PHILADELPHIA - Buying and leasing a car often includes flexibility, affordability, and personal preferences. For those with limited cash, leasing makes sense as it offers low monthly payments and no major repairs. However, if you have the money and the time to invest in buying a vehicle, leasing can make sense too.


Leasing a car is a great way to drive a new model without breaking the bank. It offers lower monthly payments, lower cash out-of-pocket costs, and manufacturer maintenance and warranty coverage. Additionally, it gives lessees flexibility, as they are not stuck with the same car for a long period of time. They can trade the car in for another model if they decide it is not worth keeping.

In addition, the monthly payment for leasing a car is calculated by calculating depreciation over the lease term, divided by the number of months. For example, a vehicle with a residual value of $12,600 would have a monthly payment of $350. In addition, there are various other fees, including sales tax and miscellaneous charges.


One of the benefits of leasing a car is its flexibility. You can either return the car to the leasing company or purchase it outright when the lease ends. Another advantage of leasing a car is that you can change your lifestyle without worrying about a long-term commitment.

While some leasing companies offer a month-to-month contract, others are more rigid and have a minimum term. Sometimes, you may have to swap cars frequently, which can be very inconvenient. Always make sure to ask how long the contract is before signing it. You don't want to be locked into a contract that will not suit you.

Another advantage to leasing is that you can switch between different cars during the same period. This allows you to take advantage of new technologies and get a cheaper price than if you purchased them outright. Buying outright is also an option, though it's not as common as leasing. You can opt for an aggressive lease deal if you love a certain car. The car's residual value can be close to the market price when the lease ends. You can then use the equity in your leased car to get a better lease or purchase deal. This option is known as the trade-in value and will be discussed further in the section on lease options.

Down payment

Many people think that a large down payment will lower their monthly payments, but that's not always the case. A larger down payment will lower your monthly payments and will not reduce your total payments. However, it is important to remember that your down payment won't be refunded if you decide to return the car at the end of the lease.

Many dealerships require a down payment when leasing a car. This down payment amount will vary depending on the dealership, the value of the vehicle, and the promotional offer. The down payment will help to lower your monthly payment, but it's also possible to lower your monthly payments by trading in a previous vehicle.

Cost of leasing vs. buying

In most cases, the upfront costs for a lease are less than the total cost of buying a car. This difference is due to a number of factors. The first factor is the amount of sales tax, which is generally 8-10% of the price of the car. For leasing, however, the sales tax is variable and is usually calculated on the down payment or monthly payments. In some states, sales tax is also charged on the security deposit and signing fee, which can be significant. A lease usually requires a $1,000 down payment and a security deposit.

Another consideration is the number of monthly payments. Leasing a car requires less money upfront, but this frees up cash you can invest in other avenues. Additionally, a car that is purchased builds equity. While leasing has lower monthly payments, it is not as profitable as buying a vehicle.


Savings when leasing a car are often more than the initial cost. Leasing a car means making a monthly payment based on the manufacturer's suggested retail price. The monthly payment can also be negotiable. Typically, the monthly payment is based on the vehicle's cost, but you can negotiate it to make it less. It's also possible to negotiate the length of the lease.

Some cars have low residual values. Therefore, they're ideal for leases. But be careful: these vehicles can depreciate faster than the average. So, opt for vehicles with a high residual value if you want to maximize your savings. If the vehicle's residual value is high, then your monthly payment will be lower. Also, you'll be able to negotiate for a lower price, which means you'll have more money in your pocket each month.


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