Confessions of a Compulsive Organizer

Which Is Better: Leasing Or Buying Your Copy Machine?

by Ricardo Hart

If you're tasked with the responsibility of acquiring your company's new copy machine, one of the first choices you'll have to make is whether or not to buy or lease. There are advantages and disadvantages to both. The more you understand about the differences between buying and leasing, the more capable you'll be of making the right decision for your company.

All About Leasing

In the case of a leased copy machine, the organization or business that's using the machine makes a monthly payment to the company that owns the machine. In return, the company that owns the machine maintains the machine and provides copy machine service for no extra fee.

Although leasing can be more expensive over time, there are many benefits to leasing that can help justify the added expense.

  • Leased machines can be switched for newer machines as soon as the lease ends.
  • There are no up front costs or down payments for leased machines.
  • The cost of the lease doesn't change for the life of the lease and most of the expenses associated with the machine are predictable.

All About Buying

Buying a copy machine is a lot like buying a car. Your organization or business can either pay for the entire machine up front, or your business can make a down payment on the copy machine and borrow the rest to be paid over a fixed amount of time. Advantages of buying a copy machine include:

  • The longer you keep the copy machine, the better deal it is (financially speaking). Even if you have to borrow some of the money, the interest rate is likely to be less than the cost of a lease.
  • If your organization owns the copy machine, you'll be using it for a very long time. You'll get to know all its quirks intimately. Leased machines are often switched out for new machines every couple years, which is not much time to get used to a new machine.

Still, there are some downsides to owning a copy machine. Your business or organization might be inclined to hang on to the copy machine for much longer than is reasonable when the machine is owned because it's cheaper. On the flip side, your company could potentially end up paying a lot to repair the machine as it begins to age and break down frequently.

Picking One

Budget-minded companies that don't plan to rely heavily on their copy machine service will benefit from buying. Companies that need the latest in copy machine technology and have a bigger budget to spend on the machine will benefit from leasing.

If you're still having a difficult time picking between leasing and buying, speak with a representative from the copy machine service company. He or she will be able to walk you through the process and help you decide which option is right for you.