Many companies prefer to hire or lease a photocopier rather than purchasing up front. Photocopier hire does away with the need for a large capital outlay, can have tax benefits due to paying for a deductable service and offers the flexibility to upgrade when your business expands.
There are several options and points for comparison to bear in mind when considering photocopier hire.
Leasing a Photocopier
Usually available over a minimum term of several years, leasing a photocopier involves paying a fixed monthly fee to hire a machine from a supplier. Because your business does not own the machine, the price you pay for leasing the copier could be as much as 100% tax deductable. You also avoid a hefty lump sum payment - money which could be better employed elsewhere in your business.
The financing options are normally provided by the photocopier supplier themselves or their usual third party finance company. Leasing agreements are therefore usually much easier and faster to obtain than a bank loan.
During the lease agreement you’ll normally also pay for a service contract which covers regular servicing, call out repair and toner replacement. Make sure any repair and maintenance includes parts and labour. Service contracts can either be fixed monthly fee, based on your monthly usage, or involve elements of both (maximum number of copies with additional charges for going over). Careful comparison of different suppliers is therefore highly recommended.
At the end of the lease agreement you’ll usually have the option of purchasing the machine, returning it to the supplier, signing a new lease for the same copier or upgrading to a newer machine.
Photocopier upgrades can also be made during the term of your lease agreement if you’ve outgrown the initial copier, though this may involve a additional charge.
Renting a Photocopier
Some specialist companies offer short-term rental of copiers for anything from one day upwards. This works out vastly more expensive per day than leasing a machine so should only be considered for the very short term.
Photocopier Hire Pitfalls
When comparing different hire agreements pay close attention to:
- Interest rates on finance agreements – work out how much you’ll pay over the entire term of the lease to compare different suppliers
- Charges for upgrading or for purchasing the machine at the end of the lease
- Charges incurred for early termination of the agreement
- Extra charges resulting from the service contract - make sure cost per copy includes all parts, labour, call-outs and consumables.
Choosing a Photocopier Supplier
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