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Old 03-13-2016, 08:26 PM   #1
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1974 21' Globetrotter
staten island , New York
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Leasing a tow vehicle?

Since our AS is a 74 Land Yacht, Globetrotter it weighs in dry at 3,400lbs. this has me looking at the new 2.7 F150. Right now we only take it out 3 times a year and only a couple of hundred miles from home. When our kids are bigger we will be going longer but this is what we do for now.

This got me thinking that maybe i could do a 3 year lease and then the thats up buy something else and start traveling further.

Someone suggested on F-book that I rent a tow vehicle since I only go out a few times a year but i use a tow truck for work and life stuff so i do need a pick up.

But leasing one, up until a few hours ago i would have never thought of doing it. Has anyone here ever leased their TV?

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Old 03-13-2016, 10:44 PM   #2
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Walnut Creek , California
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No - buy used or rent. My opinion only, of course. Rental can be a bit pricey but worth investigating. Not sure what you normally drive, but just about everything will pull the rig you describe. Spend some time reading the articles posted by Andrew on the CanAm RV web site. You don't need to agree with their approach, but he does offer some alternatives that are cost effective.

Now if all that still leaves you unconvinced, spend some time discussing the pros and cons of leasing. A vehicle that retains it's value may be an opportunity to negotiate a good lease term. You will have to keep it pristine, not roll up a lot of miles, and fork over a hefty down. But it may work for you. Start by having a conversation with your Ford dealer to get an idea of what they offer. This is an information interview and not a deal negotiation. If they don't want to talk, go to another dealer. When you run out of Fords, there is always the Rams to exercise. Then talk to the folks on the BMW, VW, Mercedes, and Porsche forums and see what money factors they are negotiating. These vehicles get leased, because they have good residual value, the dealers want to turn them multiple times to maximize profit and there is that new tech thing. In any case their lease rates can be quite competitive and it will represent the other end of the scale. With low interest rates, you may actually be better off with a long term finance at a low interest rate as long as you can pay off the loan early when you trade.

Then again, you could troll the commercial used truck lots and pick up a better deal.

Good luck with your investigation and travel safe. Pat

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Old 03-13-2016, 10:55 PM   #3
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Some people have found the best value in buying certified preowned vehicles just coming off three year leases.
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Old 03-13-2016, 11:03 PM   #4
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North Vancouver , British Columbia
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What do you currently drive? Might be worth exploring if your existing vehicle is up to the task.
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North Vancouver, BC
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Old 03-14-2016, 01:31 AM   #5
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Yes, I leased my 2015 Silverado.
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Old 03-14-2016, 01:48 AM   #6
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My opinion, my experience.

Hi, only twice have I leased a motor vehicle and I will never do it again. One was a business truck that I actually ended up buying. The other was a personal car. Leasing is just a high priced rental. Unless you own a business and can write off payments and depreciation don't ever lease a vehicle.

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Old 03-14-2016, 07:09 AM   #7
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You make 36 payments and it belongs to someone else. What a great idea. Maybe I can do that with a new Airstream, or better yet, a nice home.

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Old 03-14-2016, 08:55 AM   #8
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1971 31' Sovereign
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The only down payment I made was the license fee ($500), lower monthly payments than buying ($425) and I can purchase the truck after 3 years for about 50% of the full cost of the truck if I want, and I can write it off. I don't think about new tires, maintenance, breaking down and I get to drive vehicles with the latest advancements. No brainier for me.
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Old 03-14-2016, 10:18 AM   #9
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Opposite end of spectrum-
I finance a vehicle for 5 years then drive with no payment for another 10-12 years.
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Old 03-14-2016, 10:21 AM   #10
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I always lease even if I know I'm going to buy it at the end of the lease. Ford has the best lease in the business. Even if you could pay cash for a vehicle, you are better off to lease. One of the big advantages is you only pay sales tax on the monthly payment vs paying or financing the tax along with the purchase price. Also, you know up front what you will pay to buy the truck at the end of the lease. Always take the minimal miles since if you buy the truck at the end of the lease, miles do not matter. For me, I took a second on my house and paid the 36 month lease up front, got an additional discount, and my payments were all a tax deduction.
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Old 03-14-2016, 10:34 AM   #11
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Not a TV, but I once got burned by leasing a car. Ended up having to take the dealership to court to clear my financial record. I won. So not a big fan of leasing.

Do you know what a learning experience is? A learning experience is one of those things that says "You know that thing that you just did? Don't do that."
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Old 03-14-2016, 11:21 AM   #12
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My next TV if I ever need one will be a unit coming off a 3-year lease. I have never been burned buying cars off daily rental or leased term. I drive them till their dead; which usually means they are 10-12 years old when I finally give them away.
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Old 03-14-2016, 11:22 AM   #13
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Orange , California
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Hi dcorona,

We've been doing about 3 vintage trailer events a year all withing 20 - 450 mi. to them, as with you. So we've been renting TVs since 2013, but are currently looking for a used `08-13 Cayenne S as a TV/3rd car now that we're doing 5 a year & getting close to retirement when we can do more trips. Here are my recco's for the options....

There are some Toyota dealerships which will rent a pick-up or SUV equipped for towing & actually allow towing (typical Hertz, Alamo, etc. will not allow you to tow). We rented Nissan Pathfinders during 2014 from a dual Toyota & Nissan dealership, but they were 45 mins. away. they allowed us to just use our AAA insurance for the rental, but we'd still be liable for loss of use (same as with renting a car).

Most dealerships only have rental cars for customers with their own vehicles in the shop, so you'll have to call around to the dealers listed on the Toyota Rentals website.

Enterprise Truck Rentals (Enterprise Commercial Rentals - not the local car rental ones) rents 1/2 & 3/4 toin crew cab pick-ups for towing duties, but you'll need to either use their daily rental insurance or add them to your policy (not likely), & it is a good idea to open a business account with them for this, & you can write off rentals if the trips are for business (even if family comes along).

In both cases - you can only tow within your own state - at least in CA, but it may be different back there for you - so ask them.

They both also have a certain limited miles per day or week which is included in the price, over which you pay a stiff per mile fee in addition. So figure your round trip needs + incidental miles running around before/during/after, then pick either the number of days or week(s) which break even vs. the per mile charge on the minimum days you need it. Usually about 4-5 days is the break even point to go for a full week & pay the same. The rental staff can help you with that.

Our rentals ranged from $300-500 for 3-4 days, to $700-1000 for a week - depending on which vehicle & miles & whether their insurance was paid.

Been there, done that - & when I ended up buying at the end of the lease, I found that I'd paid 2x what just buying it outright, & the 72 month term loan payments would've been not that much more than the lease payments. Back then IRS rules on leasing vs. buying made the business write-off better on the lease, so it worked out with me on that basis. However, if you're in business & can write it off, then check with your accountant to see what's best for you under current IRS rules.

Note that lease rates are typically higher than interest rates - especially in recent years since they dropped so low. Beware of any added payments at the front end or back end of the lease, because there are several catch 22's in the lease terms.

Plus, you're basically paying for a long term rental of the value lost on the car over the term - or the part not covered by the "residual" value which they expect it to be at the end of the lease term (which is also usually your purchase price to buy out of the lease at the end), but beware that some leases allow them to "recapture" any added depreciation below their "residual value" estimate, as a balloon payment at the end of the lease.

Moreover, the lease only allows a certain max. miles per year & over the total term - over which you pay a per mile fee at the end of the lease (similar to the car rentals with limited mileage), which can be a killer! They can also charge you for any damage to the vehicle at the end. So you need to closely watch your use & mileage of a leased vehicle.

Otherwise, IMHO you're better off buying recent used or new - as you prefer & what works best for you. Do some research on lease vs. buy.

You say you need a pick-up for work anyway, so if it works in your budget, then get pre-qualified for a new &/or used car loan, & use a longer term to bring the payments down closer to leasing if need be. New you can generally finance 100% of the cost with license, taxes & other fees - whhile used can vary by age for 70-90% Loan to value (LTV).

Then keep in mind that with a new car, you lose 20-25+% of that vehicle the second that you drive it off of the dealer lot! That can be a big hit & can have most folks underwater on their loan for a year or two, until payments bring the principal down to what the then current used car value is at. If you plan to keep the car/truck for 7+ years, then that may be okay to have that initial loss of value, in return for the new car warranty, etc. - but there are "other ways to skin that cat" as they say!

A late model used car/truck which has been well maintained, carefully used - or even pampered, with relatively low miles, & possibly a used car/CPO warranty can be a far better bargain.

There are both dealer demos & executive cars which come on the market in about a year or when they reach 7-10,000 miles which must be sold as used - as well as 1-3 year old early trade-ins with low miles by buyers who want to change cars or just want a new one every year - which can be great bargains.

And when purchased from the same make dealer & checked out & pass their inspection, they can have a factory CPO Warranty (Certified Pre-Owned) which can be equal or better than a new warranty - but you need to check out each one's, since they do vary between makes.

For example, a new Porsche warranty is 48 months/50,000 miles, but their maximum CPO if done before the new warranty expires is 72 months (6 years0 & 100,000 miles. So it's feasible to find a 10=4 year old Porsche at 10-40,000 miles with a longer & more miles factory warranty - than new! Other makes are different, but this is an example with which I'm familiar due to our current used Cayenne S TV search.

You may have to search more for that perfect used TV or other used vehicle, than a new one - but then you may not be able to find the perfoect color & options new at a dealer or even special ordered.

Also, in 2015> many of the makers are down-sizing engines to meet the increasing CAFE fleet fuel mpg requirements, so many are replacing the V8s which many of us prefer for towing, with smaller turbo-V6's which will have to rev higher & more often under load.

So IMHO, buying a nice used one is the best option once your rental costs start to equal the "cost & feeding" & insurance of owning your own TV - unless a lease works for your business write-offs, or unless you want a special order & plan to keep it a long time.

You can also rent while you patiently look for that perfect - or nearly so - used TV.

Good Luck!
Tom T (janabanana48's other half )
Orange CA
1960 Avion T20, #2 made, Hensley Cub, TV tbd- looking for 08-14 Cayenne S
1988 VW Vanagon Westfalia CamperGL (Orig Owner)
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Old 03-14-2016, 11:37 AM   #14
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Lots of false notions on the above. I can only speak on Ford leases, as I have leased numerous Fords in the past 25 years. Most I bought at the end of the lease, but some I turned back to Ford. In one case, the residual purchase price was way more than what it was worth so I turned it back. In another case the actual value was way more than the residual so I bought it. In any case, if you buy at the end, you can have 200,000 miles on it and there is no penalty. Even if you are way over in miles and the penalty is high, just buy the truck and resell it, no penalty. For the first 3 years, no matter if you buy or lease, you are paying the depreciation. If you put down the minimum on a purchase, you will be upside down for many years. Better off to lease and then decide if you like the vehicle. Regardless, the Ford lease is a good deal even if you could pay cash.

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