If you already know that your next car is going to be a luxurious upgrade from what you’re currently driving, there’s only one question you need to ask yourself. Do you want to buy or lease?
You’re probably used to buying or financing all the cars you’ve ever owned. And financing often makes good sense. After all, the car is yours after you make that final payment. Cars to depreciate rapidly, but it is still an asset.
But there are times when a lease makes more sense than a financing agreement. You must consider that leases come with lower monthly payments and typically require less money down upfront.
This can be especially helpful when you’re considering a luxury vehicle.
Advantages of leasing a luxury car
You have a few hundred a month in the budget that’s dedicated to your new car payment. Now, comes the fun part. You get to decide how to spend that money.
If you finance versus lease the same exact vehicle, your finance payments will be higher. So you can get more luxury for your monthly payment on a lease than a finance. You’ll also get away with putting up a smaller down payment on a lease, so that’ll free up some extra cash.
Also, leasing a luxury car can give you some peace of mind. This car will be under warranty for the entire time you’re driving it, so if it turns out to have any defects, the repairs will be covered.
And if you’re the type who always likes to have the latest and greatest, at least in cars, you’ll have the option to upgrade as soon as your lease term is over. This is a great benefit to drivers who like having access to the latest tech and security features.
If this all sounds great, you should also learn about the potential downsides of leasing (it isn’t for everyone). There are mileage limitations, so if you drive a lot, you may be better off financing. You will also need excellent credit to be eligible for a lease, especially if you want a good deal.
Advantages of buying a luxury vehicle
Financing versus leasing a vehicle is like the flip side of the coin. The advantages and disadvantages are the almost exact reverse.
When you finance a luxury car, you can expect higher payments, but you will own the car when the term has ended. So you’re driving the car as if it’s yours the entire time. You don’t have to worry about mileage or wear fees, and you can customize the vehicle to your liking. At the end of your term, you’ll have some equity that you can roll over into a new purchase.
If you have less-than-stellar credit, financing is the way to go. You probably won’t get a lease deal with poor credit, and if you do, it won’t be a good one.
But financing offers a bit more flexibility. You can expect higher interest rates for poor credit, but at least you can shop around.
You may not want to finance if you have great credit and are looking to keep your monthly payments as low as possible.
There is no right or wrong choice, but there’s probably one that stands out as being better for you. Remember that if you decide to lease this vehicle, you can buy the car at the end of your term or buy a different car.
A lease is a relatively temporary decision. If you’re not sure about which vehicle you really want or you know you’re going to want to upgrade soon, a lease is right for you.
If you’d feel more comfortable buying your luxury vehicle, go that route. Just be sure to think through your budget, credit score and vehicle usage before you land on anything.