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Investing in CAD/CAM Equipment: Lease Vs. Purchase

investing-in-cad-cam-equipment-lease-purchaseMy wife and I both grew up in conservative families in conservative Cincinnati Ohio where you only purchase what you can pay for. Now that we are parents and home owners we run our personal finances the same way. While we can all do without certain luxuries in our personal life that may not be the case for your dental lab, especially if you want your lab to succeed.

According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, there are 4 questions you should ask yourself when it comes to leasing or purchasing new equipment, each with their own set of pros and cons. Here is what they say when it comes to leasing vs. purchasing equipment:

Why should I consider leasing my equipment?

Pro: Leasing allows businesses to get the equipment they need without having to pay a full cost upfront. By leasing your equipment, you will endure less initial costs than if you were to make full purchases but still get the products you need.

Con: Often times, leasing can end up costing more money in the long run. With a deposit, your monthly payments, and interest, you may end up spending $5,500 on a product that originally cost $4000.

Are there tax benefits or areas to save money through leasing equipment?

Pro: The full cost of leasing equipment is generally deductible from taxable income.

Pro: Leases lasting 5 sometimes 7 years allow for the cost of your assets to be claimed as capital allowances.

Con: Capital allowances cannot be claimed for assets on leases that are less than 5 sometimes 7 years

Will my finances be easy to manage while I lease equipment?

Pro: Making monthly payments over time allows you to budget your funds and limit unexpected expenditures.

Con: Lease agreements can be intricate and complex, sometimes making them more complicated to manage than an outright sale.

Will I be able to access the same equipment when leasing?

Pro: Often times, leasing allows businesses to have access to a higher standards of equipment than the business could afford if buying it outright. Making smaller monthly payments can help a business obtain a product that they would not generally be able to afford.

Pro: Leasing makes upgrading equipment easy. Because technology is constantly evolving, your company may want to use a new model after several years. Rather than having to worry about getting rid of your current model and purchasing a new one, you don’t need to worry about sales.

Con: Unfortunately, with leasing you are always at the mercy of your leasing company. Because you don’t actually own your equipment.

The Dental Technology Solutions division at Whip Mix, partners with two different financing companies that offer several different types of leases and financing options. The most common lease offered is a $1 buyout lease, meaning you can purchase the equipment at the end of the lease for $1. As a dental lab this is a great option to have at the end of your lease. If you like your equipment and it is fitting your needs it is an extremely cost effective way to continue with what you have. On the other hand, we all know how fast technology is changing in the dental industry and with the cost already worked into your budget you can easily upgrade to new equipment.

If you are going to lease make sure you ask questions to the leasing company such as are you familiar with our industry and does my current insurance cover my equipment or will I need extra. The key is to ask the questions and make sure you are comfortable. Regardless of how conservative your upbringing may have been make sure you are doing everything you can to move your dental lab forward.

Chris Frye

Chris has been a product specialist for over 18 years. In 2012, he became involved in the 3D printing industry, helping clients understand the complexities of printing and how it can help their companies. He is knowledgeable in all forms of 3D printing, having been associated with Stratasys, 3D Systems and Asiga. Chris can be reached at or 513-680-1512.

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