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Is Short-Term Car Leasing Possible?

When you think car leasing, do you think long-term commitment?

The average car lease is 24 or 36 months, so it’s no surprise you have that impression. Many people who want the ease and flexibility of leasing a car are put off by the lengthy contract period.

However, this isn’t always the case. There are actually a few ways to lease a car for only a few months, though it might take a little more effort or expense than a standard contract. Check out these short-term car leasing options and see if they could work for you.

1. Lease swapping

happy people making a deal

If you don’t want to commit for a full lease period, why not pair up with someone who regrets committing for a full lease period?

It’s typically very difficult and expensive to end a car lease early. Often, the best way out for people who can’t or don’t want to keep their leases is to find another person to take over the contract.

You can find available leases on websites like SwapALease.com or LeaseTrader.com.

Of course, this option doesn’t give you so much flexibility. What models there are available, and how long of a lease contract they come with, is up to chance. But if you’re willing to wait and see what gets posted, you just might find exactly what you’re looking for.

In order to transfer into a lease, you will have to get approved under the same terms as the original holder of the lease.

Before you take over someone else’s lease, check both the mileage limits on the contract and the mileage already on the vehicle.

It’s a good idea to get the vehicle inspected by a mechanic. Sometimes people get into accidents with lease cars, have the vehicle patched up and then try to hand it over to an unsuspecting person who wants to take over a lease.

Damage isn’t always visible to the untrained eye, and you will be liable for any repairs at the end of the contract, so cover your bases.

Pro’s:

  • Possible to find many different cars and lengths of contract
  • Same terms and rates as a normal lease, just for less time
  • Easy and simple: just sign up with the website and browse recent postings
  • No down payment as with a full lease

Con’s:

  • No choice over what cars are offered
  • You are stuck with any damages or issues the previous lessee leaves with the car

2. Long-term rental

cars in lot

Another way to lease a car for a shorter time is to get a long-term rental. Many car rental companies offer “mini-leases” or a rental agreement where instead of paying per day or week, you are charged per month. This is a popular option for families on long road trips or corporate clients.

Plenty of mainstream rental companies, including Enterprise and Hertz, offer this service.

Pro’s:

  • Renew the rental month-to-month: you aren’t locked into a contract and can return the car whenever you want without fees
  • Faster and easier than finding a lease to swap into
  • Some companies allow you to switch cars if you want
  • Choose from a wide range of cars
  • Often includes roadside assistance, full insurance and free maintenance

Con’s:

  • More expensive than monthly payments on a normal lease
  • Read the fine print for mileage restrictions and damage liability
  • No option of buyout at the end

Which is the best way to get a short-term car lease?

girl sitting on car

So now for the big question: if you want a short-term car lease, is it better to find a lease to transfer into or sign up for a long-term rental?

Overall, a lease transfer will be much cheaper. You will pay standard monthly payments, like anyone else in a lease. A long-term rental, while discounted from the daily or weekly price, is still a rental and will cost significantly more per month.

Most people looking to get out of a lease are somewhere around the middle of their lease period, so there could be a year or more left on their contract. If you want a longer lease period but just not as long as a full lease, this might work very well for you.

For a really short-term lease, a long-term rental might actually work better. It cuts out the waiting, effort and uncertainty of finding a lease to take over. You can just sign up and go.

Long-term rentals also tend to include more support and services than leases.

So if you need a vehicle to get the job done for a few months, without too much trouble, you may be better off with a long-term rental.

And if you’re ready to step into a long-term lease, contact Capital Motor Cars. Our team of experts will find you exactly the car you’re dreaming of.

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