business Should You Lease or Buy Your Tech Equipment?

Buy vs lease equipment

You further assume that your cost of capital is 6 percent (the 10 percent financing rate adjusted by your tax rate). When it comes to choosing between leasing and buying, you need to determine if you’d rather focus on business growth or profit. If you think the equipment will be functional and last for many years, consider making the move to purchase it.

Second, there are a number of cost analysis tools and methods you can use to evaluate the lease vs. buy question in detail. Excedr’s monthly payments remain affordably fixed throughout your lease term and can typically be customized based on the needs of your lab (cash flow, budgeting, grant cycles, or any seasonal fluctuations). The primary difference between buying and leasing equipment is that with the former, you own the asset until you sell or dispose of it. Instead, you rent equipment without owning it and pay a monthly fee (typically with interest) to use it.

The High Cost of Construction Equipment Theft

If your company doesn’t have the ability to keep equipment properly maintained and serviced then you should probably consider renting or an operating lease for your equipment needs. First, determine what you need to buy or rent, then check the latest price results to get a sense of the price of used equipment. Buy vs lease equipment Check with your local rental store to determine rental and delivery costs. When you purchase IT equipment, you can deduct its full cost in the first year. You can even save money when taxes are due over depreciation deductions. If your business needs tailor-made equipment, leasing may not be the best route.

Buy vs lease equipment

Renting construction equipment offers the greatest amount of flexibility. Most rental companies offer daily, weekly and monthly rates so you don’t have to pay for equipment that you aren’t actively using. It also frees you from having to bother with maintenance and upkeep, costly repairs and rented equipment can be written off as a business expense. It’s also important to estimate the cost of equipment ownership versus the cost of renting equipment. With ownership comes maintenance and operating costs, insurance and other fees such as government licensing, and those costs obviously vary from machine to machine.

Equipment Financing Lets You Afford the Equipment

But, this also means you’ll have less available cash on hand to cover other costs. Section 179 of the Internal Revenue Code allows you to fully deduct the cost of some newly purchased assets in the first year. In 2012 and 2013, you can deduct up to $500,000 of equipment (subject to a phase-out if you placed more than $2,000,000 of equipment in service in any one year). For example, if you are in the 25% tax bracket and you purchase $100,000 in business equipment this year, the net cost to you is only $75,000.

  • Then, contact the Gordon Flesch Company’s team of experts to talk through your leasing options.
  • And some equipment, like computers, may become obsolete more quickly than others.
  • Keep this in mind while going through your books and determining whether you have the necessary cash available to justify an expensive upfront commitment.
  • Using financing to purchase assets allows for the interest to be deducted as an expense but not the total price.
  • Another valuable yet often overlooked benefit is that your team no longer has to spend time planning and managing maintenance, allowing your scientists and managers to focus on more critical matters.

Plus, you might have loan terms that require monthly payments and/or accrue interest. Although ownership is perhaps the biggest advantage to buying business equipment, it can also be a disadvantage. If you purchase high-tech equipment, you run the risk that the equipment may become technologically obsolete, and you may be forced to reinvest in new equipment long before you had planned to. A computer system that costs $5,000 today, for instance, may be worth only $1,000 or less three years from now. Leases are usually easier to obtain and have more flexible terms than loans for buying equipment. This can be a significant advantage if you have bad credit or need to negotiate a longer payment plan to lower your costs.

Wherever there are pros, there are also cons. Here’s what to be aware of when considering buying equipment.

Smith & Howard Advisory, LLC and its subsidiary entities are not licensed CPA firms. The entities falling under the Smith & Howard brand are independently owned and are not liable for the services provided by any other entity providing services under the Smith & Howard brand. Our use of the terms “our firm” and “we” and “us” and terms of similar import, denote the alternative practice structure conducted by Smith & Howard PC and Smith & Howard Advisory LLC. You also need to take into account the availability of the equipment and plan ahead to ensure that the rental company can accommodate your needs and have the equipment available when you need it to avoid downtime. Fuel is a cost that is common to both owning and renting and needs to be considered for both.

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With a lease, on the other hand, you relinquish ownership at the end of the lease and can turn around and lease the latest version of the equipment. We’ll cover both leasing and buying equipment in this article to help you make the right decision about whether to lease vs buy equipment for your business. This analysis assumes the financed purchase of a $50,000 piece of equipment for 25 percent down, interest at 10 percent, and four annual payments of $11,830 (all payments are made on the last day of the year). A case study analysis of leasing business equipment compared to purchasing the same equipment. On the flip side, if you don’t have a ton of extra capital on hand, it’s typically best to lease the equipment (at least for the time being). Leasing allows you to keep what capital you have in case you need it for other reasons (e.g., emergency repairs).

Disadvantage of leasing

The two primary options available are to lease the equipment or to purchase it. Working with a leasing company like Excedr can reduce these upfront costs by an average of 95%+ to minimize any financial strain that impedes the progress of your research and offers competitive interest rates. That said, while leasing might be more costly over the equipment’s lifespan than outright buying, it is frequently a more cost-effective solution.

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If it is unlikely to become obsolete or unrepairable, a loan allows you to own the equipment outright. If you don’t qualify for a low-interest equipment loan, you may find other alternatives like cash flow loans, merchant cash advance loans, or invoice financing to cover the expense. If it’s a lower-cost piece of equipment, even business credit cards are an option to consider. Get your free business credit scores with Nav and monitor your business credit report to know what kind of financing you will qualify for.

Currently, as long as an agreement doesn’t meet the criteria of a capital lease, equipment lease payments are considered operating expenses and don’t appear on balance sheets. The new standard would require businesses to list leased equipment as assets and lease payments as liabilities on their books. Including long-term lease commitments as liabilities can potentially reduce a company’s working capital and negatively affect its debt-to-equity ratio, thus potentially affecting its bonding capacity. According to the Equipment Leasing & Financing Foundation, almost 8 out of 10 companies in the U.S (79%) use some form of financing to acquire equipment. If you don’t need to frequently update your IT equipment and you want to keep the assets for a long time, you can opt for purchasing.

Additionally, the business becomes responsible for the maintenance and repairs of the purchased vehicles or equipment. The primary advantage of leasing business equipment is that it allows you to acquire assets with minimal initial expenditures. Because equipment leases rarely require a down payment, you can obtain the goods you need without significantly affecting your cash flow. One of the downsides of renting is that the cost to rent is typically higher than a lease or loan payment. In addition, you need to take a look at the rental rates for the amount of time you plan on using the equipment to make the most cost-effective decision. Looking at a local rental company I found that if you are renting daily you end up paying more once you hit the three-day mark than if you had just rented for the entire week.

Be sure to factor in tax breaks and resale value when making this calculation. You are obligated to make payments for the entire lease period even if you stop using the equipment. Some leases give you the option to cancel the lease if your business changes direction and the equipment you leased is no longer necessary, but large early termination fees always apply. Historically, the primary advantage of buying over leasing equipment has been that you’re free to use the assets as you see fit. But an advantage that has now come to the forefront is that Section 179 expensing and first-year bonus depreciation. Both of these tax breaks can provide big tax in the first year after placing an asset in service.

Lease, Don’t Buy, Capital Equipment

Keep this in mind while going through your books and determining whether you have the necessary cash available to justify an expensive upfront commitment. You may also need to depreciate the asset per the IRS MACRS chart, which can be lengthy, depending on the asset type, your company’s tax situation, and current regulations. You may only have a few years of financial history, or your financial history may not meet the bank’s strict standards. Leasing can present a more viable option if your company is less established or already using most of its credit capacity. This becomes even more critical when financial markets become tight, and you need to have a cushion of cash on hand for unforeseen opportunities or emergencies.

If the job extends for another two months, you have the machine at your disposal. If the job ends and you decide you don’t need it, we can help, you sell it again at another upcoming auction and recoup some of your investment. The frequency of our unreserved auctions in different locations gives you a great ability to control your inventory, and even profit from equipment you don’t need anymore.