Is Buying Better than Leasing?
Those looking into getting behind the wheel of a new vehicle are confronted with the choice of leasing or owning. So which is the better choice? Well, it largely depends on the driver and their needs, but both options certainly provide distinct advantages.
When leasing, your monthly payment is essentially a payment for vehicle depreciation since you are more or less borrowing the vehicle from the dealership. When purchasing, your finance payments are generally higher because you are paying down the actual vehicle proper. Since the vehicle is your property, you are paying it toward completion, whereas you are essentially renting when leasing.
When the terms of a lease end, drivers have the option to return the vehicle and walk away or purchase the vehicle for the remaining balance. When finance payments end, the purchased car is your property in full.
Leasing is useful for those who might change vehicles with some frequency. Leasing provides better trade-in and warranty advantages, whereas when one purchases a car, they can only then sell or trade into a new vehicle. Leases, however, place limits on the mileage and charge penalties for anything over that total.
Edmunds.com provides an extremely comprehensive breakdown of the comparison between buying and leasing which is worth a perusal if you are seriously mulling which way is best for your needs. In shorthand, think of leasing as renting an apartment and buying as, well, home buying. Both will address your needs, and each situation is dependent upon factors such as finances and a need for permanence.
What about your experience? Is buying better than leasing?