If you are looking to buy a new auto, and you enjoy driving something new every few years, an auto lease can be a great solution.
Credit Score & Report
Before you consider an auto lease, we highly suggest that you obtain a copy of your credit report and score; both of which are used by lease companies to determine if you qualify for an auto lease and, if so, under what terms and conditions. Federal law requires each of the 3 major credit bureaus to provide you a basic free annual copy of their credit report. You can request each of these at AnnualCreditReport.com, and you can purchase a comprehensive combined report of the three from CreditReport.com
Auto Lease Options
New Auto Lease Offers from the Manufacturer: the vast majority of auto lease programs are provided only on new auto sales, and are offered by the lending division of the applicable auto manufacturer. In addition, auto lease programs are generally only provided to buyers with good to excellent credit. So, if you have a specific new auto in mind and you want to see if you qualify for a auto lease, the best way to do that is working with a franchised dealer. Using our Dealer Select Pricing tool, you can easily identify your auto and get more information from local dealers in minutes.
Lease Compare: besides working directly with the finance arm of a auto manufacturer, Lease Compare is the only other online service that we are aware of that can help you compare and find a lease on a new or used auto. They have some great tools and real-time capabilities to help you identify lease programs you may qualify for.
Swap A Lease: if you're open to buying a slightly used auto, but still want to enjoy the benefits of a low lease payment, you may want to consider purchasing a used auto by taking over the original buyer's lease. Swap A Lease is the largest website in the category dedicated to helping connect sellers that want to exit their leases early with buyers that want to take over a lease payment.
As mentioned above, an auto lease can be a great option if you have good to excellent credit, enjoy the opportunity to get something new every few years, and can drive below a specific annual mileage and take good care of your auto. Under these conditions a lease can be a great financing tool. But, if you prefer to own your auto for a long time, drive many miles, or put more than moderate wear and tear on your auto, a lease may not be a good option as you will have to pay additional fees when your lease terminates.
So, make sure you completely understand the terms and conditions of each lease opportunity you consider, and make sure you can abide by those terms. Use our Auto Lease Calculator when evaluating different options.
Having good to excellent credit will allow you to consider multiple auto loan and auto lease options. If you do not qualify for an auto lease, you should consider financing a used auto purchase with an auto loan or by paying in cash.