Leasing a vehicle instead of purchasing one has become popular in recent years. You get the amenities and reliability of a new car, without being stuck with a rapidly deprecating vehicle after your loan term is over. A lease is typically issued for a two to four year period with a fixed number of miles the driver is allowed per year. However, many people travel for work, school, and internships, and might not need a vehicle for a standard term. That’s where a short term car lease can help. Instead of a multi-year lease, a short term lease is for a few months to a year. Here are a few secrets to finding an affordable short term lease.
Don’t Get a Short Term Car Lease From a Dealership
While some car dealerships offer short term leasing options, it can wind up costing significantly more than a standard lease. This is because the vehicle depreciates in value the most over the first years of use. Dealerships lease vehicles with the intention of making money off the initial lease, and then selling the used vehicle afterwards as a certified preowned. While a traditional 2-year lease costs an average of $500+ per month, a short term lease can be 1.5 to 2 times as expensive.
Along with being more expensive, getting a short term lease from a dealership is the most difficult. After you apply for your lease, you’ll undergo a credit check. Your lease’s interest rate and terms directly corresponds to your credit rating. If your rating is bad enough, a dealership will turn you away. After you eventually secure the lease, you’ll be responsible for maintaining the car.
Don’t Take Over Someone Else’s Lease
Not many people are aware of this trick, but a lease can be transferred from whoever initially bought the lease. While this seems like a way too skip the dealership and get a car directly, there’s often a very good reason why the original lessee is trying to get rid of their contract. Every lease has different rates and rules depending on the vehicle, original lessee’s credit, and whatever promotion the dealership was running. You could get stuck with low yearly miles while paying double what is standard.
If you have bad credit or no credit, adopting someone’s lease won’t help get you into a vehicle either. You still have to go through a credit check at some point in the process. Even online lease trading sites run a credit check. They typically run what’s called a hard credit check, which can lower your credit score per check. This isn’t an ideal situation if you’re looking for a short term car lease anyways. Most leases available through a third party still have several years left on the contract. If a lease is desirable and affordable, there’s no reason for the lessee to get rid of it in the first place.
Get A Long-Term Car Rental
You can get a better deal on a short term car lease at independent car rental companies.Whether you need a car for a weeks, months, or a year, a car rental agency will have more options at a better rate. A rental company will cover standard maintenance, as well as replacement if your vehicle breaks down. Some agencies offer insurance and roadside assistance bundles that cost less than the rate you would get from an insurance company. If you don’t like your vehicle after driving it for a bit, you can always bring it back and swap it out for something more your speed.
Another benefit of renting instead of leasing is that you don’t need good credit or even a credit card. Look for an independent rental agency that offers cash and debit card rentals for local driving. You’ll have to come up with a deposit either way, but it’s almost impossible to get a lease without fair credit.
How Do I Get a Short Term Lease in Los Angeles?
Value Rental Car offers clean and affordable rental cars for local driving in Los Angeles and Pasadena. If you’re a college student, we want to help you get on the road. We rent to drivers under the age of 21, and we offer cash and debit card car rentals. Check out some of our other articles to learn more about how car rental works!