Buy vs. Lease

Should I buy or lease my Subaru?

A common question we get asked at Eastside Subaru, "Is it better to buy or lease this Subaru?". It really comes down to your preference and what you are comfortable with. Do you find yourself looking for a new car every 3 years? Then leasing might be for you! Take a moment to review this list of Pro's and Con's to see what is best for you. We are always happy to help answer any questions you might have in regards to your vehicle purchase.


Advantages of Leasing:

  • Lower monthly payments with a low amount due at signing.
  • You can drive a better-equipped car for less money.
  • You typically stay within the Factory Warranty, so there is virtually no repair costs.
  • You can more easily transition to a new car every two or three years.
  • There are no trade-in hassles at the end of the lease.
  • Gap insurance is free from Subaru. If a leased car is totaled in a theft or accident, there's no risk of owing the bank more than the insurance proceeds.
  • Pay less sales tax. Washington sales tax only on the monthly payment instead of the whole car (may vary in other states)

Disadvantages of Leasing:

  • You don't own the car at the end of the lease (although there is always the option to buy).
  • Your mileage is typically limited to 10,000 to 15000 miles a year (you can purchase extra miles).
  • In the long run, leasing is more expensive than buying a car and keeping it for years.
  • You could be charged for excess wear and tear, typically $1,000-1,500 is allowed.
  • It can be difficult and/or costly to terminate a lease early.


Advantages of Car Buying:

  • You can modify your car as you please.
  • Car buying is more economical over the long term.
  • You can drive as much as you like. There's no excess mileage penalty.
  • You have more flexibility since you can sell the car whenever you want.

Disadvantages of Car Buying:

  • It requires a higher down payment to avoid being "upside down" in the loan, meaning you owe more than the car is worth.
  • Monthly payments are higher than lease payments.
  • Once the warranty expires, you're responsible for repair costs.
  • You face possible trade-in or selling hassles when you decide to get your next car.
  • More of your ready cash is tied up in a car, which depreciates in value.