Company lets customers lease vehicles, skip the downpayment

If you’re looking at getting a car for 2013, should you buy or lease? How about another option—like buying out someone else’s lease and saving the down payment?

Listen to this lease deal David Byard of Indianapolis got on a BMW that’s about a year old.

“It’s a BMW 328xi for about $450 a month. And at the end of the remaining two years of the lease, I have the right to buy it for $25,000.”

Normally the lease would be closer to $600 a month, not the $450 he’s paying. But David didn’t get a normal lease. He took over someone else’s using Swapalease.com. It’s the largest lease assumption program in the U.S.—and most people don’t even know about.

“In fact, all of the vehicles I’ve ever looked at on there are newer vehicles that are under warranty, so it takes some of that concern on acquiring someone else’s car out of the equation because it’s actually an under warranty vehicle. If there’s a problem, you just take it back to the manufacturer,” David said.

Swapalease is based out of Cincinnati, but they have a growing number of customers in Central Indiana. The company told Fox59 that sellers like because it’ll get them out of a lease they may no longer want or can’t afford.

“And on the buying side of the equation, people really like the fact that it’s a short-term commitment, as well as there is little or no money down in most cases,” said Scott Hall, Swapalease’s vice president of operations.

There is a fee. Sellers pay about $100, which is far less than most penalty payments for ending a lease early. Buyers pay roughly $50. Keep in mind that buyers skip that typical down payment—it was already shelled out by the first person to lease it. Those down payments can be in the thousands of dollars.

On the website, you contact the owner, and each deal is different.

“This car had two years remaining on it. It had 33,000 miles left under the lease. It was a fully-loaded vehicle. And the seller was offering to cut a check to somebody who was willing to assume that vehicle from him,” David told Fox59.

That’s right…the owner paid him $1,500 extra to take over the lease. It’s the second time David has used the service.

Swapalease has a great selection of vehicles to meet anybody’s needs…anything from sports cars to an SUV to a family sedan,” Hall said.

Owners like David say you can easily narrow down exactly what kind of vehicle you’re looking for and where you want to find it.

“They have a full range of what you’re looking for, types of vehicles, mileage, those things. I always start with the geography because it’s easier to assume a lease and view a vehicle that’s local.”

He found his vehicle in Noblesville, just five miles from his house. One thing to note, buyers still have to qualify to take over the lease by the original leasing company.

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