If you have a car on finance, make sure you don’t swerve these handy tips that’ll prevent any unwanted surprises when it comes to handing the keys back.
First things first: when you’re about to lease a vehicle don’t underestimate how many miles you’re going to clock up. If you’ve recently got a new job that has doubled your commute, say, then that obviously needs taking into account. Do the sums rather than sticking a finger in the air.
Look after your car properly, with a minimum annual servicing by the dealer, to minimise its depreciation. Remember to make sure your service book is correctly stamped.
Keep your car in good nick by regularly getting under the bonnet – especially before visiting the in-laws in Northumberland and heading down to that campsite in Westward Ho! – to ensure the oil, window washer fluid, brake fluid and coolant are okay. And top them all up before returning your vehicle.
Take time two or three months before you’re due to hand it back to give your car a good going-over.
Things to consider in particular include dents and deep scratches on the bodywork and bumpers, cracks or stars in the windows, damage to the wheels. Have a close look at the tyres for excessive wear too. And if you’ve used decals to promote your business make sure there’s no damage to the paintwork after you’ve taken them off.
Then there’s the upholstery – a valet should take care of any stains and getting your vehicle looking as good as new.
Check the BVRLA standard
Leasing companies have to abide by the BVRLA (British Vehicle Rental & Leasing Association) standard when inspecting cars returned by customers. Get a copy from Whittle Hall Finance so that you can compare your vehicle to what wear and tear is considered acceptable.
Give back what you got
You’ll be expected to return everything you were given with the vehicle: so remember the second set of keys, original floor mats and wheel caps, headrests that were removed when baby seats were fitted, and documents such as the owner’s manual and service history.