For some people, a vehicle is a personal asset that can help you get to and from work, take you to errands, and give you the personal freedom to explore new places. For others, a vehicle is even more important. They purchase a semi-truck or trailer, or other commercial vehicles to start a business and generate revenue.
When you seek to acquire a vehicle, you’ll need to decide whether you want to lease it or purchase it (and own it henceforth). But which is the superior option?
Leasing vs. Owning
In case you aren’t familiar, purchasing and leasing are two different ways to gain access to a vehicle. In purchasing, you’ll pay a set amount of money for a vehicle; from that point forward, you’ll own it outright. You may borrow money to come up with the full funds, but the vehicle will be yours—and you’ll have the authority to use it how you like.
Leasing is an option available primarily for people who can’t (or don’t want to) make purchases. You’ll sign a lease agreement with the owner of the vehicle, then pay a flat monthly fee to continue using it. There may be rules and regulations for how you use the vehicle, but the owner will take responsibility for routine maintenance and certain types of issues. Typically, leases are long-term agreements, lasting in intervals of years.
The Perks of Ownership
Buying and owning a vehicle can be highly advantageous:
- Full ownership (and equity). Owning a vehicle allows you to build equity in it. If you take out a loan, your monthly payments will gradually pay off the principal you’ve borrowed. In other words, you’ll have a financial stake in the vehicle. This can add to your net worth over time (or right away if you purchase the vehicle in full).
- Freedom and flexibility. Owning the vehicle also means you won’t have to obey the rules and stipulations set by a lease; you’ll have the full freedom and flexibility to do anything you want with it. You can customize the vehicle to your liking, drive it as many miles as you want, and use it for practically any purpose.
- Less worry about wear and tear. In many lease agreements, the lessee will be responsible for taking care of many types of damage sustained to the vehicle, including basic wear and tear. If you own the vehicle, you won’t have to worry about it.
- Resale potential. In the future, if you decide you no longer want the vehicle or if you’re ready for a new purchase, you can sell the vehicle or trade it in—but only if you own it. This can help you recapture some of the costs of the vehicle.
The Perks of Leasing
However, there are also some benefits to leasing:
- Lower upfront costs. In a lease, you’ll usually have to pay something upfront—but the upfront costs of a lease are much lower. This is ideal if you’re dealing with limited cash.
- Lower monthly costs. In general, the monthly costs of a lease are lower than the monthly costs of ownership (assuming you take out a loan). This is because you won’t deal with extra costs, like interest.
- Fewer responsibilities. In a lease, you may not have to take responsibility for the vehicle’s ongoing maintenance; this care may be included in your agreement, as a responsibility of the owner.
- Future flexibility (sometimes). Some types of lease agreements afford you flexibility. At the end of the lease, you can renew the lease for another term, end the lease, or even transition to ownership.
Priorities to Consider
Buying isn’t strictly better than leasing, and vice versa. So how can you decide which is best for you?
- Ownership duration. Think about how long you’re going to own this vehicle. Is this a long-term or short-term investment?
- Need for customizability. How much do you want to customize the vehicle to your liking?
- Need for flexibility. How much flexibility do you need? For example, how many miles are you planning on driving, and would a lease agreement get in your way?
- Access to cash. How much cash do you have on hand, and how easily can you qualify for a loan?
- Monthly budget. What is your monthly budget for a vehicle? Would a lease or ownership arrangement be more favorable to your financial needs?
- Preferences for repairs and maintenance. How are you going to handle repairs and maintenance to the vehicle?
Buying and leasing are both viable options for vehicles, regardless of whether you want a personal vehicle or a commercial one. However, one will likely favor you and your situation better than the other. Consider your options carefully before making the final decision.
8 Things Every Adult Should Be Doing Regularly
Adulting means taking on more responsibilities. It means remembering to do things, even if they aren’t things we necessarily want to do. From filing taxes and investing to changing the car’s oil and cleaning gutters, adults have a lot to manage on a regular basis.
What do you need to do every day to keep your life on track? Curious to know how well you’re handling adulting? Here are eight things you should be doing regularly.
1. Go to the Doctor
When you were a little kid, your mom probably took you to the doctor. It wasn’t something that you had to remember to do. Now as an adult, things are a bit different. You have an entire list of doctors you have to visit each year. Just the idea of calling to make an appointment, requesting time off from work, and driving to the doctor’s office can be daunting.
Luckily, at-home services like telehealth and prescription delivery are becoming more and more common in today’s world. If you’re someone who doesn’t like going to the doctor, consider turning to online resources. For example, STI testing is something you can now do at home instead of visiting the doctor. Sexually transmitted infections are extremely common. While you shouldn’t feel embarrassed about going to the doctor, the convenience of at-home testing is nice to have.
2. Check Your Credit Score
There’s a myth that checking your credit score too often will negatively impact your score. This actually isn’t true at all. In fact, checking your credit score regularly is a good way to stay on top of your finances. Checking your score helps you ensure that it’s accurate so you can see where you stand financially.
When you check your credit score, pay close attention. First, you should obviously check the score itself. If it’s increased since you last checked, keep up the good work. If it’s decreased, you may have to tighten your budget to start paying off debt. Also look at your alerts and total account balances, as well as the status of any open accounts. You can also go a step further and check your full credit report to take note of any unusual activity on your accounts.
3. Exercise Regularly
It’s important for every adult to exercise regularly, even if you’re just going for a short walk around the neighborhood. Staying active will not only keep you healthy, but it can improve your overall mental state as well. Try to be active every single day or at least a few times a week.
Find a type of exercise that you actually like doing to keep you motivated. For example, some people may prefer weight lifting and high intensity interval training (HIIT workouts). Others may prefer cardio like running or biking. Or, maybe workout classes are your favorite way to stay in shape. Whatever your preference may be, just make sure it’s part of your regular routine.
4. Drink Enough Water and Eat Right
As an adult, it’s critical that you drink plenty of water every day. According to the U.S. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, women should drink 2.7 liters of water per day. Men should be drinking 3.7 liters. A large percentage of your body is made up of water. Not only do our bodies depend on it to survive, but it also has numerous other benefits like giving you clearer skin.
Eating right is also important. No, you don’t have to be on a strict diet. But you should consume whole foods that are good for your body on a regular basis. Make sure you’re eating enough fruits and vegetables. Fuel your body with vitamins and minerals through the foods that you eat. Healthy foods provide higher energy levels so you can power through your day. Make sure you’re paying attention to what you put into your body.
5. Get Plenty of Sleep
Don’t get so busy that you forget to rest. Getting good rest seems like such an obvious thing to do, yet so many adults don’t sleep enough. You should be getting a restful seven to eight hours of sleep each night. Doing so will help to improve your physical health, mental health, and quality of life.
If you’re having trouble sleeping at night, there are a few things you can do. Consult your doctor if you think something serious may be going on. Otherwise, download an anxiety app to help calm you in the hours leading up to bedtime. You can also try small doses of melatonin when you can’t seem to get some shut eye.
6. Clean and Declutter
If your living space is a mess, you’ll feel like a mess, too. So be sure to clean and declutter your living space(s) regularly. Whether it’s your closet, your car, or a room in your house that needs a makeover, get to cleaning. You’ll be happy that you did.
To make cleaning easier, put yourself on a schedule. Make it your goal to clean, declutter, or reorganize one space per month. Even if it’s something small like your desk, the simple act of decluttering and organizing helps your mood and outlook. It’ll make you feel like you have a fresh start with as few distractions and stressors around you as possible.
7. Check in on the People You Love
By the time you reach your adult years, you’ll come to the realization that life is very short. Years go by quickly, and tomorrow isn’t always promised. As we get older, we also grow to appreciate our relationships more. A lot of people will grow closer to their parents or find their forever friends. Whoever your people are, be sure to hold onto them and never stop loving them.
Call your best friend regularly. Do something nice for your mom to show her how much you care. Whoever that important person is in your life, don’t forget to keep showing up for them. Reaching out benefits them and it will make you much happier, too.
8. Take Time for Yourself
Let’s face it—being an adult is hard. It can be exhausting, stressful, and just all-around tough at times. That’s why it’s so important to take care of yourself. Don’t be afraid to claim some time that is just for you so you can do some self-care. Whether you take a walk, schedule a massage, or order out instead of cooking, it’s a good thing to care for yourself.
Take that mental health day to rest and recharge. Treat yourself to a self-care day. Do the little things that make you happy often so you don’t overload on stress. If you’re already trying to get your life together, that’s the last thing you want. There’s absolutely no shame in taking a step back and re-focusing every so often.
Are you doing most of the things on this list regularly? If not, it may be time to get serious. Whether you’re getting (or keeping) your act together, make sure you’re taking care of the important things on a regular basis.
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