What’s the Difference Between Copier Lease and Rental?


At a glance, it’s easy to be confused about the difference between a copier lease and rental. This is because the words’ lease’ and ‘rental’ have the same meaning in the dictionary.

With over 30 years of experience as an office furniture and technology dealer in the Maritimes, we often find ourselves explaining the difference between a copier rental and a lease.

Despite the confusing terminology, copier rentals are not the same as copier leases. This article will walk you through the factors that set these two options apart, their cost-effectiveness, and the important factors to consider so you can choose the solution that best fits your company’s needs.

What is a Copier Rental?

Copier rentals are much like car rentals. When you rent a copier from a dealer, you are charged a fee for the period of time you use it. Also, like car rentals, they are not intended to be long-term rentals – rental periods can range from a single day to an entire month.

The fee could be a per-month, cost-per-click, or a combination of the two. Unsurprisingly, you will not own your equipment at the end of your rental agreement.

Typically, organizations prefer to rent a copier because they need one off-site or away from their headquarters and only need it temporarily. It’s a great way to ensure they can access the latest copier technology without making a long-term or expensive commitment.

If you have a seasonal business or one that sees a dramatic increase during a set period of time, a copier rental may be the right fit for you. Ideal scenarios of copier rental agreements include accounting firms renting an extra copier during tax season to handle the extra paperwork or construction sites renting a copier for their temporary, on-site office. 

What is a Copier Lease?

Copier lease agreements are similar to car leases but not identical. They can be best described as ‘a purchase over time’. A copier lease gives businesses the right to own a new or used copier by agreeing to set payments and a Service Agreement. This allows businesses to afford a single copier or multiple machines more easily. 

Unlike a car lease, there isn’t an option to give up the copier and stop making payments (unless you go out of business) before the contract is up, so once you pick a copier and sign a contract, it’s yours! 

Although businesses have found a workaround to this issue in the past by initiating a ‘copier buyout‘ with their copier dealer, generally, at the end of your copier lease agreement, you will be faced with a few options – renew your lease, upgrade your equipment or buy out the device. Not to worry, this is a decision we can help with too! Hop over to our’ Options at Copier Lease Expiry: Renew lease vs Buy Out (Pros & Cons)‘ article to learn more. 

Leasing is a great option if you’re an established company or need regular and consistent copying functionality over a sustained period. It allows you to pay affordable monthly payments and provides long-term equipment use without purchasing it outright. You can also bundle a Managed Print Services program that includes toner replacement, regular maintenance, and service in case of a malfunction or breakdown so you can keep your productivity levels soaring without any interruptions.


Which is more cost-effective – leasing or renting copiers?

On the face of it, leasing seems infinitely more cost-effective than renting. This is because, when leasing, the outlay is spread over a longer period of time. Additionally, it’s fully tax-deductible and can be paid for out of your business’s taxable profits, resulting in a significant amount of tax benefits. 

That being said, renting has its advantages regarding cost-effectiveness too. If you only need a copier sporadically, renting is more cost-effective. Furthermore, renting is a much safer option for businesses that may have concerns about the financial burden of a long-term contract, as it allows you to terminate quickly without big penalties.

Both pros and cons exist; however, if you’re happy with the long-term commitment and don’t require much flexibility, leasing is your cheaper option, as renting a copier over a long period will often cost you more than buying the copier outright.

What Factors Should You Consider Before Deciding Whether to Lease or Rent Copiers?

When it comes to renting or leasing copier equipment, there are several factors to consider.

From our experience, these are the top 3 questions you should ask yourself before making a decision:

  1. How consistent are your copying requirements, and do you think this consistency will change?
  2. Is it important to your business to constantly have the latest photocopying technology at your disposal?
  3. Do you expect any changes to your business that could affect any long-term agreements you have in place?

So, in summary, if your copying requirements are consistent and you don’t see any changes that could impact you in the long term, leasing will likely be your best option.

On the other hand, if you carry out project work, need the latest photocopying technology to complete the work, have concerns about entering into a lengthy financial agreement, or are a new start-up business without accounts, renting could be a better bet.

Find Your Perfect Solution

Having helped thousands of customers now lease and rent copiers, we have learned that there simply is no single right answer. Whether you should rent or lease your device depends on the needs and requirements of your organization.

 Ultimately, the choice is yours, and if you need some advice determining which makes the most sense for your business, you can contact one of our experts at Office Interiors, and they will be happy to answer any questions you may have. 

Ahona Saha
Marketing Assistant
Office Interiors

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