end of contract

We wouldn't expect a vehicle to be returned in the same condition that we delivered it in at the beginning of the contract - fair wear and tear occurs no matter how carefully a vehicle is looked after, and happens when normal usage causes deterioration to a vehicle. It is not to be confused with damage which occurs as a result of a specific event or series of events such as impact, inappropriate stowing of items, harsh treatment or negligent acts.

An appraisal is carried out at point of collection where we ask all collection drivers to note any obvious damage. A full inspection of the vehicle will then be carried out once it arrives at our de-fleet centre. The vehicle will undergo a more detailed damage and condition assessment in a controlled inspection environment. Any additional damage that falls outside of the BVRLA (British Vehicle Rental Leasing Association) Fair Wear and Tear guidelines will be recorded and a re-charge may be imposed. 

All vehicle documentation including operation manuals, service books and any other documents relating to vehicle equipment must be intact and available. All documents must be inside the vehicle on its return. A full set of keys including the master key, spares and locking wheel nut keys, should be returned with the vehicle. Accessories such as parcel shelves, load covers, restraining straps and nets must be returned with the vehicle. The spare wheel (including 'spacesaver'), jack and other tools must be intact, present and stowed properly, in the correct location and in good working order. The emergency tyre inflation canister, if supplied when new, should be in full working order, serviceable and ready for use. A canister that has been partially or fully discharged should be replaced. 
Windscreens, mirrors and windows
Light scratching is acceptable provided it does not interfere with the driver's line of sight and any heating elements still work properly. Chips, cracks or holes are not acceptable. Repaired chips within the driver's line of sight are not acceptable. Repaired chips outside the driver's line of sight are acceptable provided they are repaired to a professional standard and the work is under warranty. If it has passed an MOT this does not necessarily mean it is acceptable against the BVRLA Fair Wear & Tear return standard. Missing, cracked or damaged door mirrors are not acceptable.

Vehicle repairs prior to handing it back
We do not expect the collection drivers to identify if repaired damage is to the correct standard. Once returned to the de-fleet site, the vehicle will undergo a more detailed damage and condition assessment in a controlled inspection environment, to the BVRLA return standard. Any obvious evidence of poor repair, such as flaking paint, preparation marks, paint contamination, rippled and poorly matched paint, is not acceptable and a charge may be imposed.

Once the lease agreement has reached its end, the vehicle will need to be returned to us.  You can opt to lease a new vehicle; however there is no opportunity for you to own the vehicle you have leased, during or after the agreement.

Once you return the vehicle to us we will compare the actual mileage with the contracted mileage. Excess mileage charges will apply if you exceed the agreed contracted mileage over the term of the agreement. The rate charged (pence per mile) will be confirmed at the start of the agreement.

You will not receive a refund if you travel less than the contracted mileage rate over the term of the agreement.The vehicle should be returned to us in a condition that meets the BVRLA 'fair wear and tear' guidelines otherwise charges may be incurred. Details of the BVRLA fair wear and tear guide are available online.

The collection driver will make a note of any damage that is visible on the vehicle. The noted damage must be a true reflection of the vehicle's condition at the point of collection. The damage recorded at the point of collection is not necessarily the damage that you will be charged for as often small marks and scratches will be within guidelines for fair wear and tear. 

When the vehicle arrives at one of our centres it will be inspected by one of our fully BVRLA trained Vehicle Assessors. This assessment will identify damage which is within or outside of the BVRLA fair wear and tear guidelines. It is this assessment that decides what damage you will be charged for.

Operating times for collecting vehicles are between the hours of 9:00am to 5:00pm. Although our transport department endeavours to meet any AM or PM requests made by customers, we are unable make any guarantees on timed collections. This is because there are so many varied situations, outside of our control, which could prevent the driver from arriving at a requested time.

Returns before Contract End

Should you wish to return your vehicle before the end of the contract an early termination fee may apply which could be of significant cost depending on what stage in the life of the contract this occurs.

The type of final payment you will be required to make will depend on your contract type. Contract Hire agreements; for example, have fixed monthly rentals for the life of the contract.

Additional charges may apply for excess mileage and end of contract damage. Please refer to your contract and the BVRLA Fair Wear and Tear guidelines for further information.

If you want to keep your vehicle for a set amount of time you may want to apply for a formal extension. If you don’t return the vehicle by your current contract end date, your contract will automatically roll into an informal extension.

Here are the main differences between the two:

Formal extension

Informal extension

Contract type

A formal extension is where you agree to keep your current vehicle under a new agreement, for a set amount of time.

If you only want to keep your vehicle for a short while, or you’d like more flexibility on returning it, you may want to think about an informal extension.

An informal extension means you carry on with your current agreement for a further amount of time, giving you the flexibility to return your vehicle when you like.

Your monthly rental amount may increase. So, it may be more cost-effective to formally extend your contract if you’re planning to keep your vehicle for a while or if your mileage allowance needs to be amended.

Time Period

You can keep your vehicle for a total of five years, including your original contract and formal extension. So, if your current contract is for three years, the maximum length of your formal extension will be two years (24 months).

An informal extension is meant to be a shorter-term option. If you’re in an informal extension for over a year, we’ll be in touch to see whether it’s still the best option for you, and to talk about the potential return of your vehicle.

Early termination fees

If you return the vehicle before your contract finishes, you will need to pay an early termination fee, which could be up to 50% of your remaining rental payments.

There are no early termination fees as you’re keeping your current agreement on a rolling basis.

Your monthly rental amount

Your rental amount will change depending on how much you change your term and mileage.

It’s a good idea to understand whether you’re currently above or below your contracted mileage, as you can increase or decrease your allowance with a formal extension.

If you’re currently above your mileage, and you increase your allowance – it could reduce the risk of you being charged extra when you return the vehicle.

Or, if you’re currently below your contracted mileage – you could reduce your allowance. This may reduce your monthly rental amount; however, you won’t get refunded for any mileage you don’t use from your allowance when you return the vehicle.

Your rental amount may increase, as the benefit of the larger initial payment you made at the start of the contract will no longer reduce your monthly payments.

You can find how much your monthly payments will be if you go into an informal extension in your original agreement.

Your payments

We’ll keep invoicing you a month in advance.

We’ll change how we invoice you from a month in advance to a month in arrears.

If you decide to return your vehicle to us after your contract has ended and you take out a new vehicle lease at the same time, your monthly outgoings could be greater than you were expecting. This is because you may have a month’s rental to pay on the vehicle you’re returning and a rental payment on your new vehicle in the same month. If you’ve taken a payment holiday during your contract, you’ll make your first repayment at the same time too.