A copier is an essential part of most businesses.  For some businesses a single function copier is all they need.  Others need multi-function copiers that not only have the ability to copy but can also scan, print, fax, etc.  Even though the needs vary across different businesses, at the time of acquiring a copier all businesses are faced with the same age-old question:  what is better for your business to buy or lease a copier?  (drum roll…drrr) And the answer is….you guessed it, there is no definite answer that applies to all businesses for this question: the answer depends and varies based on your business.  That is a generic and ambiguous answer isn’t it?  Yes, it is a generic and ambiguous answer but it is also the one true answer for this question.  For instance, if you are a small business with limited operational capital, buying a $5,000 to $10,000 copier might be detrimental even fatal for your business.  If this sounds like your business then leasing is a better option for you.  With a lease you will be able to get the copier you need without draining much needed operational capital from your business.  On the other hand if you are a business with large capital reserves, why pay interest on a lease, when you can buy a copier upfront and save money?  Like these two different business situations/factors mentioned above, there are several more that you need to consider when your business faces this decision:

    • Is printing/copying an essential part of your operation?  Are you a high print/copy volume business?  If this is the case leasing might be a better fit for your business.  With high print/copy volumes your copier will get “beat up” and after a few years you will start seeing performance issues which will result in downtime and business operation bottlenecks.  With a lease you can ensure that after 2 to 3 years you have new, reliable equipment which will enable you to prevent/reduce downtime.
    • Is your business needing a big tax write off this year?  If so, purchasing a copier and writing it off might be your best option.  Leasing also has some tax advantages but if you need a big write off right away you will definitely want to buy.
    • Is your business a technology-oriented business that needs to stay at the cutting edge of technology?  If so, then leasing is the way to go for your business.  With a lease you are able to easily refresh your technology every 2 to 3 years, depending on the term of your lease, allowing you to acquire the newest, latest and greatest copier at the end of each lease term.

So these are some of the main reasons why the answer to this old age question is a generic and ambiguous answer, it is not a one size fits all answer.  The answer will vary depending on your business and your business needs.  If you are in the market for a copier take a close look at your business and use this blog as a reference to decide whether to buy or lease.  If you have questions, or need additional help with this or any of the other services we offer, Flex Imaging is here for you!