Choosing the right POS system for your business can be a daunting task. A few quick searches online show just how many options are out there. But before you start thinking about which POS system to select, you must decide whether you will be buying or leasing a POS system.

There are pros and cons to both buying and leasing, but it is important to remember that every business is different. Think about what you need for your business, and try not to focus too much on what has worked for other people; their POS systems are specifically tailored to their needs – not yours.

Oftentimes, leasing is all about convenience. Depending on the size of your business and the number of terminals you need, the price of purchasing a POS system might simply be too high. You won’t own a leased POS system until all of the payments are made, but affordable monthly rates make leasing an attractive option. However, the total cost of leasing a POS system will be more than simply buying one upfront. To gain a better understanding of what leasing a POS system entails, take a look at the following pros and cons:

Pros:

  • Limited initial cash outflow; 
  • Payments are spread out; 
  • Unlike other subscription (SaaS) models, you own it at the end; and 
  • Flexible terms (1-5 years).

Cons:

  • Interest payments tend to add up (anywhere from 13% to 20% based on the term); 
  • Delays initial shipment due to the paperwork associated with a credit check, contract, etc.; 
  • Not available to everyone – you must have good credit in order to lease; and 
  • It’s much more difficult to resell your equipment if your business fails.

In order for a business to become or remain competitive, it must leverage the best technology available. Leasing can be a great option for businesses that are trying to conserve capital – new restaurants, retail stores, and smaller startups could be hesitant to spend money on a new POS system. There’s nothing wrong with leasing a POS system until a purchase becomes more feasible. Leasing gives you the ability to save your working capital for emergencies.

When the point of sale industry was just starting to gain traction, buying was the only option. The main benefit of buying a POS system is that it is yours and yours alone. Buying a POS system lets businesses avoid the hassle of monthly bills and allows them to eliminate the interest expense associated with leasing.

Even though leasing a POS system leads to higher total acquisition cost, in the long run, POS leasing can produce favorable tax implications that can be helpful to your business. Buying and leasing offer two good, distinct options for owners. Make a decision that meets your financial requirements and long-term business plan.

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