Buying Vs Leasing a Car For Rideshare Driving

Getting a Car

This is one of the largest investments before a house, and should be made with wisdom and knowledge.  Here is a list of a few questions you should ask yourself before leasing or buying a car:

1. How long do you plan to drive?

If you answered 1.5 years or less, we suggest leasing.

2. Do you need a car in the future?

If you answered no, then we suggest leasing. If yes then we suggest buying.

3. Do you have a substantial down payment?

If you answered yes, we suggest buying.

4. Do you have a good credit rating?

If you answered no, we suggest leasing.


Leasing a Car

Below Josh will describe to you his experience leasing a car with a low credit score

I want to highlight my experience in which I had a low credit score, 621, I didn’t have a down payment, and I didn’t want a car for the future. Our first thoughts talk about our recommended car, the Toyota Prius (preferably a third generation model).

  1. Xchange leasing program through UBER was the best option for me, at the bottom of the link is a FAQ.  This is the easiest way to get on the road with a brand new car.  You don’t have to have perfect credit, and the down payment is $250.  The weekly payments are dependent on the type of car you choose  ($100-$200/week) and are taken directly out of your UBER paycheck.  If you don’t plan to drive for UBER, and want to use the vehicle for something else (IE postmates, Lyft, personal use) you can pay for the car every week via online, phone, or mail.  

Overview of the program

  • Easy approval process, UBER partnered with Xchange Leasing to encourage drivers to get on the road.  This encouragement makes it easy for drivers to get a car and get driving.  It is a win/win situation, UBER makes money off you, you make money from UBER, great!
  • Only $250 to start the program, around $180/week deducted from you UBER paycheck for a new Prius.
  • Unlimited mileage, driving 1200 miles/week, you need this.
  • A brand new car is loaded with benefits for the new driver:
    • Higher ratings driver ratings for the newest, clean, flawless car.
    • Best technology for gas efficiency, aerodynamics, driveability, etc.
    • Newer cars have less maintenance problems, especially the prius
    • Routine maintenance included; oil change and tire rotation.  An average savings of $420.00 per year, with a checkup every month.


Buying a Car

Buying a car can substantially lower your monthly car payments and increase profits over time.  With our increased success, and my intent to lower my monthly payments from Xchange Leasing, I plan to buy a 2015 used toyota Prius through Lyft’s Perkspot program that partners with Avis rental cars.  When I purchase the car, I will give you the whole laydown of the transaction, I plan to buy in December before 2017 to optimize the best deals on older models that dealerships are trying to move off the lot.  However, a hefty down payment is typically needed, sometimes money that you don’t have.  In Sean’s situation he bought a 2007 toyota Prius in cash, the only downside to buying an older car is:

    1. He isn’t eligible for LYFT’s power driver bonus which in SF requires a 2011 or newer vehicle.  
    2. More maintenance is expected

A Few Tips On Buying A Car

    • Be patient, shop around.  If you want to earn money while shopping around for the right car, you can rent a car weekly through the Hertz with LYFT, Hertz with UBER or Enterprise with UBER programs.
    • Don’t ever make the decision at the dealership.  Just walk away with the information you need, and make the decision without the salesman trying to make a pushy sale over your shoulder.  

Advantages of a Prius

    • No 30k, 60k, 90k checks.
    • Exceptional gas mileage, it is no secret that a hybrid will save you money on gas, I average around 43 miles/gallon, and that is with SF city driving through hills and a multitude of stop and go traffic.
    • During the first 100,000 miles through the leasing program, all you have to pay out of pocket is new brake pads, new tires, and any damage you are liable for in accidents.  This is a great piece of mind, toyota has great engines, and the batteries are nearly flawless.  Batteries have been known to last up to 300,000 miles. If you buy your Prius you receive an awesome warranty on the battery in California, 10 years or 150,000 miles whichever comes first.  For Sean’s case, the battery had issues at 138,000 miles and he received a brand new one!
    • A hybrid battery and engine working together means less wear and tear on your engine, in turn this lowers your engine maintenance costs.
    • I had to replace my front brakes at 45,000 from San Francisco hill driving.