DeAnn Owens
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What to Do If Your Car Lease Ends During COVID-19

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COVID-19 has upended the world and left many things uncertain, especially in the retail sector. If your car lease is nearing its end, you’re probably stressing over what to do since most dealerships are limiting regular hours and face-to-face contact. Here are three options to consider.

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Extend your lease

Since you’re unable to follow traditional end-of-lease protocol involving a dealership appointment, vehicle inspection, and vehicle turn-in, one way to handle your lease is to extend it. Of course, this will option will depend on your lender.

“Vehicle financing companies vary in their policies. GM Financial, for instance, will automatically extend your lease for a month if you don’t contact them within 10 days of your lease termination. You’ll have to contact them if you need more time or additional options,” Tiffany Connors reports for The Penny Hoarder.

Ask for more time

Request a deferment or payment delay if you’re income is suffering due to income loss. According to Connors, delaying payments can be requested even if your lease isn’t near its termination. Be sure to inquire about this option, though. You don’t want to run the risk of losing your car because you’re considered delinquent in your payments.

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Buy the car

The easiest option, although the most costly, is buying the car, notes Connors. The option to buy a leased vehicle should be already in your leasing contract. Since a major appeal of leasing a car is getting behind the wheel of a brand-new model every few years, you might be hesitant to commit to the car you’ve been driving for years. However, in these uncertain and stressful times, officially ending your lease with the purchase of your car might at least alleviate some automotive concerns. This option, of course, is only possible, if your budget allows. Just like you did before you leased the vehicle, be sure to evaluate your finances before becoming a car owner. You might even be surprised that buying at this point will save you money down the road.

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