So you lease a car, you're stuck paying for the car for the term you've agreed on, right? What if you want to get out of the lease? You find someone to take it over, if you can even do that. I see people advertising lease takeovers on FB Marketplace all the time. It seemed complicated and risky, at best.
Except that's not what you have to do.
I just left the Hyundai dealership with a cheque for cash-moneys and a piece of paper that says my lease is paid in full and I have no further obligations. I loved my blue Kona, but it turns out that, even though my partner needs a car for work, the actual amount he drives is not a lot. We could share a car quite comfortably. With the mortgage interest rate going up and up, just like it did again last week, it seemed time to cut costs where we could.
To start this whole thing, I googled "lease takeover" and found companies that just do this as their whole business model. So I figured it would be worth calling the dealership my partner dealt with and asking them what options they had for us getting out of one of our leases (both of us had Hyundais). They called back and offered $X for either low-mileage car. Same amount.
Okay. This was promising. I called the dealership I had dealt with and their offer was 3 times $X for my partner's because his is a hybrid. And a few hundred more than the original $X offer for mine.
On a roll now, I called the dealership I had dealt with and their offer was 3 times $X for either car. WHOA.
It took a few days and a brain-crunch into a spreadsheet to see that the cars would cost about the same to own and drive, so now it was down to preference. And the hybrid won because a) it drives a little nicer, b) it has better climate control and c) it's a freaking hybrid.
I called back the 2nd dealer, because the guy was the nicest of the three, and deserved the business, and I asked him if he could beat the 3rd dealer's offer on the non-hybrid. And he did. He doubled his original offer. I got the cheque an hour ago and it's done.
It helped that our mileage was super-low (the car I turned in had 19k driven over two years), and they were both in perfect shape. And it helped that I got ballsy and asked for what I wanted, once I realized I was allowed to want this.
That cheque now goes in the bank and helps us sleep at night in case interest rates go up any more (we have a variable rate mortgage). And we have a shared calendar so we can manage who needs the car on what day.
I deserve to order in tonight. What does a used-car mogul eat for dinner?