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Rent or buy a cash register?

Reading time: 5 mins

Purchasing a cash register or point of sale is a significant investment that requires a certain amount of available cash. Renting is a practical, flexible alternative that is likely to attract many types of retailers especially as part of a takeover or start-up.

Ironically, when a retailer wants to buy a cash register, it is when the time comes to check out and pay the bill that the biggest hesitations arise.

More and more advanced, cash register equipment has become increasingly expensive, making renting a more attractive option compared to buying.

But technological advances have also been accompanied by commercial developments, which have lowered the price of some alternative cash register solutions.

The purchase/rental debate is, therefore, not easy to resolve.

What methods and packages are available? Under what conditions? What are the advantages of the various options? At the end of the day, is renting a cash register less expensive than a one-off purchase?

Cash register rental

Today, cash register rental is a popular solution for a wide range of professionals. It brings many advantages for an attractive initial investment. However, it is important to calculate the total investment represented by this solution according to how it will be used.

How cash register rental works

Cash register rental is based on a contract signed with an office equipment supplier, which is usually a specialist.

While manufacturers themselves offer rental packages, most contracts are taken out with independent suppliers.

The supplier usually offers a full package including the cash register, installation, set-up and maintenance.

A trial period is often available so the retailer can get to grips with how the cash register operates and potentially decide to go for different equipment better suited to their needs.

In all cases, the cash register can be changed mid-contract by beginning a new commitment period for the new equipment at no extra cost if the cash register remains in the same category.

It is worth noting that long-term contracts (over two, three, four or five years) are often associated with a purchase option at the end of the rental period.

The advantages of renting

Deciding to rent a cash register brings many benefits.

Here are some of the most important:

-  The low entry cost compared to buying,

-  Especially as all the equipment is usually included (handheld scanner, printer, screens, scales etc.),

-  The possibility of testing the equipment to ensure that the retailer is comfortable with it,

-  The possibility of changing equipment at no additional cost as your needs change,

-  The ease of getting started and maintenance as the supplier usually takes care of everything, sometimes even including training staff to use the cash register,

-  Flexibility, with seasonal rental packages that allow retailers who only need a cash register for a few weeks or days of the year not to ruin themselves by only paying for the equipment they really need, such as ephemeral points of sale, during trade fairs or in markets.

-  The fact that the renter can become the owner at the end of the contract in the case of leasing.

Rental rates for cash registers

The price for renting a cash register naturally depends on the model and also on the rental period.

Indeed, the longer the commitment period, the lower the monthly payments:

-  For rental of only one or two months, the price is unlikely to be under 100 per month for the cheapest models,

-  For rental over a year, you should expect to pay between 170 and 345 GBP per month for a fully-equipped model with all the accessories,

-  For rental over three or more years, prices can go down to 40 GBP per month.

Buying a cash register

Buying often appears more expensive – you still need to be aware of the new offers on the market and the alternatives.

How buying a cash register works – several possibilities

Buying a point of sale terminal does not necessarily mean buying a traditional cash register.

Among the factors to consider that can inflate the investment required, you should remember that:

-  Accessories must be added to the cash register,

-  A maintenance contract is highly recommended,

-  And even training in using the cash register,

-  Or expensive repairs in the event of technical issues,

-  For software, regular updates are essential, including those that take into account changes to the legislation, such as that which came into force in France in 2018.

That being said, some packages make it possible to minimise this investment:

-  The cash register can be bought second-hand and in perfect working order,

-  The purchase can be financed by the merchant's bank under conditions that are often more beneficial than renting from a specialist company,

-  It is now sometimes enough to add a software programme and the necessary accessories to a tablet to turn it into a cash register; this solution is more economical than buying specific equipment especially as the software itself can be rented!

The advantages of buying

Buying a point of sale terminal brings certain advantages:

-  The retailer selects the equipment and accessories they want,

-  They are not bound by a contract, which may be difficult to amend,

-  The cash register becomes a company asset,

-  The total investment appears to be less than the cost of renting after a certain amount of time.

The purchase price of cash registers

To illustrate the final point, let's take a detailed look at the cash register prices found on the market.

If we consider that a model at costs 1,350 GBP to buy will be rented for 60 GBP per month, the purchase pays for itself in less than two years.

And, at this price, we are talking about a mid-range model.

Entry-level models, which are very comprehensive, can be found for less than 600 GBP while the same models will be rented for close to 85 GBP per month for short-term contracts (for seasonal requirements, for example).

How to rent or buy a cash register

By completing our cash register quote request form, you can get in touch with specialist service providers who rent cash register equipment. They will then be able to send you customised proposals that suit your needs. It's quick, free and involves no commitment!

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