I wanted to post this for anyone considering Swift's lease purchase...
I am currently leasing from Swift right now. It is my second time leasing/working for them.
I leased a truck back in 2005. Ran my but off and did pretty well with them. Had early issues with the truck, but overall no problems. I traded in my lease truck and bought another truck elsewhere in 2007. I had a 2004 Columbia that I still owed $35,000 on and I got $41,000 when I traded it in. I went independent for a couple of years after that...
Things are rather different here now...
I came back in June 2010. Leased a 2010 International Pro Star that had 51,000 miles on it when I got it. I expected things to be as good as they were when I was here before. Wrong!
Planners here will dispatch company trucks over Owner/ops, company trucks get the longer loads and they feed the owner operators what is left. The Atlanta area and Dallas area planners are the worst. Best month I had wast last July, when I ran a little over 15,000 miles. Every month since has been barely over 11,000.
Also, the lease is a major scam now. Thanks to Jerry Moyes being back!
They have attached a "Stipulated Loss Value" to each truck lease. Essentially what this is, is a schedule of what it will cost you to buy the truck from them outright at any given time during the lease. Your buyout at the end of the lease is based on this "value."
To give you an example: My truck was valued at $102,875 when I began my lease. To this point, I have made 28 lease payments which amounts to $17,400 paid in. That would leave about $85,000 left on the remainder of the lease, right? NOPE! If I wanted to pay this truck off right now, I would have to pay Swift over $107,000 for it!
Essentially, what they have done is construct the lease so that your truck value is going up! It's ridiculous! There is no such thing as appreciation in value on any type of vehicle, car truck, etc. But Swift has found a way to do it. And it's legal too!
I was reading my lease a couple of weeks ago and noticed this deal about the "Stipulated Loss Value." Hey, shame on me for not paying attention to that clause in the contract when I signed. If I had read that clause correctly I would not have signed the lease!
Now, If I am stupid enough to complete this lease in February 2014, I will have paid in a little over $100,000 for the truck. To own the truck outright, I would then have to pay Swift an additional $48,990.
So, I pay $150,000 for a truck that was worth maybe $100,000 brand new...and will be worth maybe $15,000 to $20,000 when the lease is up and I owe the $48,990...
Well, I'm not that stupid...since recognizing this scam in my lease I have made plans to work elsewhere....
If you don't know about Jerry Moyes, he is the founder of Swift. About 7 years ago he got caught by the SEC backdating the options on Swift stock. Now Swift at the time wasn't a publicly traded company so all he was doing was cheating his own people out of millions. He reached an agreement with the SEC to step down and relinquish his majority ownership so he could keep himself out of prison. This was in 2004...
Swift's Board of Directors allowed Jerry Moyes to buy back his majority ownership in 2007. He has been back ever since, and made several changes in operations that are not conducive to success as an owner/op at Swift. The man is a crook...pure and simple.
Swift's leasing company, Interstate Leasing, is now a scam...it used to not be...I would stay away from them as far as lease purchase goes....
Frankly, I would stay away from any lease purchase...all you are doing is "renting" the truck. You aren't building any equity...you are throwing your money away. You are better off saving your money and buying a truck on your own.
Swift Transportation and their Lease Purchase Plan
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Not trying to defend Swift by any means. But if you borrowed $102,845.00 at the current rate of interest on a used truck, you would pay back 150K with principal and interest. So, what is the difference, except for the early payoff rate Swift has?
#1 NEVER READ YOUR OWN LEASE!
Well read it BUT, pay a lawyer and then sit down and have him explain it to you.
#2 A person who is his own lawyer or does his own legal work has a fool for a client!
#3 Lease purchase is bad! Bad lease, bad!
WOW! Swift has found a way to make a truck appreciate in value as it gets beat to death! They did it! They found the fountain of youth!
But that much to begin with? ROFLMAO! Sorry but Internationals and Freightliners aren't worth what they sell them for new but used? Again ROFLMFAO!dog-c Thanks this.
So....lemme get this straight...our O/P says he leased before, turned it in, went Independent, and, lo....he's back with Swift. Apparently, that Independent thingy didn't work out all that great or he wouldn't be back. And, as Rollover said (yes, I absolutely agree with you on this and will not argue this point) he didn't read or comprehend his lease agreement before signing it. Never, ever, ever, EVER sign a legal document before reading it.
November and December were both over 12.5 K mile months for me. October was 11.8 K. September was 11.9 K. Maybe not 15K, but I'm not complaining. January will be exceptionally skinny for me, but only because that's typical for January and I chose to take time off last week. But I planned ahead for it and am still doing well. Not Swift's fault if you can't plan ahead and run your own business. My clue you are not a businessman? You were Independent, had your own truck and traded it, owing 35, but getting 41. Net into your pocket: 6K and I'm sure that went directly to the down payment on whatever truck you bought...and probably lost.
If you are having trouble with miles, why aren't you talking to your DM about it? How often are you going home? For how long? Are you in a Comfort Zone or do you leave yourself open for all 48 Lower plus Canada? Are you setting money aside for skinny times, or are you spending every penny you bring in? Just a few questions I have.
I'm not going to talk smack about you the way you have about the guy who makes it possible for you to be in that truck. Until you actually have a chance to shake hands with your bread and butter, you have no standing to b**** about him.
You weren't with the company in 2007. Bob Cunningham had run it into the ground. Privatization was the only way to save it. Jerry Moyes did not want to see what he had worked so hard to build fall to ruins. So he bought back every single share for far more than market value at a huge loss to himself. And I saw, first-hand some very positive changes in office staff demeanor, facilities and services.
Don't like providing your own bath towel at the terminal? Wah! Didn't take the time to read your own contract? Wah! Wah! It's all Swift's fault, Waaahhhhh!!! Yet, here you are, still running your leased truck while b****ing about the very people who provide your living. Just get it over with. Turn in your truck and go work for.....I don't know...JB Hunt? Then come back in a few months and let us know how it's going.
fr8monkey Thanks this.
let me start with the first highlighted statement and work down. This happens when you DONT have a good working relationship with your DM and local planners. If you are labeled "picky", or only run in the south in the winter months, or wont take loads over 30k lbs., etc....then yeah, you better believe you should sit over a company driver who will take almost anything. Not saying that is what you do, but i've known lease ops who do that...then they wonder why they cant get back to phoenix and sit in Greer for 5 days because they wont take anything that isnt going west. you can be picky, but there has got to be a time where you would rather 'break even' than sit and go in the hole $150/day.
It is legal, because when you sign the lease, you make it legal. If they wrote in a clause that said you had to dress like a woman 1 day out of the week (if you're a guy that is), and you sign it....then shame on you for not reading it before you signed it.
and lastly...Maybe you should have picked up the lease and read it before 'a couple weeks ago'.
and i just did the math....so your weekly payments are $622 ??? or they are $522, and you're just adding on the downpayment? (which will drop off soon anyway, saving $400/mo.) if you're not taking into account your DP, and your base truck payment (with no DP) is in fact $622.....dude.....you're getting screwed, even worse than swift standards. =) your truck had better come with a 50k watt inverter, a full size fridge, a regulation size bar, olympic size swiming pool AND the high dive.
Hubby and I run as a team with a smaller company. When he ran solo as a lease op, we were barely making ends meet.
We've done OK as a team, and made some money last year, but we do things differently from some drivers. We don't refuse any load, unless it's obviously unprofitable (for instance, going to the New Jersey area). We drive day and night, in all kinds of weather, with just our one day off in a hotel each week. We stay out minimum three weeks at a time. We don't stop to watch television at terminals, or go home for holidays. We are careful about setting our ETA and available time, and we have a reputation for being on time and not making mistakes. We also have a good driver manager.
That's pretty much what it seems to take to make it work. If you're willing to do all of that, I would think that you could make it with any company. If not, maybe it's your manager, or you're in the wrong place at the wrong time, maybe. A switch might not be a bad idea. I certainly wouldn't judge it by the freight you're getting in January and February, though. I've heard that freight is picking up, and in fact we just got a call with some loads, so I'll be outta here soon, but it was so slow that we ended up bobtailing home from California and taking it easy for an extra week. I don't like to sit, and we normally don't. We're planning to just take January off next year.
I have some experience with Swift, don't really have anything bad to say about them, although I could amuse myself making jokes about them all day.Civilservant Thanks this.
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