Leasing a car can be a rewarding experience for the right customer. It won’t be for everyone. For the majority of interested leasers, though, leasing a car can be one of the smartest financial and safety decisions of their lives. Why? Because not only are monthly payments lower when you lease, but you are able to get a much newer, better, and often safer car than you would get if you just went out and bought one.

Buying a car is often seen as the American dream but it quickly turns into a nightmare when customers rush in and buy the wrong car. Before buying, ask yourself if these benefits of leasing should tilt the tide toward a car lease.

Questions to consider

1. Can I afford the monthly payments on a car I buy? Monthly payments on a purchased car will be much higher than a leased car. If you can’t afford monthly payments to purchase a good, solid car that you’re truly happy with, then leasing should be the first thing on your mind.

2. Can I afford repairs on a car I buy? Car repairs for cars you buy will inevitably be higher than the repairs on a leased car. This is because leased cars tend to be under warranty, meaning that repairs are free or near free. When something goes wrong on a leased car, it gets fixed right away. This can save you days of missed work and tons of cash.

3. Can you afford the taxes on a new car? When taxes are assessed on a new car, it’s higher than those assessed for a leased car. Consider this before buying and look to lease instead if you can’t handle taxes on a purchased car.

4. Do you want a better car than you can afford to buy? Leasing is the way to go! When you lease a car, monthly payments are much lower than a new or used car, so you’re going to be able to really get something you love. There are those people out there who just settle for any car they can afford which is a shame. Leasing can put you behind the wheel of a much better, safer car.

5. Do you drive a low number of miles per year? Leasers should always be aware of the set mileage agreement on their lease. Keep in mind that you won’t own the car after the lease is up, so dealerships need to maintain the car in good condition and under a certain number of miles during the time you’re leasing it. This is definitely a fair agreement because you benefit from driving a very nice car for a low amount of money. If you drive more than 15,000 miles a year, you might want to discuss this with the dealership you want to lease from. They can tell you if there’s any way to comfortably afford higher miles. If it’s way over 15,000 miles a year though, leasing might not be as profitable for you as it is for others.

Discussing the lease

Before agreeing to any type of lease, the thing to remember is, “Ask!” If you don’t know something, ask. If you’re not familiar with some of the terms of the lease agreement, clarify it. Dealerships should be willing to invest all the time you need in order to explain the terms of your lease. You need to know exactly what your monthly payments are, exactly how many miles you can drive the car per month or year, and exactly what kind of clean-up fee you’ll be paying at the end of your lease. This is often called a disposition fee and it covers all of the wear and tear you might place on the car during your lease.

Another thing to discuss with the dealership is the GAP coverage included with the lease. This kind of coverage is extremely helpful in the event a leased car is totaled. If your car insurance doesn’t cover the entirety of the lease, GAP coverage is there to pay the remainder. No one ever wants to total any kind of car, but totaling a leased car can be especially costly, so GAP coverage is there to take care of the damages depending on the cause of the accident and who’s fault it was.

Leasing is one of the single best ways to acquire the car of your dreams, even if it is for a limited amount of time. You can get a lot of good experiences out of a car over the course of a 1, 2, 3, or more year lease, but you can’t take advantage of leasing if you don’t get in contact with a great dealership today. Get on the right road to leasing a great car. You won’t regret it.

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