Buying vs. Leasing: What’s the Difference?

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If you've ever been car shopping, you've probably been faced with the eternal question: do I finance or lease this vehicle? While they may seem similar on the surface, there are many key differences. One of the main differences being the length of period in which you have the vehicle in your possession; leasing is often thought of as a "long-term" rental, whereas with financing, you own the car outright and pay the total cost in monthly installments until the full amount has been fulfilled.

But there is more to financing and leasing, and the experts at Patrick Volvo Cars have come up with an easy-to-follow guide on the two. If you are wrestling on which financial route to take while shopping for a new car, read below before making a decision.



As mentioned before, leasing is akin to a rental, but you have the car for a much longer, predetermined period of time (generally around 3 years, or between 24-36 months). The other main points to consider are:

  • Mileage restriction: In a lease, you are typically limited in how much mileage you are allowed to accrue on your vehicle (usually around 36,000 miles)
  • Flexible payment: Because you have the vehicle for a shorter period of time, you do not have to pay as much for as long, and monthly payments are often flexible depending on the vehicle you lease. Also, you often pay less in a down payment when compared to financing.
  • Access to the latest and greatest: Because a typical lease lasts for up to 3 years, you can drive around with the most cutting-edge features, and the latest amenities. Once the lease is up-should you choose not to buy your car outright-you can swap it out for the next new model.
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While leasing may seem right for some, it is not for everyone. That's where buying, or financing, comes in.

  • Own your car: With financing, you own your car outright. No need to trade in or get a new car every 2-3 years. You basically have it for as long as you like.
  • Customization: You also have the freedom to customize your car as you see fit, such as installing a new audio system, custom paint job, or any other accessory you see fit.
  • Depreciation consideration: While this affects leased vehicles as well, it is important to keep in mind the depreciated value of your car should you decide to sell it or trade it in at some point.
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Lease or Finance Your Next Car Today at Patrick Volvo Cars

Whichever path you choose, Patrick Volvo Cars team of financial experts are here to walk you through every step of both processes. Visit us in Schaumburg, or reach out for more details or to schedule an appointment.

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