Top Tips to save money on a short-term car lease

Top Tips
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It can be really difficult to compare a short-term car lease in the UK, this is because, unlike car leasing, most short-term solutions are based on an individual vehicle and doesn’t allow the option to customise the vehicle you want. But we’re here today to give you some top tips on how to get the best when researching your next short-term car lease, whether it is from us or another company.

Getting Started

There may be various reasons why short-term car leasing may work for you. Whether it is a car you want to try over a long period before purchasing or it could be that you only need a car for a set amount of time. You need to decide what is important for you.

Research

Start by using Google or Bing to search for “short-term car lease” or “short-term car leasing” – If you need a particular length, then use different keywords such as “6-month car lease” or “1-year car lease”

Many companies will show up and it is a good idea to write a list of each one and read their recent reviews. Reputation is extremely important (which is why we are proud of our reviews on Google and Trustpilot). But make sure that they aren’t a new-start company, registered with the FCA and other things like being a member of the BVRLA also helps.

Pricing

Once you have narrowed down your selection of companies, then start compiling a list of cars you are interested in. Make sure you understand about any payment profiles or documentation fees (see below). There are also companies out there that charge per 28 days and not per month. All of our prices are based on a calendar month.

Initial Rentals

We show all prices based on the first month, plus documentation fee. There are companies advertising vehicles on a 6-month contract and they charge another month as an initial rental. This can be misleading and make the car look cheaper than it actually is.

Ask the company to provide you a written quotation if you are not sure, so you know exactly what you have to pay. Initial rentals are not refundable, so make sure you get this right first-time.

Documentation Fee

At Cocoon Vehicles, we charge a documentation fee. This covers our administration time, delivery of the vehicle and the associated checks with Experian, Transunion and other databases that we subscribe to. We make a loss on the majority of these fee’s, but overall it evens itself out.

Other companies may call this a “processing fee” “joining fee” or “admin fee” – It is essentially the same thing and will be chargeable as per their terms and conditions.

Refundable Deposit

Refundable deposits may be required from Cocoon Vehicles and the other short-term car lease companies for security. At the end of the day they are allowing you to drive a high-value asset and they need to be sure that it will be returned to a set-standard.

Some companies state the refundable deposit payable, with Cocoon this is subject to status ranging from NIL to a large amount.

Rentals

The rentals payable will be advertised by ourselves or other providers online, this doesn’t normally change unless you increase mileage allowances. These will usually be taken by Direct Debit, some providers still offer standing orders as an option.

Total Cost

To give you a true total cost for comparing the various companies, add all of the rentals, initial rentals and any documentation fee’s up and divide it by the contract length, this will give you a true monthly figure to help you decide which company is best for you.

Negotiate

If you have found the perfect car and contract length for you, then don’t be afraid to ask to see if there are any special offers available. Whilst we cannot always reduce the monthly cost due to manufacturer restraints, we might be able to offer discounts on higher mileage contracts.

Don’t be afraid to ask, the worst any one can say is no.

It is also important to find out if the company you work for has any affiliations of affinity schemes set-up. For example we offer discounts to NHS workers and employees of companies such as Rolls-Royce and British Airways.

Maintenance

Unlike Car Subscriptions generally short-term car leases do not come with maintenance as standard. Here at Cocoon Vehicles we offer this an option, but it isn’t always recommended.

If you take a 6-month contract on a VW Golf, and you only do 1,000 miles per month. The car will not be due a service or any tyres, so a maintenance package is pointless.

Mileage Requirements

It is really important to get your estimated mileage right. Under estimating your usage could end up with a large excess mileage bill, take too many miles and you could be paying for something that isn’t required.

Applications

Each and every short-term car lease provider have different qualification criteria for their applications. Some offer specialist services such as vehicles for expats or those who have a new start-up business.

If you have satisfactory credit, you will be asked for a copy of your driving licence (in your correct address) and a utility bill dated within the last 3 months, other firms may ask you to provide bank statements or login to an open banking system that will give you a score based on your income and spending habits.

For businesses, signing Directors will need to be willing to send across an up-to-date driving licence and a utility bill to comply with the checks.

Contracts

Contracts can be long and boring, but remember that this is a financial commitment and signing something you don’t understand could land you with a large bill.

Things you need to pay close attention to in any short-term contract includes:

  • Termination Costs – If you want to end the contract early
  • Return Standards – How the company expects the car to come back at the end of the contract
  • Collection Costs – At the end of the contract many companies charge for having your vehicle collected.
  • In contract charges – Such as if you were to receive a fine and what the admin fee is for them processing this.
  • Taking your car abroad – See what the process is to take the car to a foreign country, the documentation, the cost and if this is available.

Insurance

With most short-term car leasing contracts, fully comprehensive insurance must be supplied by the hirer. Before you commit, use comparison sites to find out the best quotes for your car.

Remember that you will not own the car or be the registered keeper, so make sure you select the right options. It is also cost effective to take a 12-month policy, even if you take a 6-month car lease and have to cancel this. It still works out cheaper than using a short-term insurance provider.

More Information

Have we missed anything from our top tips? Then drop us a line using the ENQUIRY FORM below. If you would like any further information on short-term car leases, click on the button below or call the team on 01332 290173.

Rebecca joined the Cocoon Vehicles team in 2018 after running and selling a successful financial services business offering pension, investments and mortgages. Today, Rebeccas goal is to provide the best possible customer service along with news that you will want to read.

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