How Does A Swap Lease Work?

A lease swap is a popular, effective way to get out of a lease deal. It is also the best way to get into short-term car ownership. A lease swap is usually a great deal for the seller and buyer, with a better return on the investment and a few requirements. The sellers do not have to pay early termination fees, and the buyers do not have to pay high depreciation fees for a car they need for a short term. You also do not have to meet the strict dealership requirements to qualify for a lease swap.

Nevertheless, a lease swap has a few drawbacks that you must understand before starting a lease transfer. Although a lease transfer is an affordable way to solve a short-term car need, you need to note that you will inherit the original lease terms. You will also get stuck with the vehicle’s condition and mileage. We look at how does a swap lease work and guide you on how to find a good lease transfer deal.

How Does A Swap Lease Work?

A lease swap is the transfer of a lease contract from one individual to another. The new lessee may need to meet all the dealer’s minimum requirements and assume full responsibility for the lessee. It is a preferable alternative to ending a lease, which might attract hefty termination fees. Transferring a lease makes sense as it is less expensive and you can easily find people willing to take over the contract. If your financial situation has changed and you can no longer afford your lease, a lease swap offers a quick way to get out of the contract without attracting an early termination fee.

Nevertheless, we recommend that you check with your leasing company to ensure that you can transfer your lease. Some companies do not allow a lease transfer at all, while others will not accept a lease swap near the end of your contract. We advise that you research how does a swap lease work for your dealer and your responsibilities after the transfer. Some dealers maintain your records in the new contract, which means you are responsible if the new lesser does not make payment.

Steps On How To Swap A Lease

  • Step 1: Review your contract – Go through your leasing contract to ensure that it supports lease transfer. If you cannot find the details on your leasing terms and conditions, we recommend that you contact your dealership and enquire about a lease transfer. Familiarize yourself with the lease transfer rules before you start the swap process. Do not transfer a lease without notifying your dealer, as you may get stuck with the responsibility for the lease if something goes wrong with the new lessee. Ask about the transfer fees if it is possible to swap the contract.
  • Step 2: Advertise your lease offer – You can ask friends and relatives if they would like to take over your lease deal. You may also list your car on the lease swap websites like the leasetrader or swapalease. The lease swap websites bring sellers and buyers together for a quick transfer. They also have put in place guidelines for effortless transfer.
  • Step 3: Choose the best applicant – Since you are likely to get multiple applications, you should carefully review the applicants to find the best person for a swap. The dealership will likely require the individual to meet the minimum requirements, including credit score and financial stability.
  • Step 4: Complete the process – Once you find the right candidate for a lease swap, you should complete the transfer paperwork and finalize the deal. You will need to pay the transfer fee, and the new lessee will change the car documentation and pay related fees.

Why Sell A Car Through A Lease Swap?

People lease a vehicle intending to keep the car for the duration of the lease contract. Unfortunately, anything can happen midway and make it difficult to pay for the lease. Financial situations like job loss can make a person swap a lease. You may also need to change your vehicle mid-lease if it no longer meets your needs. Therefore, a car lease swap is a good option for drivers who cannot afford to get stuck with a vehicle they cannot use.

Why Buy A Vehicle Through A Lease Swap?

Lease swap deals offer better value, making them ideal for people who cannot afford a new lease. Some leaseholders offer incentives to entice buyers, which can result in a real bargain. Furthermore, lease swap deals do not require a down payment, which makes them attractive to individuals with no savings. A lease swap further makes sense if you are looking for short-term car ownership with affordable monthly payments. Since most lease swaps occur in the last year, they are attractive to individuals looking for an affordable alternative to car hire.

Things You Should Consider Before A Lease Swap

Buying a lease swap is a bit complicated as it requires you to carry thorough research and evaluate a lease contract before completing the deal. A lease transfer involves a used car with the dealer’s terms for a new car, which can add complications to the deal. You can buy a vehicle that is not useful if you are not careful. It is essential you understand how does a lease swap work and things that you should look out for to help you get a better deal. Some of the things you should consider before a lease swap include:

  • Mileage limit – Every new lease deal comes with a mileage limit that the leaseholder should not surpass during the contract duration. Surpassing the mileage can attract hefty fees when you return the vehicle to the dealer. Some people can be mischievous and sell the car when they are about to surpass the mileage limit. Always find out the dealer’s mileage limit and the miles the leaseholder has used to determine miles you can cruise before reaching the limit. The goal is to find out if you are likely to surpass the mileage limit by the time you return the vehicle.
  • Car’s condition – Since you are buying a used car, it is necessary to look at the vehicle’s condition before you sign the swap documents. Dealerships expect you to return the vehicle in an acceptable condition at the lease end. Excess wear and damage will attract hefty fees that can make your lease swap more expensive. Thoroughly check the condition of the car to ensure it is in an acceptable state. Ask the leaseholder about the maintenance and repair records to ensure that the vehicle is in good condition. Avoid cars with poor maintenance records as they are more likely to fail and result in expensive repairs.
  • Vehicle’s value – Car leases offer leaseholders an opportunity to purchase the vehicle at the lease end at a predetermined amount. Carry out market research to determine the vehicle’s value and compare it with the buyout clause if you would like to purchase the vehicle at the lease-end. Look for models that retain their value over the years for a better deal.
  • Lease limitations – Review the lease terms and conditions for limitations and potential penalties. You do not need to buy a lease that comes with many limitations. Some dealerships require the new leaseholder to keep the car for a specified period, while others only allow one lease swap. You may also find leases with high turn-in fees as you return the vehicle.  

Which Are The Best Lease Swap Websites?

Now that you understand how does a swap lease work, we look at helpful lease trading websites that make it easy to swap a lease. The best lease trading websites that make it possible to sell or buy a short term lease include:

  1. Swapalease – Swapalease is a lease trading marketplace that connects sellers with buyers looking to take over a lease. The website has a straightforward registration process and offers customer support. However, you will have to pay to list or buy a car at the site. Swapalease has a one-time $59.95 registration fee for buyers that is active until you successfully find a lease match. Sellers can choose between three packages of $74.95 for a one photo ad, $199.95 for a 12 photos ad, and $299.95 for a 36 photos advert.
  2. Leasetrader – Leasetrader is a popular online forum that brings together lease swap sellers and buyers in the US and Canada. The site screens out buyers to ensure that you are only dealing with credit-worthy individuals. However, you will have to pay to sell your lease. The lease trader seller fees start at $99.95 for a 15 photos ad, $199.95 for seven days high exposure ad, and $249.95 for a 30-day high exposure advert. The buyers have to pay $60 for a six months subscription, $40 for two months, and $35 for a one-month subscription.
  3. Leaseexchange – If you are looking to get out of a lease as you can no longer afford monthly payments, it may be a tall order to pay for the lease swap service. Leaseexchange is a free online platform that connects individuals looking for a short-term lease with sellers. It has a straightforward registration process that allows you to trade or buy a lease from your phone in a few minutes. You only need to install an app and create an account to list or browse vehicles on the platform. The lease trade app offers a comprehensive breakdown of car specifications and leases details to help you quickly find the ideal car for your needs and budget.
  4. Quitalease – Quitalease is a widely acknowledged online platform that brings high-quality, carefully sifted lease ads that offer value to lease buyers. The site has a simple application process and intuitive listings that let you search for whatever you need. Quitalease does not charge sign-up fees, and you can start attracting potential buyers in seconds once you register.
  5. Leasequit – Leasequit can help you easily find a buyer for your car lease. The company offers an optimized lease trading for a user-friendly experience. Leasequit not only helps people to sell their lease, but it focuses on quickening the process with several services. The company lists your swap deal on its dealer listing to find people who may want to buy out the lease. It also optimizes user searches to include your car if there is a search for the same make or model. Leasequit further offers strategic marketing campaigns to help drive more traffic. Nevertheless, the company has a $19.99 monthly fee that you should pay to enjoy all the services.


A car lease swap offers a quick way out of a lease by allowing people looking for short-term vehicle ownership to take over the lease responsibility. It allows buyers to take advantage of short-term commitment, seller incentives, and lower payments. However, a lease transfer is not always a good deal. You will need to understand how does a swap lease work and things to consider for a better deal. We recommend that you carry out a thorough car inspection to find red flags that may work against you in the long term, like low mileage and excess tear and wear before the car swap signing documents.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Is It A Good Idea To Takeover A Lease?

A lease takeover offers many benefits: no down payment, lower price, a short-term commitment, and seller incentives. You can find people willing to pay you to buy their lease, which is a good deal for short-term ownership. However, you will need to be careful with your selection to get the best value as excessive tear and wear could attract fees at the lease-end.

Does A Car Swap Hurt Your Credit Score?

No. A car swap will not hurt your credit score unless there is a clause that puts you responsible for payments if the new lessee fails to make payments. Always review the terms and conditions of your lease contract to know your responsibilities before a lease swap.

Do You Need Good Credit For Swap A Lease?

Most dealerships require the person taking over the lease to meet the minimum requirements that include a good credit score and financial stability.

CarsPlan Admin

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