Whether you’re an experienced driver or you’ve only recently passed your test, if you’re giving some thought to leasing a car, you’re joining many others who have decided to lease as a stress-free and cost-effective way of driving away in a new vehicle.
If car leasing is a new subject to you, you may have a number of questions regarding how it works and how you can get a good deal. Here, we’re giving you a few tips to get you started on the road.
Insure Your Lease Car
You’ll need to arrange a policy for the car, although you’ll find that some providers offer deals that include insurance with your monthly rental cost. These are sometimes referred to as ‘complete care’ or ‘total care’, which means you don’t need to pay for fuel and any replacements/repairs caused by driver error.
Maintain Your Lease Car
In addition to sorting out insurance, you should stay on top of things when it comes to maintenance. The British Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association (BVRLA), responsible for leasing and regulating providers and companies, have set out a number of guidelines that tell drivers what can be regarded as an acceptable condition for the car.
You’ll also find details in the contract between you and your provider of what they regard as an appropriate standard for their cars. Checking the vehicle every few weeks with these standards in mind will ensure you aren’t leaving potential problems to get worse.
The majority of leasing deals will provide you with an option for a maintenance package that will involve an additional monthly cost, covering you for most repairs. This is strictly for damage caused by something other than driver error and doesn’t cover damaged or lost items.
Go With an Approved Provider
Leasing a car is no small commitment. You’re basically responsible for a brand-new car for a couple of years or more. So it would be better to know that you’re dealing with an FCA and BVRLA approved leasing company.
Get GAP Insurance
It isn’t mandatory to get Guaranteed Asset Protection (GAP) insurance. However, it’s worth taking out this optional cover to settle any finance you may owe on the vehicle if it’s ever written off or stolen.
Your primary insurance policy will pay out at the market value of the vehicle at the time it was written off or stolen. However, the question of what’s still owed for the remainder of the contract remains.
Be Honest With Your Annual Mileage
Deciding on the number of miles to put on the clock is important in leasing. It affects your monthly payout cost and is taken into account during your vehicle inspection once your lease agreement has come to an end.
Being honest about your annual mileage means you can avoid additional costs from the finance provider for exceeding the limit set out in your contract.
Each provider has its own per mile rate, which is anywhere from 3p to 30p.
While it’s difficult to work out the exact number of miles you’re likely to clock in a year, there’s a basic formula that you can use.
Simply pick a week typical of your driving habits, and then multiply that week’s miles by 52 for the year’s total. Then factor in an additional five per cent for any unplanned journeys.
Think With Budget in Mind
Having an amount in mind that you can afford to invest in leasing a car will help you in deciding on which type of car to lease. It will also ultimately result in less stress with regards to monthly payments. While you may be thinking that higher-end cars are out of your budget range, some manufacturers offer deals like the Lincoln lease specials that make nicer cars attainable to people with tighter budgets.
There’s more to this than merely the rental cost, however. You should also take budgeting into account. You need to consider the fuel costs, insurance, and, of course, the initial payment price.
Put Some Gas in the Tank Before Collection
While I don’t need to tell you that you should fuel the vehicle during your agreement in order to use it, what can be less obvious is that you should also ensure there’s some fuel in the tank when you hand it back over to your provider.
Most providers recommend there should be enough fuel for the car to last 50 miles, which is a similar amount to what’s in the car when you first take it over,
For a definitive answer, you should ask your specific provider about the amount of fuel they expect to be in the car when they collect it.