Early Buyout Offer from Dealer

Hi all,
My first lease is about to end in 5 months, and today I got a call from the Kia dealer saying they wanted to buy out my lease early so they could add my car to their used inventory. Since this is my first lease I’m not sure if this is a dealer tactic or a legitimate offer. The Hyundai dealer for my wife’s car calls often asking her to trade in her Sonata, but there it’s pretty clear they want to sell us a new car. I’m not sure what the benefit is to the dealer to end my lease early, other than to lock me into a new 3+ year lease. Any advice? Thanks!

It depends.

If you have positive equity in your lease (market value of car is worth more than the payoff amount), then there’s not much harm in ending your lease early and starting a new one.

If you have negative equity, then the dealer will simply roll that amount into your new lease – in which case, it’s better keeping the car.

Some manufacturers, like Mercedes and BMW, offer pull-ahead programs in which you can genuinely end your lease early without penalty. I’m not aware of any from Kia, however.

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It is normal to get phone calls/mails from dealers. Once you get there they would try to sell you a new car as well, the fact is that the dealer does not make any money by buying your car at market price. They have to low ball you, I got similar calls from Mercedes Benz for my car and when I took it in they offered me $1500 less than carmax. I was very disappointed that the same dealer would sold me the car was not even offering me a fair price.

No harm paying them a visit, I would stop at carmax just to get an idea of what the realistic price is.

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Hi Michael,
My purchase option is $29K, Edmunds shows the retail value of the car is $23K. So it doesn’t seem like there is positive equity in the car. I’m still trying to figure out what the advantage is for the dealer to let me out of my lease early.

There is no benefit for them to buy your period, that is the reality. Just stop by carmax and pay a visit to the dealer. Please post your experience once you get back.

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If your car is worth 23k and the buyout is $29k, the dealer is looking to smoke you and make some money.

Don’t bother.

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