shows, and was amazed that not one of them ever mentioned resale value. I have had people tell me they were not worried about resale value because they leased their cars. Read More
Weekly on the Car Pro Show, we have a number of callers who identify themselves as senior citizens who are considering leasing for the first time.
I explain on the air that as we age, our mobility becomes more and more important and, frankly, precious. For many seniors, they have never given much thought to leasing a vehicle; many grew up in a time that this just wasn’t done. However, it should be considered, along with the purchase option. It is wise to look at both in-depth to make the Read More
On the Car Pro Show, we always get a lot of calls about what to do at the end of a car lease. To help you figure out what’s best for you, I recently put together some easy to understand tips on what to do at the end of a lease. Start Your Research About 90 Days Before Your Lease Is Up As you approach the end of a lease, at about 90 days from the end, that is the time to get your lease contract out and look it over. Odds are you haven’t looked at it in a long time. Look for the residual Read More
I had a caller to my radio show Saturday, wanting to purchase a car for his 21-year old son who was in college. I asked him if he had considered leasing a new car for him, to which he said no and seemed very leery of leasing overall, primarily because he had never done it. He made the comment “after 3-years, you don’t own anything”. He is correct, but if you finance for five, six, or seven years, you don’t own anything after three years either. After a few minutes of chatting, he is going Read More