Is worth it to rent a photocopier? Photocopier rental costs
Photocopier leasing and photocopier renting are both great ways of obtaining a machine with minimal downpayment, which is very popular with small business owners. There are many factors to take into consideration when deciding on which method of finance you decide to go for.
Terms and Conditions aka read the small print!
First thing to note is when you take out a photocopier lease, you are stuck to those machines for that particular time period which could be 3, 4, or 5 years. When you sign your agreement with the leasing company, the monthly payments will be a direct debited from your bank account directly to the leasing company. It’s completely separate from the service contract you have with your photocopier supplier who pitched to you the product and service. It can get quite confusing so it’s important to get all your information upfront and know exactly what you’re signing up for.
When it comes to leasing agreements, you also need to consider that at the end of the leasing period you will not own the photocopier. This is neither bad or good but just depends on your business financially and operationally. Let’s take a good leasing example here:
You’re a well established care agency printing a high volume of colour and have many clients walking into your office. You inherited an old copier from the previous owner but it breaks down often and there is no service agreement.
In this instance, leasing a brand new copier every 3 years works perfectly as you get a brand new shiny office photocopier for your lovely premises and you look good in front of your clients. Your monthly payments are consistent as you have committed to a period of leasing for 3 years and you can allocate a certain budget towards your photocopier which allows you to plan for other things. Also, the low upfront costs mean you can better allocate your funds elsewhere.
There won’t be any separate admin or interest monthly fees with your lender when you take out a leasing contract, just the fixed monthly fee you agreed at the start with the copier supplier. Leasing contracts do however will have admin and late fees if you fall behind on your payments. Your maintenance service may also be in breach if you fall behind on your repayments.
Another good point to mention in this instance is if you sign a 5 year lease, you’ll have the same copier for the that period. Depending on how much the copier is used, you may want a more modern looking photocopier every 3 years instead of waiting 5 years. If your copier is looked after well from your service provider, you’re not bothered by the way it looks, its reliable and the cost per copy is low, then signing a 5 year photocopier lease contract is is better for you.
If you are a high volume user, you’re going to be using a strong high volume copier with a fast print speed. Small businesses in industries like Law and Healthcare typically tend to sign a frequent lease agreement as the photocopier play a vital part within their organisation.
In healthcare, this could literally mean life or death, so companies in this sector will not hesitate at the overall cost of a brand new photocopier under a new lease every 3 years, as long as they receive fast response maintenance services from the supplier, the print speed is sufficient and the monthly leasing cost is within budget.
Tax deductible - the accountants view
Your accountant has also made you aware that your lease payments are tax deductible, which means your company can claim back the full cost of your office equipment as a business expense. Purchasing your copier will be entered into your accounts as a capital item. This mean you can only claim back a certain amount of the total cost of depreciation each year, which could be a sizeable amount on your tax bill a the end of the year. Your accountant will probably be able to give you more information on your most tax efficient and cost effective way about getting your photocopier.
Lease purchase is also an interesting viable option for a business who has found their machine reliable and easy to use. Say you’re coming to the end of your lease contract but the copier you have does the job with no frills is cheap to run and hardly breaks down.
You’ll find that in many cases the lender may let you keep the machine for a nominal fee, for example £1, as the lender rarely wants to take back the asset as they have already made their money on interest rates. They’re in the business of lending money and not selling office equipment. You may even be able to get a better deal with new photocopier suppliers as they will give you a trade in value against the machine you’ve just paid £1 for!
When you come to compare quotes, this copier trade in value will also be taken off the photocopier rental monthly cost and if you purchase your photocopier outright.
If you’re a new start up business, you may find it difficult to lease a photocopier as you’ll probably have minimal or no credit history with your new business and leasing companies will only tend to give credit to businesses with 1 or 2 years of filed accounts.
In these instances, renting a photocopier is a great alternative. Some suppliers may describe it as a lease rental but for the purpose of this blog we’re going to call it renting.
Renting a photocopier
Is similar to leasing a photocopier although you get much more flexibility and options on the equipment and the length contract. As mentioned earlier, lease contracts are fixed with no flexibility on the term or the equipment, which make renting a copier highly desirable.
A rental contract for can be anywhere from 1 day to 5 years. By rule of thumb, the lower agreed period, the higher more it will cost to rent a photocopier.
Added bonus of renting
Flexibility. For example, if you start out with a basic machine but after a few years you find that your multifunctional device is not fit for purpose, you’re not tied in to a long term agreement with that particular machine. You can inform your supplier that your business needs have changed and you require features such as duplex printing or that you didn’t expect such high volumes of printing and you need a faster machine with auto toner replacements.
Suppliers will be happy to accommodate your request for a different copy machine as the majority of photocopier rentals are refurbished machines which are readily available. Maintenance costs are still based on monthly usage of the machine and involves paying by a cost per copy. This includes servicing and parts with no additional cost for toner refills either.
Depending on how many pages you copy/print, you may be able to organise a flat fee rental agreement for your photocopier hire. This will be a flat flee per month which includes renting the photocopier and a certain amount of colour and mono copies. You may even be given unlimited copying usage which definitely is worth it to rent a photocopier given this option.
If you need a copier only for a week, clearly leasing a photocopier is not going to be a good fit and neither is buying a machine outright.
Once you are certain about the features you want and don’t want, making the right purchase will be a lot easier. Our basic Ricoh photocopiers cost £995 + VAT. A slightly advanced one about £1,295 + VAT and a fully automatic, high speed, and high volume one between £1,995 – £2,995 This is a rough estimate and actual prices may differ depending on stock. Please give us a call on 0208 808 3103 or email us and we’ll do our best to provide you with as much information as possible so you can make an informed decision.