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Lease-to-Own - Frequently Asked Questions

What is a "lease-to-own" transaction?

In a lease-to-own transaction for American First Finance customers, we purchase merchandise and lease it to you, charging you rental payments in accordance with your agreement. While you take the merchandise home, we own the merchandise until you purchase it from us by exercising one of two options: 1. the Early Buyout Option; or 2. the Early Purchase Option.

What is an Early Buyout Option on a lease-to-own account?

The Early Buyout Option is an option to own the merchandise through paying off in full the cash price of the merchandise, sales tax, any Early Buyout Option fee, and applicable fees (e.g., Late Fees, Liability Damage Waiver (LDW) fees if LDW coverage was selected, and NSF fees) within the first 90 or 101 days of your lease-to-own agreement. Your exact Early Buyout Option Period is provided in your agreement, but you may also contact American First Finance and one of our representatives can provide this information to you.

You are not obligated to exercise the Early Buyout Option—it's completely optional.

What is an "Early Purchase Option" on lease-to-own accounts?

If you have a lease-to-own agreement but were not able to pay off your account within the Early Buyout Option Period, you can still save money on leasing fees by exercising the Early Purchase Option.

The Early Purchase Option is an opportunity described in your agreement to own your merchandise through paying off your full remaining balance, including the cash price of the merchandise, sales tax, leasing fees, and other applicable fees (e.g., Late Fees, Liability Damage Waiver (LDW) fees if LDW coverage was selected, and NSF fees) before the end of your agreement term.

You may exercise the Early Purchase Option after the Early Buyout Option ends and before the end of your agreement term. Refer to your agreement for the exact number of days of the Early Buyout Option Period.

Remember that an Early Purchase Option is not the same thing as a Early Buyout Option. You can view the description of the Early Buyout Option under the corresponding Frequently Asked Question, "What is an Early Buyout Option on a lease-to-own account?"

Will scheduled payments or automatic payments pay off the Early Buyout Option?

No. Since your regularly-scheduled payments are set to pay the Total Cost of Ownership over the full term of your agreement, which in the earliest cases could be a 6-month term, exercising the Early Buyout Option in an even shorter timeframe (e.g., 90 or 101 days) requires you to make higher payments than the regularly-scheduled payments in order to pay the full Early Buyout Option amount, which includes the cash price of the merchandise, sales tax, the Early Buyout Option Fee, and applicable fees (e.g., Late Fees, Liability Damage Waiver (LDW) fees if LDW coverage was selected, and NSF fees).

Refer to your agreement for the exact number of days of the Early Buyout Option Period, your term, and other important details.

Please note that automatic payments are set up only for regularly-scheduled payments. We are unable to set up automatic payments to pay off the Early Buyout Option price.

Do I own the merchandise starting on day 1 of my lease-to-own agreement?

No. A lease-to-own agreement starts with an initial term in which the merchandise is rented and cannot be purchased yet from American First Finance. After the end of the initial term, you may take advantage of the Early Buyout Option within the first 90 or 101 days, depending on your agreement, or exercise the Early Purchase Option set forth in your agreement. Exercising either the Early Buyout Option or the Early Purchase Option will enable you to purchase and own the merchandise in your possession, instead of just rent it.

Refer to the Frequently Asked Questions here for further details on the Early Buyout Option, the Early Purchase Option, and the Total Cost of Ownership for a lease-to-own transaction.

As a lease-to-own customer, is there a way to own the merchandise? How much would it cost to own the merchandise?

Yes—in fact, there are three possible options to own the merchandise on your lease-to-own account. After the end of the initial term, you may take advantage of the Early Buyout Option within the first 90 or 101 days, depending on your agreement, or, after the Early Buyout Option Period has passed and prior to the end of your agreement, you may exercise the Early Purchase Option. Exercising either the Early Buyout Option or the Early Purchase Option will enable you to own the merchandise in your possession, instead of just rent it. You may also own the merchandise by paying to the end of your agreement term.

Here's an example of how much it would cost to own your lease-to-own merchandise through exercising the Early Buyout Option.

To own merchandise with a cash price of $1,000, you may exercise the Early Buyout Option by paying off in the first 90 or 101 days (depending on your agreement) the sum of the $1,000 cash price, plus sales tax, a Early Buyout Option fee, and other applicable fees (e.g., LDW fees, Late Fees, and NSF fees).

Refer to your agreement for the exact number of days of the Early Buyout Option Period and other important details.

I'm finished using my merchandise and do not want to own it. How do I return it?

We facilitate rentals of new, high-quality merchandise. If you no longer choose to use or possess the merchandise and want to avoid future payments, you can terminate your lease at any time after your agreement's initial term by notifying American First Finance. Please contact American First Finance if you would like to discuss a return or surrender your leased merchandise.

Is there a "same as cash" option?

No. Products serviced by American First Finance are competitively priced. However, your product will cost more than the retail price or cash price since fees and charges apply in accordance with your agreement.

What cost(s) are included in my recurring, lease-to-own payment?

Your regularly-scheduled lease-to-own payment is called a "rental renewal payment" and includes the applicable leasing fees, cash price, sales tax, and a liability damage waiver fee (LDW) if LDW coverage for the merchandise was selected. If you paid a security deposit, your rental renewal payments would be decreased by the security deposit's amount. Applicable Late Fees and NSF fees would be added to your rental renewal payment.

All applicable fees and charges are clearly disclosed in your agreement. We encourage you to carefully read and understand the agreement before signing, and to re-review your agreement if you have questions at any time. We're also here to help if you have any questions.

Does a lease-to-own transaction have interest?

No, but lease-to-own transactions have notable leasing fees that are comparable in cost to interest-bearing products. Lease-to-own transactions do not have an interest rate because they are not loans or a type of credit. However, there are comparable costs that are passed to the customer.

Refer to the Frequently Asked Questions for information about the total cost of ownership for a lease-to-own transaction.

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