Caravans – to lease or to own?

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Caravans – to lease or to own?

As things stand, with ever changing travel restrictions, the need to explore closer to home and constantly changing travel prices, the need to have a flexible, comfortable and affordable way to get away from it all is increasingly appealing.

For many people, caravans fit this bill allowing them to explore the UK and Europe without the need to spend time planning ahead and purchase expensive accommodation in hotels or hostels. Caravan owns have the freedom to roam with all the comforts of home.

But caravans are not cheap, with £15,000 being the lowest average price for new models, meaning it might seem outside of your means. However, where in the past purchasing outright may have been the only way to buy a caravan there are now many caravan finance options available.

Owning a caravan

Purchasing a caravan is a large commitment. Of course, you will own the vehicle with no on-going payments to be made. If you can afford it, a straightforward one-off payment makes sense, but before committing there are other factors to consider.

Do you have space to permanently park a caravan, a drive-way or garage that can accommodate a large vehicle? Have you considered the on-going upkeep and maintenance or the additional costs such as insurance?

As well as these additional factors, you should consider that once you own your caravan that is the model you have, upgrading to any new models on the market will be expensive and complicated. If any other above issues relate to you, but caravanning is something you want to indulge in, you could consider leasing or renting a vehicle for your next trip.

Leasing or renting a caravan

If you want the use of a caravan without the on-going hassle of storing and maintaining it, renting a caravan is a good option. It’s very simple. You find a rental agent, book online or visit their premises, fill out some forms, make a payment (often a deposit is included), get the keys and drive away on an adventure. When you’re finished you return the caravan, and provided you haven’t set the vehicle on fire, you get your deposit back and that’s it!

Sometimes renting will come with higher costs on things like insurance (lookout for hidden costs on additional drivers, for example). Thoroughly read through the terms and conditions before renting a caravan.

Perhaps you are looking at a longer trip or several trips over a short period of time? If that is the case then looking at leasing a caravan could be the best option for you. Many companies now offer lease of a caravan from a wide range of models.

Leasing is often considered more expensive than renting, but it is worth considering that caravan leasing companies have an interest in protecting their vehicles (as they will often be resold later on) and, as such, tend to offer incredible caravan insurance as a standard and keep their vehicles in top condition. Leasing can come with peace of mind for longer trips.

Caravan finance options

After considering all the above you might be unsure about which option is best but still be wanting a caravan! Speaking to a specialist in vehicle finance, such as our experts, will open up discussion of other ways to finance your dream caravan. Typical routes to owning a caravan include:

  • Hire purchase: Offering the benefits of a leasing a caravan with the overall goal of owning the vehicle outright by the end of the agreement. After an initial deposit, you will pay monthly instalments to suit your budget, typically for a period of 10 to 20 years.
    A financier purchases the caravan on your behalf (reduced by any deposit you paid to the dealer), then you will repay the original price plus interest over an agreed period.

Alongside affordable payment plans and fixed interest rates, you will be protected under the Consumer Credit Termination Rights and the Consumer Rights Act should problems arise.

Providers usually offer a wide range of the best models on the market and also, depending on the terms of the agreement, often allow a change in terms to upgrade the model before you have finished the original agreement. You won’t own the vehicle outright until the final payment has been made and it is at risk of repossession if you don’t meet the payments. 

  • Caravan loans: Instead of the financer purchasing the caravan on your behalf, they simply lend you the full amount that you then pay back in monthly instalments for an agreed period of time. The process is simple and quick. Once you have been accepted for a loan you will often receive your funds within two working days.

Terms such as interest and repayment rates will vary across different providers and depend on factors like your credit score and budget availably, so it is worth researching a wide range of deals before committing. Alternatively, speak to a caravan finance expert to help guide you to the best loan, lease or purchase deals.

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