Are you not comfortable with the legalese contained in a copier lease agreement? If you are not an attorney or if you do not have experience securing a copier for your company, an office copier lease might be an intimidating document.
Here are some of the challenges facing you as you look into a copier lease:
Navigating a copier lease agreement without sinking
A lot of businesses enter into a copier lease agreement to avoid shelling out thousands of dollars upfront to buy a high-end multifunction copier. By signing a copier lease agreement, you will pay a monthly or even a quarterly fee for your copier over the life of a lease, which is commonly three to five years in duration.
When you look at proposals from copier leasing companies, you must know your copier needs. You can start with the needs assessment, so you won’t fall for a high-pressure pitch that sticks you with more copiers than you need and an expensive monthly lease bill. You can also avoid copier lease overkill by assessing how many copies you make in a month and it should be done accurately. If you make 20,000 monthly, do not lease a copier that produces 200,000 copies monthly. Do not pay for volume that you do not need. The same goes for other features. You can talk to your co-workers to check what copier features you all need.
Understand the lease terms before meeting with leasing companies
Understanding all of the lease terms is important to securing a fair copier lease agreement. By understanding copier lease agreement terms, you will be able to compare copier lease rates and what the copier leasing companies are giving you for your monthly fee.
Give pause for these clauses.
These are the following clauses that you need to watch out for:
An automatic contract continuation is not unusual in a copier lease agreement and they are a lessee’s nightmare. When your lease is fast approaching its expiration date, you need to notify the financing company of your intention to return the copier.
If you do not send the lender a notice or letter of intent to return the copier in the specified time frame that is contained in your copier lease agreement, you may face an automatic 12-month renewal. The renewal means that a year of payments for your copier that you may no longer need. If your service contract and your lease are combined, you will be paying for service as well. You should have a service contract separate from your lease. Also, make sure that you post a warning on your calendar for the expiration date and immediately take action.
$1 Buyout option.
There are times wherein lenders allow you to buy the copier for $1 at the end of the lease. The buyout may sound like a good option in your copier lease agreement, but it could be costing you money on your monthly lease payment. It may be more prudent to agree to smaller payments and to decide at the end of the lease whether you want to buy the copier. Deciding at lease’s end will give you the benefit of knowing the condition of the copier and whether your copying needs have changed.
You need to check your copier lease agreement for any insurance surcharges. Some lenders require you to lease equipment that has insurance protection. You can avoid an insurance surcharge if you can show the lender that your office insurance policy covers copiers.
Choose your vendor carefully to avoid expensive surprises
Check if your vendor is helpful and if they explain lease terms so you know what you are signing. Check if they have your back by making sure that you are not stuck with lease terms that are not in your best interest.