Thinking about driving your leased car for Uber to make some extra money, or as a full-time job? Your lease contract may or may not allow this, but it probably isn’t a good idea regardless of whether you can do it.
All you need to do to find out if you can drive your leased car for Uber is take a look at the contract you signed. Some least contracts will stipulate that you can’t use the leased car to transport people or goods on a for-hire basis. This is often under the vehicle use section of the contract. If your lease contract doesn’t have any language pertaining to using the car to transport people, then you can use the car to drive with Uber.
Here’s the problem with driving your leased car with Uber – when you drive for Uber, you need to drive often if you want to make money, which means you’re going to put quite a few miles on your odometer. Every lease contract has an annual mileage allowance, and if you go over that mileage allowance, you’ll need to pay overage fees. The dealer charges these on a per-mile basis. A standard lease contract will have an annual mileage allowance of 12,000 miles, along with overage charges between 15 and 30 cents per mile.
As an Uber driver, you could end up driving 200 miles in a single day. If you average that many miles per day and work five days a week, you would drive 1,000 miles per week, 4,000 miles per month, and 48,000 to 50,000 miles per year. And driving a large number of miles is essentially the only way to make money on the Uber platform. The bulk of your pay is Uber’s per-mile charge, as the amount you make for your time is minimal. Even the per-mile charge isn’t very high in most areas, often earning you about $1 per mile.
While you can make a good gross income driving for Uber, your net income will be much lower when you factor in the cost of gas, maintenance on the car, and taxes. Most Uber drivers don’t make much money to begin with. Add in the fact that you’ll also be paying 15 to 30 cents per mile on overage fees, and you could end up making less than minimum wage.
Even if your lease contract allows you to drive for Uber, it’s not smart to do it on a regular basis. A few hundred miles of driving per month to make a few extra bucks is one thing, but be very careful about how many miles you put on the car. If you want to drive for Uber full-time, it’s better to buy a car or go with a service that lets you use one of their cars on Uber for a fee. At least this way, you aren’t putting the miles on your own car.
You can also buy out your leased car if you want to start driving on Uber right away. Most lease contracts allow you to perform an early buyout or a buyout at the end of the lease term. You’ll need to decide if the cost of buying out your lease is worth it to drive for Uber. Estimate how much you could make per month if you drove for Uber and see how that compares to the amount you’d spend on financing the buyout of your leased car. Uber also has a leasing program available if you’re currently in the market for a car lease.