Cons of a Car Lease

Leasing a car offers many benefits, but it’s not without its downsides.  Car leases can be expensive, and in the end, you end up with nothing, only to start the whole process all over again.  So let’s look at some of the negative aspects, shall we.

You Pay for the Most Expensive Years

There’s a reason the dealer is willing to give you that brand spanking new car during the prime of its life; you’re paying for it.  In fact, you are paying a premium to keep the car during its prime and dump it in its less formidable years.  Your monthly payments are determined by the difference in purchase price and the residual value when you turn the car in.  So cars that have a higher resale value should end up costing you less for what you get.

The Payments Never Stop

One downside to a car lease is that it seemingly has no end, meaning you must keep making monthly payments for as long as you continue to lease a car.  With a loan or an outright purchase, you don’t have to make a payment each monthly infinitely.  Sure a loan also requires monthly payments for a specified period of time, but once the car is paid off, it’s yours.  With a lease, the term simply ends and you are left with nothing.  Not only that, but you’ll have to get back out there and find a new car and a new lease.

Get Used to Car Shopping

That brings us to the next leasing drawback.  You’re constantly at the car dealership negotiating, wheeling and dealing for that next deal.  Most leases last anywhere from two to three years, so you’ll find yourself shopping for a car quite frequently.  Keep in mind that you’ll need to line up a new lease before the old one ends, unless you have access to an interim form of transport.  And if there aren’t any new models out there that you’re interested in, you may be out of luck, especially if you’re tired of your old car.

Another Down Payment

I don’t think anyone likes making down payments, especially large ones on expensive vehicles.  And with a lease, it may seem like the down payments keep on coming.  Especially if your lease term is only for two years, it’ll be no time before your writing another large check to the dealer to get the latest hot thing.  With a car loan, you make a down payment once and the car is yours in the end.  With a lease, you make down payments every few years, and monthly payments forever.

You Drove the Car a Bit More than Expected

But before you replace the car, you’ve been told that there were some overages.  Sure you thought 10,000 miles a year would be sufficient, but it turned out you drove the car a lot more than you had originally planned, showing it off to all your friends.  And guess what, the dealer wants you to write another check for all those extra miles, and the cost of the mileage is double what it would have been had you paid for more upfront.

Those Unexpected Damages

Oh yeah, and then there are the damages to the vehicle.  You shouldn’t have parked the car on the street, what with all the careless drivers parallel parking around you.  Now your leased car is dinged and nicked to the point where the dealer wants a cut to get it refurbished.  Great; more out-of-pocket costs, at the worst time, when you’re shopping for a new car.