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Can You Lease a Car If you are Under 25?

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Whether a young driver has reached 18 years old, or a new driver has just passed their driving test, many of these drivers are now using car leasing as a way to drive a new vehicle, fitted with the latest safety and in-car technology.  In fact, statistics from Experian suggest that at least 20% of 18-24-year-olds now lease a vehicle.

Here at Fleet UK, we offer brand-new or nearly-new vehicles which means that new or young drivers benefit from a car that is under warranty and has all the desirable creature comforts and in-car technology a young person would need. 

Leasing is sometimes referred to as Personal Car Leasing, or Personal Contract Hire (PCH) and is effectively a form of long-term renting.  After a small initial payment, low and affordable fixed monthly payments are made for a predetermined amount of time.  At the end of the contract, you hand the car back and then search for another car.  The typical contract length is around two to four years.

With its affordable monthly payments, low initial rental and flexible contract terms, leasing can be a cost-effective method to get behind the wheel of a brand new car.  However, as a new or young driver, is car leasing right for you?

We have put together the following guide to help answer as many questions about car leasing which young drivers may have.

Is car leasing right for you?

A car lease is a type of vehicle finance that allows you to hire a new car for a chosen period of time by paying uniform monthly payments. During the contract length, you will be responsible for the car’s maintenance, running costs and insurance, but you will never own it. 

This means you get the joys of driving a brand new car without having to buy it.  Since a lease agreement is a financial contract, you do need to be at least 18 years of age.  In addition, you will also need a full valid UK driving license and will have to undergo a credit check to prove you can afford to pay the monthly payments as dictated by your contract.

If you are currently under the age of 18, you will need to wait before you can lease your first vehicle. However, you can use this time before you turn 18 to identify your dream car with Fleet UK's manufacturer, price and budget searches and to start building your credit score to ensure you pass the credit check.

Before you decide whether car leasing is right for you, consider the following questions:

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Before making any major purchasing decision, it's good to make a list of all the pros and cons for all of the available options, as this will help you make an informed and considered final decision that meets your individual needs.

What are the benefits of car leasing for a new driver?

With a fifth of new and young drivers turning to car leasing, we have put together this video to emphasise the benefits of leasing.

What are the disadvantages of car leasing for a new driver?

While car leasing offers many advantages, it is not a suitable product for everyone. As with any type of finance contract, there are many pros and cons to consider. Potential disadvantages include:

  • You won't own the vehicle - at the end of the contract you hand it back to the finance provider
  • You cannot customise the vehicle - some small modifications might be permitted but check with the finance provider before proceeding to make any customisation to the vehicle
  • Insurance isn't included in the cost - you have to arrange your car insurance separately and the finance provider will want to ensure you have full comprehensive insurance
  • You need to keep within the 'fair wear and tear' guidelines - Failure to return the vehicle in a condition that meets BVRLA standards and you could incur an excess damage penalty charge. For more info please see here
  • You must have a good credit rating - most finance providers will ask for a good to excellent credit score to approve your credit application
  • You must stick within the agreed mileage - if you exceed the amount of mileage which was agreed at the outset of the contract you could incur an 'excess mileage' charge - please see here for more details
  • Early termination can be expensive - if you need to exit the contract earlier than the agreed contract period, this will be subject to early termination penalty fees, which can be anything around 50% of outstanding rental amounts

Are there any age restrictions when leasing a car?

You need to be 18 years old or more, own a full UK driving licence and be able to afford the monthly rentals before you can apply for a lease agreement with one of our finance providers. 

There is no upper age limit. Unfortunately, we are unable to offer lease agreements to drivers under the age of 18. This is because a lease agreement is a form of credit and a person under 18 is considered a young person and therefore cannot usually be legally held to a contract.

Can my parent be a guarantor?

If you’re young and have little or no credit history, then your credit agreement may not be approved by the finance provider.

However, that doesn’t mean you can’t get a lease deal and in this situation, it might be possible to use a guarantor. A guarantor is someone who acts as a safety net and is legally bound to take on your payments should you be unable to make them.

The most common form of guarantor is a parent or family member, but in reality, anyone aged over 21 with a good credit score can act as a guarantor providing they aren’t linked to you financially i.e. a spouse.

The most common form of a guarantor is a parent or family member, but in reality, anyone aged over 21 with a good credit score can act as a guarantor providing they aren’t linked to you financially i.e. a spouse.

Before undertaking a contract with a guarantor, make sure you both understand the risks involved.

If you have any questions about car leasing, please call us on 02392 245572 to speak to one of our experienced and friendly account managers.

Need some inspiration for which cars are the best to lease for young or new drivers, visit our Top 10 Best Cars For New Or Young Drivers To Lease guide'.

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