Ready to Lease a Copier? 2

What makes sense, lease or purchase?

Leasing a copier can be process that companies find exhausting.  First, you have to get the details on the current lease, look over expiration dates, look and see if a buyout is necessary and start getting quotes from vendors.

Most companies get more than 1 quote for a copier lease.  This is where the headaches, as well as some savings, can happen.   If every company just signed the next lease without some sanity check, it can get pretty brutal.

How Brutal Can it Get?

Some of the worst copier leases we have seen have been done by current vendors who had gained and exploited the trust they had been given by their clients.  This is a terrible state of affairs, in our opinion, because we believe trust should be cherished and not exploited.

Some of the worst examples we have seen –

  • $1400 per month for 1 color copier including 3000 color prints per month (Should be closer to $350 to $500 for this)
  • $200 per month for a cheap black and white that should have been $50 per month
  • $400 per month for a 5 year old used copier, on a 5 year lease
  • $260 per month on a copier that was 8 years old, the lease had already expired, but the customer never gave the copier leasing company notice, so they just kept getting billed for the full rate for 3 extra years!

We trust you won’t have one of these terrible rates, but even if you do, we are happy to help you navigate your situation to a better place.  Sometimes it means to ride it out to the end, following all of the exit rules to the T as spelled out in the lease.  This is what we helped the company with the $1400 a month lease do.  They had to suffer with that bad lease for almost a year before they could full get rid of it.

Sure, we could have rolled it in and saved them a ton for the year, but then they would have to pay a lot more for then next four years.  So we looked at the numbers, the buyout was nearly $20,000 – which would have added $350 or so a month for 5 years, plus the $350 for the normal copier plus prints…

We just has the conversation with them.

  • Which do you prefer, $1400 per month for 1 year and then $350 per month the the next four year (Total Cost – $33,600 total cost)
  • $700 per month for the next 5 years (Total Cost $42,000)

They decided they would prefer to eat more now to save more later.  The savings happen primarily because they are not paying for 2 copiers for 1 year.  Sometimes, as much as it pains us to say, sticking with a bad copier lease until the end makes more sense than getting a new copier lease.  We always tell the clients what their options are and are here to help them do whatever they prefer and makes business sense for them.

So, assuming you don’t have a horrible lease you are dealing with, what are some things you can do to ensure you have the best deal when you lease a copier?

  • When you lease, look at the contract and see when you need to notify the leasing company about returning the copier.  Put a notice in several people’s todo list 4.5 years down the road (in case someone leaves the company)
  • Try and not combine the lease and the service plan, if possible.  Yes it is easier to have one number and one bill, but it is much harder to buy out if you have issues with your current copier company
  • Get the costs itemized so you can know what you are paying for items like fax, staple, hole punch, booklet makers, etc
  • If you plan to keep the copier, do a $1 lease rather than paying the FMV rate at the end
  • If you plan to return the copier, do a 5 year lease to extend the life of the copier
  • Check and make sure you are not having escalation clauses per year in your copier lease
  • Check and be sure you have sent the leasing company your paperwork that you have insurance in case of fire, flood, etc (most charge an extra $10 to $20 per month if you don’t provide this).

Getting a copier lease can feel overwhelming and confusing.  We hope we can help you navigate through this tricky time.  It is hard enough to have to know your job, know about all the different vendors, keep your clients happy.  It is important to work with someone on your lease who takes good care of you and won’t put your company at risk by putting you in a bad copier lease.

If you have a bad lease and want us to look at it with you, we would be happy to do so.  However we can help you with your copier lease, we are here for you!