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Questions about Business Contract Hire

You asked, we answered. Here are our most asked questions about our business contract hire for EVs.

Our business contract hire offers for EVs

On the fence about business contract hire for EVs? Look no further for some of the best EV business contract hire offers around.

What is Business Contract Hire for EVs?

Business Contract Hire (BCH) is essentially car leasing for small companies. It's ideal for you if pay yourself through dividends. It's perfect for sole traders, limited companies, and partnerships. Our offer is a great way for small companies to make the switch to electric.

How does Business Contract Hire work?

You pick your EV, choose your mileage and length of the contract, choose your payment plan and get a background check from us - and you should be ready to roll!

Are there any BCH handling fees, or extra fees for setup or admin?

No, unlike other BCH providers we don't charge extra for this.

Are EV chargers included with Business Contract Hire?

No, you'll need to pay for an EV charger separately. But you can get your charger installed by expert Octopus engineers, check out our chargers here.

Is maintenance included with BCH?

Our BCH contract comes with an optional maintenance package that you can add to the lease at an additional cost.

Why would I choose BCH over a salary sacrifice?

It depends on your circumstances, but if you have a small workforce or don't pay your team a salary, as a business, you can make bigger tax savings by choosing BCH. Including 100% of VAT for maintenance costs and 50% of VAT for your electric vehicle lease.

How do I get the free 5,000 miles?

To get the 5,000 free miles you'll need to switch to Intelligent Octopus, the energy tariff for EV drivers. It's especially designed for EV charging and keeping costs low. Find out more here.

Can you take over a BCH order I've already placed?

It depends, but usually it's a yes! We can take over all Tesla and Polestar orders, and can usually take over orders from other dealers, but these are on a case-by-case basis.

How do I get Business Contract Hire?

Start your journey here by getting a quote. You can choose your EV and the length of your contract. We'll then be in touch to go through your options in more detail and finalise what you're looking for.

What is the difference between BCH and PCH?

BCH contracts are only available for businesses and usually at a lower monthly cost, but work in a similar way to PCH with a contract for a fixed period of time, monthly payments then return the EV at the end of the agreement.

At Octopus Electric Vehicles, prices for BCH do not include the VAT and PCH includes things like maintenance and the charger, making PCH the payment look higher.

How does BCH work if you are a director and pay yourself in dividends?

It works exactly the same as if you were running a business with employees. Office or garden shed, BCH is for all sizes of businesses. The business essentially pays for the car, not the individual.

How does BiK (Benefit in Kind) work if I'm a Director and pay myself in dividends?

You'll pay 2% BiK rate (or company car tax)on any EV Business Contract Hire agreement, no matter how you get paid. With BCH you'll pay this on the portion of the company's tax rather than your salary, as you would with a salary sacrifice scheme.

Is a hard credit check done on the customer for BCH?

No hard credit check will be done on you, the customer, but a soft credit check will be done on the directors of the company. A hard credit check is done on the company or business as this is a business contract hire and is based on info held by credit safe (a credit referencing agency).

Who owns the vehicle under a Business Contract Hire lease?

The finance provider remains the owner of the vehicle during the lease. Your business leases it but isn't the legal owner.

Is my company eligible for Business Contract Hire?

If you are a sole trader, partnership, or a limited company you should be. Obviously, there are credit checks in place before we hand the keys over to a shiny new EV. You'll fill in a credit application, send in your company accounts and you will have a definite decision within 14 days.

Is Business Contract Hire tax deductible?

Yes, to an extent. Assuming you're VAT registered, you can claim 50% off VAT on the contract hire, 100% off VAT on maintenance and 100% off VAT on commercial vehicles.

Can you use a business lease car for personal use?

Yes, you lease the vehicle through your company, but of course you can still take a trip to the supermarket with it.

Is Business Contract Hire only for businesses?

Yes. You need to either be a sole-trader, pay yourself through dividends, be a limited company, or a partnership to use BCH.

Is Business Contract Hire a lease?

Yes, BCH is a long term electric vehicle lease for businesses.

Do you pay VAT on Business Contract Hire?

Yes, but you can claim a lot of it back! 50% off VAT on the contract hire, 100% off VAT on maintenance and 100% off VAT on commercial vehicles.

Can any business lease a car?

As long as you're either a sole-trader, pay yourself through dividends, are a limited company, or a partnership you can get a BCH agreement. Gardening for weeds in people's gardens? Get BCH. Buy gardening equipment on an international scale? Get BCH.

What happens when my BCH contract ends?

We’ll take the car off your hands and you’re free to choose a new car lease contract or simply move on with your life. The only obligation you'd have is to pay any excess mileage or damage fees.

If you're on brokered BCH deal, you can speak directly to the funder when your contract ends, to sort out the above.

Can I customise my car on business contract hire?

It depends. Not all vehicles are available for customisation and might be available ‘as is’ with standard options. Some have all types of fun gadgets and requirements to choose from, but be aware these will reflect in your monthly rental fee and add time to your delivery date. All options must be added before the BCH agreement is final.

How many miles can I drive on a BCH contract?

We offer a selection of mileage options in our BCH contracts, they start as low as 5,000 miles a year (this will stay fixed for the duration of the contract) to keep your monthly fee as low as possible.

Reminder: if you go over your agreed mileage and you'll have to pay extra fees.

What initial rental (deposit) do I need to put down for a BCH contract?

We wish we could give you a number but it depends. The cost of the car, the length of the contract, the annual mileage all play a part in determining the upfront cost of your contract.

Do I have to pay for a MOT?

No, you don’t have to take your EV for a MOT until it's 3 years old. If your contract goes on longer than 3 years, our BCH contract comes with an optional maintenance package that can be added to the lease at an additional cost to cover this.

Do I get a replacement car to use if I've been in an accident?

Check with your insurance company and the body shop repairing your car to supply you with a replacement vehicle. We don’t provide any spare ones for these situations, unfortunately.

Why are the costs of BCH lower than other contracts?

There are quite a few reasons why a BCH lease is cost efficient:

  • Other finance options like PCH usually have higher upfront costs and monthly payments due to higher risks
  • 50% of the VAT can be saved on the lease amount and 100% on the maintenance
  • You don't pay any road tax when you drive an EV
  • You don’t have to worry about the value of your car going down, with BCH there is no depreciation risk that you would have with owning a vehicle
Why is there a price difference between PCH and BCH?

For BCH VAT is not included in your monthly car leasing fee, other variations in price are depending on what length, mileage, and maintenance package you choose.

Are all the cars on BCH brand new?

Yes, squeaky clean and straight from the factory.

We order some EVs in batches upfront, so even if they are not freshly produced they have not been driven apart from the distance from the garage to you.

I have signed up to BCH and I am awaiting my vehicle. When do I insure it?

Just before we deliver it. We'll get in touch to arrange a suitable time and date and confirm all the details for your brand new EV, including your vehicle registration and all the details you need to sign up for business insurance for the vehicle.

None of the cars offered on BCH on your website suit me, can I choose another car?

We work hard to keep our website updated with all the latest EVs, but if nothing tickles your fancy please give us a call and we will try to find you something that's a better fit.

Is BCH very popular in the UK?

At the time of writing this, there are over 1.6 million leased vehicles in the UK, a huge increase over the last couple of years. More and more customers are recognising leasing as a convenient service with everything included, and car ownership is a possession that loses value over time.

What are my responsibilities during the BCH lease?

We need you to keep an eye on your estimated annual mileage and the general health of the car to avoid excess fees. You also need to insure your vehicle.

Our BCH contract comes with an optional maintenance package that can be added to the lease at an additional cost to cover servicing and maintenance, which we recommend to avoid surprise costs.

Is there an extra fee at the end of my BCH contract?

No. The funder will only charge you extra fees at the end of your BCH contract if you have exceeded anything in your contract like the agreed annual mileage or the car has been damaged beyond the previously agreed to wear and tear. The best way to avoid these fees is to read up on them before your contract starts so you are fully aware of what the limits are.

What is the maximum mileage allowance you offer for BCH?

Our maximum total contract mileage allowance is 120 000 miles.