When Can You Find The Best Lease Deals?
Sometimes you can snag a bargain when sales are down. Other times, say, at the end of the year or during model year changes, you can take advantage of dealership incentives to get the best lease deals.
If riding around in last year’s model is not off the table, you might be able to nab a good price when car companies unveil their new rides, usually in late summer or early fall. That’s when you’re most likely to be offered sale prices and generous rebates by dealerships eager to clear out older models to make space for new ones.
Be mindful, though, that models are typically redesigned every four to six years. So, last year’s ride may not have the latest features or upgrades. Do your homework if this is important to you. On the other hand, sometimes the differences between the new model and last year’s model are very slight. That’s when you can really get a great deal.
Some say the end of the month is hands down the best time to lease. That is difficult to argue against. Most automotive companies establish sales goals for dealers, which usually set similar goals for their own shops. Meeting those goals can result in nice bonus payouts and dealers love bonus payouts. That is more than ample motivation for dealers to encourage their salespeople to deal.
While some people advocate waiting until the very last day of the month, it’s not the only day you are likely to get a good lease deal. If a dealer is nearing a goal with a few days to spare in the month, deals may be in play during that time, too.
On the other hand, if they’re being really firm on the price during that period, it’s likely their goal has been made. Look for a less successful dealer with which to do your deal before the month is over.
One good strategy when searching for a bargain is to shop early in the month, and once your choices are narrowed, lease toward the month’s end. In other words, a good rule of thumb is: shop around and test drive early, but lease later in the month. This way you won’t have to feel rushed when you evaluate the car to ensure it fits your needs.
You may also have a good shot at a lease bargain if you hold off until the end of the year. As with monthly targets, many dealerships stand to get robust bonuses for hitting annual goals. A dealer that needs a few more vehicle sales to reach that target will likely be even more eager to put you in a new ride.
By the way, many car dealerships also have quarterly goals. So, you also might want to think about leasing a new vehicle in March, June, September, or December to take advantage of deals then, too.
It is common to see lease promotions during the holidays. If you shop around during holidays such as Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, and Christmas, there is a decent chance a dealer will be offering steep discounts.
Take note, though, your deal may require you to sign for a lower mileage allowance or to lease a car in a certain color. Read the agreement carefully to avoid any strings that may be attached to a dealer’s offerings.
The bottom line is that finding the best lease deal for your budget often comes down to timing. Between month-end, quarterly, year-end, and holiday bargains, there’s a good chance you can come away with a sweet agreement — to match your sweet new ride.