Choosing a new van is easy: working out how you're going to afford it is the hard part. Times are certainly tough, but that rusting heap parked outside has no understanding of what a recession means. So how are you going to replace it? You've got two choices - buy or lease. And with thus easy guide, you'll soon know the best option for you…

The difference between buying and leasing

Buying is the method you're probably most familiar with: find the cash either stuffed away in your bank account (unlikely) or ask someone for a loan. And once paid for, the van is yours. The alternative is leasing. When leasing a vehicle you never own it, you pay a monthly fee for the use of the van (though with some schemes you can pay a lump some at the end of the lease period - e.g. two years - to buy the vehicle outright).

The pros of buying a van

Buying is a good option for several reasons: * It tends to offer the best value. When you're negotiating with cold, hard cash, you're in a good position to haggle down the price and get a great deal. * If you've already got a van, you can trade it in and save even more on the purchase. * You are not restricted to a mileage limit, often a pitfall of leasing a van. * Most importantly, the van is yours. It's an asset, a part of your business and if you need to trade, sell or swap, you can do so whenever you want.