Selling Your Lease

Situation: Mrs. B decides she wants a new car.  But must do so without loosing money on current lease.
Current Lease: 2007 VW Jetta GLI with 10 months remaining and a $17,500 payoff (total payoff).

So I set off to find the best possible way to get out of the remaining 10 months and get her in to a new G37 sedan. My initial thought was to use leasetrader or a similar service. However with VWcredit, the original lessee still remains liable for the car even after a lease transfer. There are some ways around that, but involve excessive fees and an additional credit company. Transferring lease = no longer an option.
2nd option was to trade the car in on the G37. But trading in = rolling $3500 negative equity into the G37 lease. Trade-In = Not an option.
3rd option is to find a buyer and sell them the car outright for my payoff amount. So, I put the car on auto trader. No real leads until I upgraded to a “premium listing” with them. Then I started getting good leads. Funny how that works. Anyway, I found a legitimate buyer in Texas. He was very nice, communicated very well, and wanted to use his credit union to finance a loan. So far so good. His credit union agrees on our price of $17,500, his credit is excellent, they send me a few pieces of paper work to sign including me signing my permission to allow the credit union to payoff my lease. Credit Union then contacts VWcredit and ATTEMPTS to payoff my lease. Get a call back from his credit union, “VWcredit will not put the title in a 3rd parties name even with your permission. It must be put in your name if they are to issue a title. Therefore we cannot send payment.” So after a full headache filled day of calling around and verifying this, I was ready to give up. But, thanks to my excellent salesman at Sewell Infiniti of North Houston (plug) I learned that an In and Out would take care of this problem (note: not all dealers will do an in and out, some restrictions apply, see your dealer for more information :). I trade the GLI in to the dealer for $17,500 and at the same time they provide financing for my buyer and sell him the car for $17,500. Because I’m trading the car in to a dealer, the whole putting my name on the title thing becomes a non-issue. Everybody wins.
In summary, getting out of a lease is possible but can cause heartburn, headaches, and money loss. But if your car is in good shape, and can sell at or above its payoff amount, then you might want to consider this In and Out process at a participating dealer.

8 thoughts on “Selling Your Lease

  1. Hi G,

    go info, very useful.

    can you explain more on the premium listing” on autotrader.

    currently my z4 is listed but not on premium. i’ve only gotten 1 lead so far. i have gotten several calls from companies offering to sell the car for me, for a small fee.

    it has been for sale for 3 weeks now. how long before you upgraded to premium listing?

    best, hue

    • @hue. Actually BouncewithB is the one that sold his wife’s car. Not me. Not too sure what the premium add is, maybe he can fill us.

  2. hue, i had her car on autotrader for 4 months and got 1 decent lead. i decided to upgrade to a premium listing about a month ago and after that point the leads started pouring in. Apparently your car gets moved to the top of the search results. Might also add a bold heading or something to that effect. I’m not one for “upgrades” but that one paid off.

  3. I think you might need to be awfully cozy with your dealer for them to do a $0 profit deal on an In and Out like you described. Maybe if you let them stick it to you on the new G37 to make up for the effort, risk, aggravation, etc. But in that case, why bother then. Most likely a person will take a hit one way or the other on an nearly termination, unless the cars wholesale value is truly worth the payoff value. It actually happened to my brother’s 2006 Lexus GX (to the amazement of him and the dealer). Everyonen was happy that day.

  4. @SpicyMikey,
    This was a buyer who agreed to buy my car at KBB private party value. That value was the same as my total lease payoff. Now I’m not saying this is the case every time, or that any of the options I listed in the article are easy to stomach. Most people don’t know these options are available… which was the point complete point of this article.
    On the dealer making $0 profit on an in and out… their are two places where the dealer is making his money. 1. when he leases me the G a few hundered over kbb invoice (which is actually more like $1800 over true invoice).
    2. he is providing financing to my buyer on the in and out.

  5. True, didn’t think about their opportunity to do a markup on the financing also.

    Sorry, wasn’t trying to put down the idea. Actually good to know. Thanks. I’ll remember it in the future.

  6. Hi G,

    I am currently leasing a 2012 VW GLI Auntobahn w/ Nav im 1 year in my lease and my wife is having twins. Is there any way I can get out and get into somthing bigger? preferably a MB GLK…If not, what are my options?

  7. definitely going to try this option, tried everything in the book and just see myself stuck with this car (2013 VW Passat SE) but I would have to save up a little just incase of unexpected expenses and and transfer expenses I would assume. Thanks for posting very helpful

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