What’s the process for personal car leasing?

At the end of your car lease, you simply arrange the collection of your vehicle. As long as there’s no damage and you’re within your mileage limit, you’ll have no issues with your return.

You’ll find the full returns process to ensure you’re prepared for returning your lease car at the end of your contract.

Car lease returns process

Below, you’ll find the full process for returning your lease vehicle:

  1. Let the finance company know time, date and location prior to your contract end date - typically 30 days prior to contract end date
  2. Choose your next lease car so we can try to arrange delivery and collection on the same day
  3. Check over your car and repair any damage outside fair wear and tear to avoid additional fees
  4. Clean the vehicle so the inspection can easily take place
  5. Collect everything you’ll need to give back - spare keys, the service book, owner’s manual and MOT certificate (if required)
  6. Remove all personal items from the car
  7. Your car will be collected on the agreed-upon date - it will be inspected on the arrival of the driver
  8. Sign the car over to the driver and keep a copy of the receipt

The collection of your lease car can be arranged 30 days prior to the end of your contract. You’ll have to arrange collection seven to ten days before the final day - the more notice you give, the better.

Make sure you attend the agreed collection as you will be subject to an admin charge if the appointment is missed.

What do I need to arrange for the collection of my lease car?

You’ll need to give the following information when booking in your car collection:

  • Vehicle registration plate number
  • Contact name
  • Collection address with the postcode
  • Mobile and landline (when possible) contact numbers
  • Preferred collection date
  • The current mileage

What’s fair wear and tear?

Vehicle Contracts follow the BVRLA guidelines on fair wear and tear for lease vehicles. The guidelines specify any damage should be natural deterioration rather than due to driver error or an accident. Natural deterioration is classed as fair wear and tear.

Key things you should check before returning a vehicle:

Including a maintenance package does help to keep damage within fair wear and tear, by providing a service and cover for your tyres.

If you do cause any damage to a lease car, inform Vehicle Contracts as soon as it occurs.

Returning a leased car checklist

Before you return your lease vehicle, make sure you complete our checklist to avoid any additional charges:

  • Read over the BVRLA guidelines
  • Check over your car inside and out - scratches over 25mm or where the primers or bare metal is showing should be repaired
  • Repair any damage to your vehicle outside fair wear and tear
  • Note the mileage and ensure you haven’t exceeded your limit
  • Ensure you have all the documents including an MOT certificate if required
  • Check you have all the keys in the vehicle
  • Put all removed accessories back in the vehicle - parcel shelf, etc.
  • Clean the vehicle inside and out for the inspection
  • Empty the car of personal items

End of lease FAQs

Below, you will find our frequently asked questions about the end of your leasing contract.

A leased car can be returned early, however, you may be subjected to an early cancellation fee. Where possible, try to arrange collection at the end of your contract to avoid this.
No, as long as everything is to the agreed-upon conditions such as mileage and there isn't any damage, you won't have to pay any additional fees.
Yes, the collection of your lease car is free from anywhere on the mainland UK, usually Monday to Friday, 9 am to 5 pm.
In the unfortunate event you go over your mileage limit, you will be charged on a pence per mile basis. The amount will be agreed upon in your initial contract.

For example, if you were to go 1,000 miles over your limit at five pence per mile, you would be charged £50.
When you're coming to the end of your lease, you will be notified several times to arrange collection. If you do go over your agreed contract, you may be subject to a late fee depending on what's agreed in your contract.
Your car doesn't have to be spotless before it's returned as long as it's in a safe and roadworthy condition and the inspection can be carried out quickly and easily.
Yes, you're well within your rights to dispute any fees you don't think are valid. With BVRLA lease companies, you can pay for a third-party engineer to check the vehicle, however, their decision is final so if they agree the charges are valid, you'll have to pay.
This decision will have to be made by the finance company. Please contact the supplying finance company to see if they can extend your car lease. You will not be able to start a new lease on the same vehicle and may have to get the latest version of the same vehicle if it's still available.