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I've never leased a car before, but I felt I couldn't trust myself to buy the Ti Sport outright. Somehow, it felt better to me that the dealership was owning the car, and I was driving it. Now, however, after almost a year of issue-free driving, I'm kicking myself! I'm not sure that I know enough about how these deals work, though, so any insight is appreciated:
1) I paid a down-payment ($2k)
2) I'm paying a monthly lease ($640)
3) At the end of the 36 mon lease, projected residual is $21k.
4) I am planning on buying my own off-lease vehicle.
5) Is this reasonable? My biggest challenge is keeping the wife away from the car- she'c drive 5x mileage that I have planned. If I return the car to the dealer with lower than negotiated miles, I'm out in the cold, right? 5a) If I reach my agreed-upon mileage, what does the final payment consist of?
 

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If you have less than agreed on miles, and you buy the car at $21k vs an actual value of $23-25k (because of either generally higher than projected value and less miles) then you "win" if you want to buy the car because now it's "discounted" over if you tried to buy a similar car off the used car lot. However it means you overpaid the lease, which doesn't matter if you plan to buy the car, but hurts in theory if looking to get into another lease

If the actual value of the car is less than $21k at the end of the lease, and more like $18k irregardless of less miles. Then it is wise to dump the car and get another lease or buy a different car at a lower price, that's when leasing "wins" because of the fact that if you had owned the vehicle and looked to sell it, you'd be out more money.

However if the miles is over the allotted value, you'll need to pay a mileage penalty (typically $0.20 - $0.25 a mile), and then the disposition fee of $395 at the end of the lease. Not sure how it plays out if you buy the vehicle outright, I imagine the mileage penalty still applies because if it didn't people would lease left and right and just buy at the end when they have 100k miles over the agreed 30k. However the disposition fee might be waived.
 
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