… If there is a more baffling subject that needs to be taught in schools is what leasing is available to Schools and colleges. Successive governments have changed legislation and what was possible to finance and lease ten years ago is now different. Not to say its still confusing as different local authorities still have different policies towards finance and leasing. Often these views differ to that of the Department of Education.
Schools that have Academy status have total choice and reality is they will not be constrained and will have the benefits that a business user has. Otherwise there are two clear types of agreement..
Operating Lease- this is increasingly popular for lease companies to offer as they have been fearful of government legislation changes. These are not the most cost effective agreements but are theose of choice. Foe schools looking for leasing this option should try to be avoided unless there is good reason. Essentally an operating lease is the pure rental of the PC’s or Apple Macs – wherbyat the end of the three or four year lease period the equipment is returned – and the lease funder sells it as there profit on the finance. So you can lease £1000 of equipment and repay £1000 over three years which sounds good but then you have to return it at the end. If you consider an Apple Mac is worth circa £300 after 3 years then you can see the true cost of the option.
A Finance Lease or Lease Rental agreement has a pre agreed option to own at the end of the lease for a nominal figure. Since schools are not technically allowed to borrow money this is where it has fallen down recently. As it could be seen as financing. This is NOT what the DoE says but is what some local authorities are wishing to interpret. This option is favoured by business users as it is overall cheaper and the path to ownership is clearer.
HardSoft Computers have been offering leasing to educational users for over 25 years and have seen a cycle. In the 1990’s leasing was a popular option as schools were under pressure to update ageing IT systems but had no means to pay. The next government expanded capital spending on computers and by the begining of this decade most schools had better Networks than many businesses. Then there was austerity and schools still have pressures and from different areas. The rise of the Apple Mac in schools has meant leasing is back in fashion. Capital Funding for schools is tight and whether an operating lease or a more flexible lease then schools have to consider the options.
HardSoft are unique though as not only do we provide the right finance solution over your chosen period we are the supplier of the equipment being Apple Authorised and will support it with Apple engineers. For PC users we offer the same levels of options and service.