Typical contract duration varies between plans and providers.
Copier or printer service contracts are often chosen by businesses because of four reasons:
- The copier is needed just for a short time,
- Low rental fees make printers accessible for small businesses,
- The pricing of printer-and-maintenance contracts is usually attractive, as compared with other maintenance arrangements,
- All-inclusive, hardware and service plans are hassle-free solutions for businesses.
A service contract can be taken out with a specialist provider of printers and photocopiers to cover servicing, repairs and maintenance on printing equipment (often with the option of supplying all consumables monthly) for a set length of time. The minimum period for a printer-copier service contract is nearly always 12 months, up to an agreement for a maximum of 5 years.
This kind of plans, when they include hardware rental, make high-end copiers affordable for small businesses.
However, the longer the commitment, the more vital it is to bear in mind that:
- Contracts for printers are often based on “clicks”, that is, a minimum number of “intentions to print a page as manifested by a click on the computer”, which must be paid for every month no matter if it is actually used or not. In fact, this monthly volume is only relevant for the pricing when it’s exceeded and triggers additional charges.
- Reading and understanding the fine print is really an absolute must, as some printer hire contracts include options which will be useless to many businesses and punishing concepts of “maintenance”.
- Cost-per-page is the most important factor in order to understand the actual cost of the printer contract plan.
- Provided supplies like toners, paper, ink, staples may actually be far more expensive than if purchased separately. But changing these supplies yourself is often forbidden in some contracts, resulting in a breach of contract, sometimes even with penalties.
Take the time to compare the quotes from several suppliers in photocopiers before
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