Precision-crafted luxury calls for precision-crafted payment solutions. The Phil Smith Acura team has the Acura financing tools to optimize your deal. We hear from customers all the time who are new to the process of Acura financing, so we've put together this handy page to discuss the difference between leasing and financing, as well as the impact your financial history has on your payment. We believe in a transparent process here at Phil Smith Acura, and we believe in the saying, "know before you go." By the end of this article, you'll walk away with a firm understanding of the nuances behind Acura financing, leasing, and your financial profile. If you're an old pro, then skip ahead and jump straight to your new Acura!

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Benefits of Leasing vs Buying an Acura from our Fort Lauderdale, FL Acura Dealership

BenefitsLeasingBuying
Ownership x
Lower Down Payment x
Lower Monthly Payment x
No Mileage Limit x
Vehicle Customization x
Easier Trade In x

Understanding the Benefits of Buying vs. Leasing an Acura

Interior. Phil Smith Acura Showroom. Day, In Pompano Beach, FL.

The sun is shining. Palm trees are swaying. And happy customers sit with a sales professional at Phil Smith Acura. Their next Acura vehicle is beside them. They look thoughtful. The Phil Smith Acura sales professional leans in.

Sales Associate: You're thinking about your Acura payment, right?

Customer: Yup. We love this new MDX, but we're also on a budget. What's better, leasing or buying? I love the idea of having a smaller payment, but I also like to own what I pay for. What should we do?

The sales associate signals to his favorite porter, who knows the drill. The porter arrives at the sales desk with two cups of coffee and hands them to the customers. Then, the sales professional pulls out a paper, a pen and writes, "Car financing vs. Car leasing" at the top.

This scene plays out more times than you'd think. New customers are payment conscious, but they are also unsure of the differences between leasing and financing and what that means for them. For most people, it all comes down to the almighty payment. Typically, this is the only criteria that matters, and in short, leasing will always be a lower payment than financing. But what about all the other little details? The camera zooms in tight on the sales associate's paper, and we see what he wrote:

Car Leasing - is ideal for people who drive a predictable amount per year, love getting a new vehicle every few years, and prefer to drive with less money out of pocket. The reason why leases cost less is because the driver is paying for the predicted depreciation & usage of the vehicle. In almost all cases, this predicted amount (known as the residual) is about 50% less than the total price of the car. With leasing, the fewer miles you drive, the smaller the payment. The more you drive, the higher the payment. And it's that variable that often makes people switch to a finance scenario.

Car Buying - is for people who love to keep a vehicle for more than five years and who drive more than 18K miles per year. With a lease, the 15K mile/year mark is usually the tipping point where monthly payments match a financing scenario. Some customers prefer to have an experience without mileage restrictions and elect to finance their vehicle since the monthly payments are so close.

The customers take a look at the explanation the sales associate wrote down for them. They filled out the online credit application for Acura finance before coming in, so they've already been pre-approved. They know their driving habits. They know their monthly budget. And the deal sheet for the lease and finance scenario is side by side on the sales desk. They look at each other and smile. They shake the sales associate's hand and sign on the deal sheet they knew was right for them.

The End. The camera pulls back, and we fade to brilliant sunlight in South Florida.

Terms To Know Before You Go

The following is a list of all the insider car dealer lingo that you'll need to understand what accounts for your monthly payment, regardless of your Acura financing or leasing scenario.

  • Monthly Payment - This is what you pay, per month, to drive the beautiful Acura of your choice. The payment amount is a function of a few variables. Depending on those variables, your payment can swing up or down.
  • Capitalized Cost - Essentially, this is the price of the vehicle. Often referred to as "Cap-cost." The higher the cap-cost, the higher the payment. The lower the cap-cost, the lower the payment. When you hear someone talk about "cap-cost reduction," they are referring to any applicable incentives, discounts, or financial contributions by you (known as the down payment).
  • Down Payment - Regardless of leasing or financing, the more you put down, the lower the cap-cost will be. This also lowers the amount that gets financed, thus decreasing your payment.
  • The Term - is the length of time you will be paying for the vehicle. Both lease and finance have a sweet spot that is optimized for payments. With a lease, it's right around 36mo. With finance, it's right around 60mo. The longer the term, meaning the longer you wish to take to repay, the lower the payment. However, interest rates and lease rates increase slightly with longer terms, and while your monthly payment is less, the total amount you will pay over time might be more.
  • Interest Rate, Lease Rate, & Money Factor - When you take out a loan to finance, you get an interest rate. When you take a loan out to lease, you get a lease rate (otherwise called a money factor). Both of these rates are a function of your credit history. The higher your credit rating, the better the rate (which lowers your payment).
  • Credit Application - Otherwise known as a "credit-app," you will have to fill this out to get an approval from Acura financial. Depending on your credit score, you may be asked for a "co," "co-signer," or "co-applicant" to strengthen your application.

These are all the key terms that you will hear your sales associate use, as well as your finance manager. If you have any questions about how your financial situation optimizes your deal, you can always call ahead to discuss your credit application with one of our finance managers (or your sales associate).


Find an Acura Model To Lease in South Florida

Well, that's an easy one! Look at our drop-down menus back up top. Click the "Specials" tab. To the right, you'll see lease specials on select Acura models. You can also click the "New Inventory" button to research models and check out any featured vehicles that might be available. Lastly, we wanted to let you know that you don't just have to go with a new vehicle to experience our world-class service. We have an amazing inventory of used cars from some of the most exciting off-brands around. You'll find cars, trucks, SUVs, wagons, and more from all the popular makes that you see driving around near Fort Lauderdale. Whatever it is that you're looking for, you'll find it here at Phil Smith Acura - with a happy Hollywood ending waiting for you, too!

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