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Office Printers: Should I Buy or Lease it?

Updated: Mar 25, 2019


Office MFP

You’ll face this dilemma when you’re starting a business.

This is can be a very important decision for your business. For instance, if you decide to purchase a copier and over the next few years, you discover a great business opportunity, and take advantage of it if you had the extra capital (cash). A lease would allow you to do this.

Years ago, the buy vs. lease ratio for a business was about half and half. Half leased their copier, and the other half purchased these new devices for their office. Back then, a copier just copied.

Today they print, copy, scan, fax, fold, sort, staple, print from smartphones and more. They have become an integral part of managing the paper flow and electronic files of a business; the cornerstone of an overall document management strategy. That’s why they are referred to as multi-function copiers or multi-function printers (MFPs).

Today, over 90% of the businesses lease their copiers. Why? Let’s look at the differences between a purchase and a lease.

The initial cost for buying a printer for your office may be several hundred or thousand dollars. This amount depends on the quality of the equipment you buy. You may need more than one printer. The initial cost of renting printers is significantly less than buying printers outright and printer leasing can offer your business the flexibility of meeting your cash flow needs while wrapping all the other costs like set-up, installation and sometimes service contracts. You may end up paying an initial security deposit and your first month's rental fees, but this should leave you with some additional money in the bank that you can use for other purposes.

As technology continues to improve rapidly, it may be necessary to replace your printers quite often to keep up with those changes. If you buy your printers, replacing them will cost you a significant amount of money each time you do so. If you have a good lease, however, you may be able to upgrade your equipment without any significant change in price.

When you enter a lease, you sign up to a fixed rate. This means the rate is fixed for the lifetime of the lease agreement. Even if lease and loan rates rise in the future, you are still paying the same rate you originally agreed to at the signing of your lease.

If you have the capital (money in your bank account), then the purchase of a copier may be the best route for you to go. The main benefit for purchasing a copier for your business is not having to pay the monthly fee. This allows you to keep your business running with little or no debt, but to minimize your operating costs you’ll need a service agreement that provides you with installation, toner and can handle any inconvenience that you could have with the machine, specially if it’s operated by more than one person.

Leasing with us presents you with a significant advantage when it comes to getting technical support. We provide support for the products we lease, and such support doesn’t cost you additional money out of your pocket, since it’s included in all our leases.

Buying a printer, however, will require that you pay for your own repairs and rely on the manufacturer for technical support. This can prove to be expensive if you have to buy additional parts. The cost of printer toner also may add up fairly quickly if you buy, whereas a leasing company may replace toner for you as needed.

When it comes to tax deductions, both printing and leasing can help you reduce your tax liability. In general, the Internal Revenue Service will allow you to deduct certain costs associated with running your business.


Final Consideration:


Most business start with buying a desktop copier/printer that isn’t very fast and doesn’t give you many options like an MFP does. Also, businesses owners think about the cost of the machine, and not the cost of maintaining the machine and the price of the ink/toner. As an example, if you buy a Laser Color MFP, you’re going to pay $429.99.- for the machine, and the cartridges that come with it are typically small in the sense that they may physically look the same size, but they may have less than a quarter of the amount of ink that a full cartridge would have. They're called, "Starter." When you go to purchase the cartridges you’ll face a shock realizing that you’ll pay $129.99.- for each color (C/Y/M) plus $90.99.- for the black, with a yield of approximately 2.300 (-5%) pages and if you print photos or more than 5% of the paper surface in color, the ink will last less, so in average you’re paying around $0.25.- per copy. If you do around 1.000 copies per month, you’ll end paying $240.- in ink ($481.- every 2 months or so), not considering the initial cost of the machine and God save us if the machine suffers any damage!

If you lease the machine you could pay as low as $0,006.- (Yes, less than 1 cent) per B/W copy and $0,05.- per color copy, that’s 5 times less than a desktop copier and with more functions.


#officeprinters #lease #copier #savetoner #savemoney

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