CarTalk.com Best of Deals Car Reviews Repair Shops Cars A-Z Radio Show

Swap a Lease

We need a 3rd car in the family (for daughter, commuting to college); not interested in new (due to expense) but don’t want used due to warranty, etc. Looking for possibly a SUV (safety) and considering taking over someone’s lease as a more economical way to get a car. Has anyone worked with Swap a Lease before? I spoke to a rep on the phone and seems like a good (and legitimate) way to go… Any advice is appreciated!

How many miles is the commute?
If you drive less than 12k per year, then it might work out, but you just never know. Also, look closely at the ads on that site, you might have a 2 year lease but only have 500 miles to go before they start charging you for the extra miles over the lease limit.

Also, in several instances, buying a new vehicle is cheaper than buying a 2 or 3 year old used car. A good vehicle to look at right now would be the Ford Escape. If you can find a left over, but still new, 2012 model, then you might be able to get a really good deal on it since the Escape got redesigned for 2013.

but don’t want used due to warranty, etc. ???

If you’re concerned about money/economics, getting into a lease is going to be the worst route for you. Leasing an SUV, even for “safety” is also not going to be in your best interests. SUVs are going to drink more gas than a small car, as an example. The cost of gas is going to be a concern for most college students.

College kids may want a nice, expensive vehicle, but really all they need is something to reliably get them from A to B, home to class, etc. This is why most campus parking lots are full of older Civics, etc.

I’d strongly advise against going the lease route, especially given your listed criteria/concerns. Good luck.

@Carlie - You’re doing the OPPOSITE of what I’ve done. New car for a kid in college…NO WAY NO HOW. My daughter got my then 310k miles Pathfinder her last two years of college. She kept it until she started graduate school. My Son who’s now coming back to the East Coast for his last two years of college won’t get a car…doesn’t need one. My youngest will be starting college a couple years…and he might get my 4runner when it has about 270k miles…Depends on where he goes to college. My middle son is going to school in Boston…and doesn’t really need one. My youngest is looking at Dartmouth…he might need one up there…but we’ll wait and see.

Buy your kid a decent cheap car. It makes no sense in buying them a new car.

And leasing is by far the WORSE financially decision you can make.