What's the Cost?
Of course, these lease sites charge a fee. Additionally, leasing companies charge a range of fees for the lease transfer. The person assuming the lease bears the bulk of the costs. Despite these expenses, the total cost is much less than early termination fees and penalties.
Take for example Keith Begin of St. Petersburg, Florida. On LeaseTrader, he found a large SUV with 19,000 miles and 19 months left on the lease for only $322 per month. It cost him a total of about $750 to assume ownership of the car, which was located just three hours away. He thought it was a great deal.
"Somebody else had to put down the $2,000-$3,000 [in down payment]," Begin said, "and my commitment was a lot less than it would have been if I'd gone through a dealer."
Sharon Covington of Long Beach, California, was only five months into a three-year lease on a Chevy Tahoe when her circumstances suddenly changed and she needed to get out of her lease. She tried to trade in the vehicle.
"It was outrageous what I would have had to pay: $10,000-$15,000 just to pay off the lease," she said. Covington discovered LeaseTrader.com and, within days, found someone to take over her $550 monthly payments. The whole transaction cost her $250.
"It was completely seamless for me," she said. "I was shocked beyond belief."