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Leasing a Phone vs. Buying One: The Pros and Cons

Community Manager

Leasing a phone vs buying.jpeg

Depending on how often you upgrade your phone, your financial situation, whether owning a phone outright – and immediately – is important to you, etc., choosing whether to lease or buy a cell phone can be a difficult decision. So today, let's take a brief look at the pros and cons of leasing a phone vs. buying one (as they pertain to the Sprint Flex/Lease program).



  • You can choose a cell phone on a lease-to-own basis, which means that if ultimately owning your device outright is important to you, doing so is easy.
  • If you're not concerned with actually owning your device, you can return your device at the end of your lease, then either lease another cell phone or buy one immediately. The choice is yours.
  • You can upgrade to a new device any time after 12 payments. (Annual upgrades are always included with our iPhone Forever, Galaxy Forever and Sprint Flex Deals programs at no additional charge.)
  • Regardless of whether you use our cell phone lease-to-own program or you buy your phone outright, you'll still have the option to enroll in our Total Equipment Protection plan within 30 days of activating or purchasing your device.



  • You won't own your phone immediately.
  • You'll have to make monthly payments – and if you prefer to keep your monthly expenditures at a minimum, you might prefer to simply purchase a phone outright.
  • The phone must be in good condition when you return it to Sprint. So, if you're particularly hard on your devices, you may want to consider whether leasing a phone vs. buying one is right for you.


If you're still on the fence about which solution is right for you, and you want to discuss the pros and cons of leasing a phone with Sprint, you can contact one of our Customer Service representatives at 1-866-275-1411.


I'm a Freedom Unlimited V17 and looking at doing upgrades for all 3 of my phones, but I don't really like the monthly amount I pay due to the cost of all the leased phones.  Trying to figure out if its better to just buy my phones outright.  What are the advantages to doing it both ways?

Some of the phones like to be upgraded each year some don't.  I wish I could put money down on each phone to reduce the monthly lease.  Can I do this, or is this option still gone with Sprint?  Other carriers allow this.

Can I purchase a phone from like Best Buy and bring it to Sprint? The plan I have, in the past they said I had to either go through Telesales or the Sprint store.

I keep getting ads to upgrade and it says the Note 9 is @$20 per month to finance, but then when I try to upgrade it tells me its over $41 a month to finance and small print states for new lines of service.  I don't want to increase my bill just lower the monthly total.  But if paying upfront over $2000 for 3 phones is my only option how does that work. What are current promotions that work with my plan?  I don't have the chat option with telesales-would rather chat then call.  Can you give me a link to chat with that area if no one can help me here.

What kind of specials can I get on phones at this time? We currently have Samsung lease phones Galaxy 8, Galaxy 8+ and Apple 7.

Thank you in advance for you answers.

Hey galaxs5. I'm sharing a link to a list of phone purchase options that might help further elaborate on the original post for Lease vs Buy. Ultimately I can't tell you what is best for YOU, but I can help you understand each option a bit better. SOLUTION: What are my phone purchase options?


With the Sprint Flex lease, it's giving you the option to get a phone for monthly installments with the option to buy the phone outright or trade-in and upgrade to a new device at 18 months. You aren't able to throw additional money at the Sprint Flex lease to reduce monthly costs, but if at any point in the lease you want to pay off the remaining amount of the phone to own it, you can do that.


If you buy your phone elsewhere (Best Buy, Apple, etc) you should be able to Bring-Your-Own-Device to Sprint. Check out this link for device eligibility with BYOD.  SOLUTION: Is My Phone Eligible for BYOD with Sprint?


As far as current deals available to you, definitely login to your account where you can view each device on your account and see what options are out there for upgrade. If you aren't keeping the old device, you can potentially get a reduced cost with a trade-in. 


Let me know if you have any additional questions!


"Sim card not Supported" iphone 7 plus

i have recently paid off all dues for my iphone 7  plus to sprint which was on lease and request sprint to unlock my device as i need to switch to different career ,after couple of days when i called back to know the status sprint representative said my phone was unlocked but when i tried to insert the T-mobile sim it says "Sim card not Supported" again i called them multiple times,chat with representative,visit sprint corporate store but no luck every time they said my phone is 100% unlocked and they can't do anything now.

i decided to reach out to apple support team ,they asked for IMEI number and verified my phone was not unlocked thats why i am facing issue and suggested me to reach out to sprint and even they sent me mail mentioning that my phone was not unlocked,still my issue not resolved and sprint not accepting that my phone is not unlocked.


i tried resetting network,factory reset ,but no luck ,apple says phone not unlocked ,sprint says its unlocked  and i am facing the issue.

i even tried to use that particular sim in my different unlocked phone and its working perfectly fine.

all the test and proof pointing sprint for the issue but they are not accepting.

Hi Brownjr90! I want to take a look at this for you.  Please send me a Private Message with the MEID of that iPhone 7 plus.