Financial Resource Center


Should I Purchase or Lease?

March 19th, 2021

The question of whether to buy or lease a car can hinge more on how you’ll use the vehicle, and for how long, than on what the monthly cost will be.

That’s not to say the money doesn’t matter. With the average price of a new car around $37,000, financing—through an auto loan or a lease—is likely. Lately, consumers acquire about a third of all new cars through leases.

Talk to the people at your credit union about leasing and loan options. You may find that the credit union has a loan with all the features you’re looking for in a lease. And use this calculator to help you compare your lease vs. borrowing options. (Remember to factor in the cost to purchase the vehicle at the end of the lease. That typically brings your total lease-to-own cost higher than the purchase-to-own cost.)


Use only numerals and decimal points in your input.


Negotiated purchase price


State sales tax rate


Vehicle age in years (0 = new)


Cash rebate


Down payment


Other upfront costs


Loan term (months)


Interest rate


Years you will own vehicle


Lease term (months)


Monthly payment


Security deposit


Cash paid


Cash rebate




Provision of this calculator is not an offer of credit. Its use in no way guarantees that credit will be granted. This calculator is solely for informational purposes and provides reasonably accurate estimates; the calculations are not intended to be relied upon as actual loan computations.


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