But it's not a view we support, and the recent 'The End is Nigh' seminar from ACFO highlights the point perfectly.
According to ACFO, end of contract charges cause 'the biggest degree of conflict' between fleets and leasing companies. It claims these charges are 'one of the most contentious aspects of vehicle leasing'. It's not the first time this issue has raised its thorny head, and ACFO certainly knows what it's talking about.
But I can't remember the last time I heard one of our customers complain about end of contract charges.
I reckon our customers already enjoy some of the lowest end of contract charges in the industry. We adhere to the BVRLA Fair Wear and Tear Guide, and we operate a clear, transparent process. For ACVM, end of contract charges are not an opportunity to earn more profit. They are a last resort. When we have to raise a charge, our customers can be confident that they'll pay exactly what we pay – no more, no less.
Don't get me wrong. There is no such thing as a free lunch, so we will raise charges for a vehicle that comes back to us with damage. But what makes us different is that we tend to be a bit more flexible. We don't expect a car with 100,000 miles on the clock to be in the same condition as a car with 40,000 miles. Perhaps it's our motor trade background, but we think it's important to be fair and realistic.
If you do have a problem with excessive end of contract charges, think about ways to encourage your drivers to look after their vehicles. Remind drivers to get any damage repaired before returning a vehicle. Think about how you manage your risk and your accidents. The last thing you want is for your people to be seen driving around in scruffy or damaged vehicles.
And remember, vehicle leasing companies are not all the same. If you're looking for a leasing company that delivers hassle-free contracts right up to the very end, give us a call on 0141 332 2626.