Rent vs buy calculator

Rent vs buy calculator icon

This calculator helps you work out:

  • Should you rent, buy or borrow electrical goods or furniture?
  • The total cost of renting (consumer lease)
  • The other options available to you

For detailed information see disclaimers & assumptions and FAQs below.

Estimated time: 5 mins


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While there may be benefits to renting, you should find out:

  • What you will end up paying in total (it could be more than you think)
  • If you will own the item at the end of the term
  • If the product is new or pre-used
  • If there are any termination/cancellation fees if you break the contract early
  • If you are paying more for insurance, a warranty or a damage liability reduction product

Use this calculator, ask your provider and check the contract to find the answers.


Disclaimer & assumptions


It is an estimate only. Results will depend on the accuracy of your inputs.


  • Fees - this calculator does not include additional fees such as late payment fees
  • Other fees - if you have elected to purchase damage liability reduction (insurance) you will need to add this to the cost, unless it has been included in your regular rental payments
  • Delivery - no allowance has been made for delivery fees or any other upfront costs
  • Rent period - we assume that you return the goods at the end of the lease period
  • Purchase option - we have not taken into account any amount to purchase the item at the end of the rental period as even though you can often offer to purchase the goods, this is usually not a right

FAQs - frequently asked questions

Q: I am renting, will I own it at the end of the contract?

A: Despite the large amount of money you pay out, you don't own the item at the end of the lease period. It remains the lease provider's property.

Depending on the terms of your agreement, you may:

  • Return the item (in good order) with no further payments needed
  • Make an offer to purchase the goods, which may involve paying an additional amount of money (but the lease provider can refuse to sell them to you)
  • Upgrade to a new model after returning the old, and sign up for a new leasing agreement (which may be at a higher rate than before)
  • Once the rental period ends, lease payments should not be deducted from your account, unless you have agreed to enter into a new lease. You should check with your lessor if amounts continue to be deducted.

Q: What happens if I want to terminate a rental (consumer lease) agreement contract early?

A: You may be asked to pay an early termination fee that can be as high as 95% of the outstanding amount. If you are terminating your lease early because you can no longer afford the repayments, you may be eligible to apply for a hardship variation. You should contact your lessor to discuss this. More information on trouble with debt.

Q: What if I want to give the goods back?

A: Speak to your lessor/provider about the process for returning goods. The lessor may ask you to return the goods to their head office or to one of their branches; or they may be entitled to charge you a fee for collecting the items. If you are terminating your lease early, you may also be charged an early termination fee, which can be as high as 95% of the outstanding amount.

Q: What happens if I damage the goods I lease?

A: This depends on the terms of your rental contract. Generally, you are responsible for the cost of any repairs resulting from damage caused by you. Speak to your lessor about how to repair goods because there may be rules that state who is authorised to make repairs. If you have home contents insurance you may be able to make a claim under that policy.

Q: Does the rental company have to fix the goods if they are faulty?

A: The law for faulty goods is the same whether you are leasing or whether you have bought the goods. The law states you are entitled to have faulty goods that do not meet minimum standards refunded, repaired or replaced. Speak to your lessor about how to arrange this.

Q: What if I am unhappy with the service I am receiving?

A: If you are not happy with the service you are receiving or have any other issues with your lessor, you are entitled to lodge a formal complaint with the lessor's internal dispute resolution department. If you are not happy with the response you receive or it takes too long to receive a response, ask the lessor for contact details of the external dispute resolution service they belong to. By law all regulated lease providers need to be a member of an external dispute resolution service. See how to complain.

Related links

Last updated: 07 Mar 2018