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Leasing a new car, is it worth it?

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SEATTLE -- If you are in the market for a new car, experts agree fall is the best time to buy.

In the fall, you're likely to get a great price on last year's model as next year's models start to roll in. It's also a good idea to go to the dealership closer to the end of the day. That's when you catch the sales team more eager to close deals before they head out for the night.

Now you know when to shop, but then enters the age old question: 'Should I buy? Or it it worth it to lease my new car?'

Q13 FOX asked the experts at PEMCO Insurance. Craig Kehrberg, a product manager, said:

  • If your job requires you to have a newer car to chauffeur clients around, like a real estate agent, leasing is more cost effective than buying.
  • If you're making a major life change, like having a family, and want to see if a certain style of car, like a minivan, works for you, leasing is a good option.
  • Or if you like to ensure the car you're driving is always up to date with the latest safety features or technology, leasing is your best bet.

"If you feel that the technology in the car might not be up to par with the latest technology, if you lease a car at least you'll know that that in three years you'll get the new technology features and safety features that a new cars has," Kehrberg said.

Before you lease, there are a few things to watch out for. Kehrberg said, check out how your lease affects your car insurance.

"Leasing companies require you to have higher limits of liability on your car that you might not purchase if you didn't lease a car," Kehrberg said. "They also require you to to have full coverage, so comprehensive and collision coverage."

Make sure to read the leasing contract very carefully. Many include mileage limitations, and if you go over the mileage cap you'll get charged extra when you return the car. If there are any dents or dings, the car maker will likely charge you to fix those things.

Remember, most car lease terms range from two to four years. If you're wanting to keep your car longer than that, then it's worth it to buy the car, instead.