Commercial vehicles: Hire, buy or lease?
When looking to acquire a new vehicle for your business, it can often be difficult to determine which option is the best for you. There are so many options today; you can buy, lease or hire, and it can all get a little overwhelming considering the costs and benefits of each. Robert Blow, Fleet Manager at NAPIT Drive, shares his thoughts on the benefits of one-year hire compared with long-term leasing or buying when it comes to commercial vehicles.
Deciding whether to buy, lease, or hire is something people are divided on. It’s entirely dependent on your personal circumstances and preference. For those of you who like to drive a new vehicle and keep up to date with the latest models, rental is probably more appealing to you, as you can change your vehicle more frequently, and monthly payments are fixed and affordable. However, if you prefer your own vehicle to feel like ‘yours’, and are happy to keep it for a longer period, buying is probably the best option for you. And, if you want a straight forward way to hire a vehicle with a short commitment, flexibility and the option to drive a brand new vehicle every year then short-term hire could be the best solution for your business.
So, why hire? We all know that situations can change rapidly, particularly in business, and with a 12-month rental deal you don’t have to be thinking so far ahead and be fixed to a 36-month contract or longer. You can have the freedom to do whatever suits you and your business at the time, with the option to upgrade early if needed or opt out after a year if the vehicle isn’t right for you, or your circumstances change. Hiring a commercial vehicle on a short-term basis also means that there is no initial overlay of a deposit, which purchase and finance always requires, and long-term leasing can require depending on your circumstances. Meaning there’s no large up-front payments and you can easily spread out your costs.
Running a vehicle for just 12 months also reduces maintenance costs and wear and tear on tyres by eliminating the need to replace things such as brake pads, which can be expensive. The amount of accumulated damage will also be significantly less than a 3-5-year lease or purchase as you are likely to pick up less minor damage such as scratches and dents.
Unlike buying and some lease deals, short-term hire includes roadside assistance and warranty at no extra cost as standard. And, you also get the benefits of driving a brand new vehicle every year, with a brand new registration plate which always helps to create a professional and fresh company image for you and your team. In most cases, the vehicles supplied will be fully ply-lined and will arrive with the delivery mileage only. You will also have the latest technology available, including cutting edge emission and safety features coupled with great fuel economy.
The main downside to a rental package will be that you always have to give the vehicle back at the end of the term, with no option to own. So it is best to always be sure that you choose the acquisition option vehicle with the right features for your business needs.
Whatever deal you decide on make sure you take time to consider the costs and benefits of each to make the right choice for you and your business. Buying tends to bring a bit more freedom but can often rack up costs over time. Leasing can be cost effective and provide more security and rental provides you with a brand new vehicle every year and flexibility if you don’t want to commit to leasing or owning.
NAPIT Drive provides NAPIT members with an exclusive rental deal tailored exclusively for their needs. We have a portfolio of great vehicles ranging from small vans, right up to four metre large-panel vans specifically chosen for trade installer needs. Our industry professionals have years of experience in vehicle rental and can advise on specifications to help you choose.
Alongside this NAPIT Insurance can provide bespoke policies to help you insure your commercial vehicle and keep your business moving.