Car questions

Can you lease a used car?

Leasing a used car is possible, but it takes a little effort. You may know that you can buy or lease a vehicle, but many drivers may not understand that leasing a used car may also be an option. A used car lease can save money but usually has fewer features and limited contract options. If you’re wondering, “Can you lease a used car?” we have the answer and more for you. Find out the pros and cons of used car leasing, how to find used cars for lease, and other, more flexible options.

Can you lease a used car?

It’s possible to lease a used car, but it may be more challenging than it sounds. Some dealerships may allow you to take over someone else’s lease, but, in this case, you don’t have complete control over the features in the vehicle. You may also be able to lease a certified pre-owned vehicle, but the inventory of these vehicles is also often limited.

Understanding car leasing

Car leasing allows you to borrow a car in return for a monthly payment. Unlike when you buy a car, you don’t own the vehicle at the end of your lease contract. Instead, you’ll turn in the vehicle and potentially lease another.

Pros of car leasing

Some of the pros of leasing a car include the following:

  • You have lower maintenance and repair costs.
  • You always get to drive a newer vehicle with the latest technologies.
  • You don’t have to deal with the hassle of selling your vehicle.
  • You get lower down payment requirements.

Cons of car leasing

A few considerations of leasing a car include:

  • You never own the vehicle.
  • You may get charged an expensive per-mileage rate if you exceed your allowance
  • Insurance rates may be higher when leasing.
  • You may get charged extra fees for excessive wear and tear.

Advantages of leasing a used car

Discover why leasing a used car may be right for you:

  • You receive a lower monthly payment compared to leasing a new vehicle.
  • Many leases come with extended warranties, which can make repairs more affordable.
  • You could buy the vehicle at the end of the lease for a reduced price.
  • You may qualify for lower insurance rates.

Disadvantages of leasing a used car

Consider the following points before leasing a used car:

  • The low inventory of used cars can lead to a lack of availability.
  • Few feature options are available for used vehicles.
  • Used cars may come with higher interest rates.
  • Used cars are likely to have some wear and tear from previous drivers.

How to lease a used car

Discover how to lease a used car step by step:

  1. Research dealers: Before leasing a used car, you’ll need to find a dealership that offers this lease type. You can check out used car dealerships or contact the vehicle manufacturer from whom you want to lease directly to find out who offers used car leases. You may have to call many dealers and finance departments to find a place willing to lease a used car.
  2. Choose your vehicle: Once you find a dealer willing to lease a used car, you’ll choose from the available inventory. Consider the type of vehicle you need and want and compare it against your car buying budget. Make a list of the essential features and prioritize them. Because you’re shopping from previously leased cars, your options may be limited.
  3. Discuss financing: Just because a dealer offers you a used car agreement doesn’t mean you should immediately agree to the price. Make sure the used car is worth the price. Be sure to ask about warranties or mileage limits so that you don’t face unexpected costs.
  4. Compare prices: Once you have a quote on a used car lease, compare the cost against other options. For example, you don’t want to pay more to lease a used car than the amount you might pay for a new car lease. You may also find more used car deals by considering alternative options.

Remember that it may take more research to find dealers that offer used car leases. You also may not find used car leases with the exact features you want or in the color or trim level you prefer. Flexibility is essential when searching for the right used car lease.

Documents required when leasing a used car

You’ll need to bring a few documents when signing your paperwork. Some documents include:

  • Driver’s license.
  • Recent paycheck stubs or a copy of your W-2.
  • Proof of residency (a utility bill with your name listed).
  • Proof of vehicle insurance.

Some dealers may also require personal references to better gauge your creditworthiness. Having these references on hand is helpful.

Comparison: Leasing a new vs. used car

Comparing costs, maintenance expectations, and contract requirements between new and used cars can help you decide if a used car lease suits your needs. Consider the following factors:

Cost comparison

Cost is one of the most significant differences between leasing a new and a used car. Because used cars are worth less than new cars, you can often expect a cheaper monthly payment. A used car lease also depreciates slower than a new car, meaning it won’t lose as much value during your lease term.

Whether you choose a new or used car lease, you must make monthly payments. The cost of these monthly payments depends on various factors, including the vehicle’s value, warranty coverage, down payment, and credit score. You can also expect to pay extra vehicle ownership costs, including insurance and title fees, with a new and used car lease.

Maintenance comparison

Older, used cars tend to have more maintenance needs, but a lease may cover these recurring costs. However, new and used car leases are subject to mileage allowance limits. If you exceed these mileage limits, you’ll have to pay a premium per mile that you go over. Dealers may also limit the maintenance tasks they will cover on used car leases, especially if the manufacturer’s warranty no longer covers the car.

Length of contract comparison

Some differences may exist in the contract length you can get with a used or new car lease. Leases are usually available in two- to four-year increments. Dealers may be less willing to offer longer, four-year leases on used cars since they’re more likely to need more maintenance with the added miles.

The minimum lease term available on traditional leases is two years. Most dealers aren’t willing to offer leases less than this because it takes at least this length of time to recoup the cost.

Credit requirements comparison

Leasing a new or used car requires a hard credit inquiry, which means the inquiry will stay on your credit report for two years. Hard inquiries can impact your credit score, especially if you continue trading in and leasing new vehicles every few years. Look for sources that require only a soft credit pull, which won’t affect your credit scores. You can enjoy the flexibility and convenience of a reliable vehicle while protecting your credit for other big purchases.

Alternatives to used car leasing

If leasing a used car isn’t for you, you may have other options. You could lease a new car, but this will likely come at a much higher price than leasing a used car. You could also rent a car but this can become very pricey if your needs last beyond a few days.

You could also Flexcar, which is another option that’s convenient and affordable. When you use a car subscription service, you get access to a large inventory of late-model used cars ranging from 2020 to 2022 model years. You get a reliable vehicle that fits your unique needs. Choose from SUVs, minivans, trucks, or sedans.

The car subscription model allows you to enjoy access to a vehicle when needed without being locked into a lease agreement. You can swap your current vehicle for a different one whenever you want or modify your mileage plans as your life needs change. Have friends visiting for the summer and need something more sizable? Swap your current car for a spacious SUV. Want a more reliable vehicle during the winter with an all-wheel-drive system? No problem! You can change vehicles as frequently as you want, all for a low flat rate per swap.

Used car leasing offers many advantages over leasing a new car. Flexcar subscriptions have the same benefits but even more perks, including insurance and maintenance bundled into the monthly payment. When you want a long-term alternative to car ownership and a more flexible option for leasing a car, Flexcar may be the solution for you. Check out our expansive inventory of Flexcar vehicles today.