I live in Washington state and want to lease a car from Subaru. I work for Microsoft, have decent income and good credit score (~718). I'm in US for a bit more that 1 year on an H-1B visa and I'm in a process of getting the green card.
Many of my colleagues who arrived much later got car financing (like 5-year 0% APR from Nissan) and some got mortgages.
When I went to a dealer to lease a car, the car maker's bank asked for lots of documents including my visa approval forms (I-797). Then they wanted a letter from Microsoft, stating that guarantee they will renew my visa once it expires. I got that letter too. In the end, they told the dealer that they would not accept form I-797B need form I-797A. Those forms are the same and are mutually exclusive. The only differ by the place where the person applied for the H-1B visa (A for applying from inside US and B for applying from outside). The only way for me to get the I-797A instead of I-797B would have been to lie to the consulate, get a non-immigrant visa (tourist B1 or student F1) and then apply for the H-1B after I enter the US.
In the end, the Subaru financing did not bulge and refused to lease me a car even if I paid the full amount outright.
What's wrong with the auto financing?
I could buy the full car outright with cash. I could pay for the full lease outright. I have credit cards from the same Chase bank, that Subaru uses, that would allow me to buy the full car outright. Banks are willing to give $700,000 mortgages to people on visa who've been in US for less than a year. Yet, they refuse me something as small as car lease.
Is there any rational explanation for why car leases are so special?
Is there any way to work around this?