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In this guide we hope to help you decide if leasing is the right choice for you and your family. We’ll cover the benefits, what you should look for in a family car and other things you’ll need to know about leasing.

Why Lease a Family Car?

There are a number of reasons that you might decide leasing is the right choice for your next family car.

As leasing allows you to change vehicle every few years you can change the vehicle as your family’s needs change.

If you have a growing family and expect to need a larger car in a few years with the arrival of another child or extra boot space for the sports kits then leasing would be a good choice for you. Leasing agreements are typically between two and four years long so you can upgrade to a more spacious model on your next lease without worrying about the resale value of your current vehicle and whether this will be enough to afford a larger model.

Leasing doesn’t require you to pay a large sum of money upfront for the vehicle and the monthly leasing costs are a regular amount making budgeting easier for your family.

You can also add a maintenance package to help avoid any unexpected large bills from the garage. For a few extra pounds a month the cost of any necessary maintenance work, servicing, and MOTs will be included in the lease agreement.

Another financial benefit to leasing a family car is that the road tax will be covered by the funder for the duration of the lease. Please note that if the road tax increases from the amount it was first taxed for then the funder might ask you to pay the difference in price.

All lease vehicles are new and so depending on the length of your lease you will not need to worry about the MOT, as this is not due until a vehicle is three years old. If your lease is longer than three years then it will be your responsibility to complete the MOT, though if you opt for a maintenance package you will not need to pay for this.

Things to Consider When Looking at a Family Car

The next few sections will look at more general points you’ll want to consider when looking for a new family car so are not leasing specific but should still help you when deciding on the right vehicle for your family, and whether leasing it is the best choice.

Car Seats

It is a legal requirement for children to use an appropriate car seat until they are either 12 years old or 135 cm tall.

An important thing to bear in mind when looking at cars if you have three or more children is whether there is enough room in the second row of seats for three car seats to be fitted. Not all cars will have enough room for a car seat to be fitted in each of these seats.

If you are driving with any children in the car then it is your responsibility to ensure that they are using the correct car seat for their age and weight.

For more information on car seats take a look at our extensive overview in this guide on keeping your children safe.

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Space for the Whole Family

When looking at a car you should not only consider if there is enough room for the car seats you need but also for the rest of the family. If you have older children, then you’ll want to ensure there’s enough leg and headroom in the rear seats for them to fit comfortably. It is important to remember that the measurements given might be with the front seats further forward so it’s worthwhile checking that there will still be enough rear legroom with the front passenger and driver seats in a comfortable position.

Another thing it’s good to look for is storage compartments in the rear of the vehicle. Large door storage spaces, pockets on the rear of the front seats and even hidden cubbies can be useful for you to store things within your children’s reach. On longer journeys you might not always be able to hand your children a drink or snack or find the book they want to keep them occupied but if these are stored within arms reach then they can safely get these for themselves.

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Pushchairs, Prams, Buggies and Boot Space

Whether your children are young enough to need a pram or older with a large sports kitbag you will need a boot with plenty of room.

If your children are young enough to need a pushchair then you will need to ensure the boot is wide enough for you to fit this in. You should look for a boot that is a few centimetres longer than the folded buggy so that you have space to move it in and out.

You will also want to ensure there is enough space for other belongings as well as the pushchair and its accessories.

Car Safety Ratings

When driving with your family in the car we know that it’s important to be as safe as possible which is why we recommend looking at the safety rating and features on any vehicle you are considering purchasing.

All new cars are produced to a high safety standard and there are now a number of driver assistance systems available across manufacturers to help you prevent and minimise the impact of an accident.

You might want to upgrade to a higher spec of a vehicle if you’re looking for systems like parking assistance, blind-spot detection or lane-keeping assist. However, these are also systems of convenience and not necessary for you to have to keep your family safe.

Nearly all of new cars on sale in the UK have been tested under Euro NCAP standards and you can always check the rating of a vehicle on their website here.

If you are thinking of leasing through Car Lease Special Offers then one of our Leasing Consultants would be happy to advise you on the Euro NCAP rating of the vehicle.

Other Things to Consider When Leasing a Family Car

One thing to keep in mind when deciding if leasing is the right choice for your family is that at the end of the lease agreement you must hand the vehicle back. As part of this handover process the vehicle will be inspected for any damage or marks on both the exterior and interior so you might want to consider how likely your children are to accidentally mark or damage the interior.

If you decide you like your lease can and do not want to hand it back when you reach the end of your contract then some funders offer the opportunity for you to purchase the vehicle at the end of the contract though this is not always guaranteed.

Although leasing does not require a large upfront payment you will be paying monthly for the vehicle, and if you need to end the lease agreement early there will be an early termination charge. It’s important to make sure you can comfortably accommodate this financial commitment.

If you have any other questions about whether leasing is suitable for you and your family then get in touch on 0330 221 0000.

For more on family leasing check out our guide to keeping your children safe in the car or head back to our guides homepage to learn more about leasing.

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