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End of the year is coming

The end of the year is upon. Hard to believe, after Thanksgiving hits, look out. December sneaks up fast and for many of us this is a month for planning, celebration, but also getting a great deal on an auto lease before 2020. Leasing and buying are obviously two very different things. Yet, both also hold a range of similarities. We have written previously on the pros and cons of leasing compared to buying, so we’ll spare you that tirade. However, if you’ve already got your heart and mind set on leasing, then read on because there are some can’t miss tips that follow.

Effective scouting

The first thing to do is tap into your inner scout. You know, that sleuth you always wanted to be, the detective career you fancied but never had the guts to follow through with. Everyone enjoys scouting, and if you’re going to lease, this quality needs to be front and center.

Before walking into a dealership, know exactly the car you’re seeking and of course whether said dealer has that car in stock. We can’t tell you how many stories we’ve heard of folks wandering on to lots, unsure of the exact make and model they’re seeking, relying on the salesperson to convince them, or worse yet, settling on a car that isn’t in stock. If you’re bringing a car to trade-in, scout out the fair market trade-in value beforehand. If a trade-in is possible for $7,000, and the dealer is remaining firm at $5,000, then you have some space to negotiate.

Next, if you’re planning on leasing through the financial arm of the manufacturer you’ve chosen (Hyundai Motor Finance or Ford Motor Credit for example), secure the financing ahead of time. You will already know your interest rate, how much you can borrow and margin for negotiation.

Bargain Bin

Folks like to buy or lease at the end of the year because there are bargains to be had. Dealers spend all year trying meet annual sales goals or fill quotas and if they’re falling short then you can be sure some discounts will be applied to existing stock.

The popular website Autotrader.com recommends to set an alert to your phone or email for when the car you are seeking becomes available. It is inconceivable to think you’ll be monitoring auto offers throughout November and December. Unless of course you have little to do and this sort of thing really floats your boat. Most vessels however do not float on these proverbial waters, so the alert is your best buddy in these circumstances.

Model or Calendar Year

Lastly, when you lease a car, your signature and date on the contract stipulates when the lease begins. If you choose to lease a 2020 model ride for 36 months for example starting in December (2019), the lease will be up in 2022. Waiting until 2020 will result in another calendar year tacked on.

Most of the depreciation of a new car occurs during the first couple years so tacking on another year is just that – another year of depreciation. This is another reason why people rush to lease before the end of the year so they can count the current year as “year 1.” The saying, “lease now!” is a saying for a reason.

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