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I am at the end of my lease, and considering buying it out. The residual price is $14000. I offered $12000. The dealer told me he can't negotiate the residual price because the car belongs to the bank, not the dealership. He explained, he would have to buy it from the bank and then sell it to me, and he could not sell it at a loss because he would have to answer to board members/partners.

Is this really how it works? I can't negotiate my buyout price? It's a 2012 Kia Optima EX with 36,785 miles.

I want to buy it but not at their price. $2000 separates us.

Please advise. Thank you all.

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    Negotiating the initial price of the car, before you sign a lease, is the important thing to do. Once you've signed the lease, you have no negotiating power (even if they could sell it to you at a different price). – Rake36 Mar 31 '15 at 16:05
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    You can't negotiate a price you've already agreed to. The buyout price is in the lease, which you signed. – Jesse Mar 31 '15 at 17:11
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    Are these prior comments really correct? It's true the residual is contractual at the time the lease is signed, but that doesn't mean you can't discuss a different price at the end of the lease. It just means you have less, or different, leverage. The dealer could always agree to a different price if it made sense to him. Under what circumstances could it make sense? – davidbak Jun 14 '16 at 23:09
  • No, they are not. You agreed to a price for the takeout - which the bank is bound to. If you walk away, that means they give you THAT for the car. If the car is worth less, they can insist on that (and not sell it), or take a loss (and as well sell it to you then). The market value - which they can sell for on the open market - is not determined by the lease agreement. – TomTom Sep 17 '18 at 10:00
  • @Jesse My understanding was the buyout at the end of a car lease was an option, not a mandatory contract. I see absolutely no reason the OP cannot say they dont wish to buy the car under the terms of the lease but offer to buy it under different terms. Am I missing something? – Vality May 20 at 21:58
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Yes, it is negotiable, particularly if your residual price is significantly higher than the market price - after all, you can just walk away and the nbuy a similar car at a dealership for less.

In your example, if everyone offers 12k for the car - what you think the bank will do? At some point they have to eat the loss and get rid of the car. The car will not go up in value just standing on a lot.

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