Better to Own It
With the revelation that Aaron’s furniture rental company allegedly uses spyware to track customers who rent computers, it inherently brings up another question: is the cost of instant gratification too high?
For many who opt to rent household items, such as furniture, computers, and washing machines, it may be a matter of convenience to pay a seemingly small amount to rent items, and then own it outright once the contract has concluded.
This seems like an easy, breezy approach for those with limited resources who need the items to effectively run their households. The reality is that it’s probably better to own it, as the poor folks who filed the lawsuit against Aaron’s is likely thinking at the moment.
To underscore my point, consider this true story: a used, two year old 36″ television costs $25 per week to rent from a nationally recognized rental company (not Aaron’s), and ostensibly to own. The contract period is one year, at which time, the renter has spent more than $1,000 on the TV.
Had the customer waited until a little cash was freed up buy a television outright, rather than rent-to-own, he could have saved at least half of what he ultimately paid to satisfy the instant gratification.
What are your thoughts? Have you committed to a rent to own company, but regret it? Share your comments.
Subscribe to ASK THE STRATEGIST by entering your email and clicking submit.