Friday, July 13, 2007

Credit Card Machines 802

The Cost of Leasing a Credit Card Machine
By []Jamie Estep

Leasing credit card machines and equipment is a common practice for many new business owners. When a business starts out, they are often met with a barrage of telemarketers and companies offering to help them to accept credit cards. Because of the new business owner's extremely busy schedule and lack of knowledge regarding the credit card processing industry, owners are often convinced that leasing a credit card terminal is the best solution for their business.

In reality, leasing a credit card machine is far from the best interest. For most businesses, a simple swipe and print credit card machine is a perfectly acceptable method of accepting credit cards. What many new business owners fail to do, is investigate the actual price of a new credit card machine. What they would find is that the outright purchase of a credit card terminal is often a completely reasonably priced purchase, and usually is many times less costly than a lease. What would cost them two to three hundred dollars to own, can cost them thousands of dollars to lease. Money is very tight, especially during the startup phase of a business, and the extra money spent on leasing a credit card machine is most definitely better suited elsewhere.

Leasing credit card equipment became a standard in the eighties and early nineties, when the lack of consumer knowledge and a growing processing industry led to the portrayal of high priced processing equipment. During this time fifty dollar per month leases were not uncommon. Since the creation of the internet, consumers have access to a vast amount of information. Processing companies can no longer easily inflate the costs of processing equipment. Now, new business owners are virtually the only group susceptible to getting scammed into a lease. This is due mainly to time constraints and a lack of research on their part.

Leases do still play a role in obtaining credit card equipment, but should only be considered when the required equipment is very high priced. Wireless terminals, while becoming more affordable, can still be a considerable investment. Wireless terminals can still cost over a thousand dollars to purchase which is definitely a significant amount of money. Leasing a wireless terminal can alleviate some of this cost, but business owners should still be aware that they will pay more than the cost of the terminal in the end.

Leases also often come with strings attached, or more appropriately a web of strings attached. Lease commonly last for thirty six to forty eight months, but can be in any increment from twelve months up to forty eight. The shorter the lease, the higher the monthly payment. Leases are also normally non cancel-able for the duration of the lease. There may be considerable penalties for canceling a lease before its term is up. Leases are not always for ownership of the equipment, and hefty buyout fees can occur at the end of the lease. Some leases start over at the end of their term, and the business only has a short window to opt out of the lease. Businesses should be aware of the terms governing the lease before they even contemplate signing it. Signing a lease without fully understanding what is involved in it and fully calculating the cost of the lease can be an extremely expensive mistake.

Enter your lease information into the lease []cost calculator to find out how much extra leasing will cost you compared to purchasing.

Copyright 2006 Jamie Estep, The Merchant Account Blog.

Jamie Estep runs the website: ( []The Merchant Account Blog) and offers information and advice on topics relating to credit card processing. The Merchant Account Blog also has a lease cost calculator where businesses can compare the costs of an equipment lease to purchasing a terminal outright. ( []Credit Card Terminal Lease Calculator)

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