Doing my due diligence

Discussion in 'Ask An Owner Operator' started by eightballwoody, Jul 19, 2019.

  1. eightballwoody

    eightballwoody Light Load Member

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    I've been driving since 97.
    I'm kicking the tires on being a "local" o/o. I'm currently doing food service delivery (past 13 years same company).

    I'm thinking the leasing on is the way to go. Down here in Houston, intermodel and flatbed is very popular. I've been looking at trucks. Trying to stay 50k or less on the price. Seems to be plenty of those. Any advice as to what to expect for home every night and still a decent income. Currently I make about 70k annually. Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Scooter Jones

    Scooter Jones Road Train Member

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    70k and home every night? Stay right where you are, you'll sleep a lot a better ;-)
     
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  3. starmac

    starmac Road Train Member

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    Do lots of research before you quit your day job. I don't know how it is now, but the guys that used to haul cans down there were barely scraping by, and generally went bust after a while.
    I have a friend that runs a step fairly local and does well BUT he has been hooked up with some good oilfield folks for many years.
    There used to be a mercer agent north of town on I-45. I forget the exit or his name, but he may be someone to talk to, back then mercer guys would hang out in the lot for a week waiting on a load out of there, but wouldn't take short stuff that paid pretty good.
    Agents will all tell you little white lies, but if I remember right,he kept a chalkboard in there with his loads written on it, so you would have an idea just from walking in.
     
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  4. OldeSkool

    OldeSkool Medium Load Member

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    I own my truck and trailer and work locally. I know lots of guys that do. This is what my thought is. If you are wanting to do this for more money, just stay where you are. I pay myself $1,000 salary a week. I daresay most local owner operators are doing about that unless they work their butt off.
    If you want to do it for the freedom of being more your own boss, able to take off occasionally without a boss saying you can't and that kind of stuff then hammer down.
    To ever build up equity in old equipment is impossible, and probably any money you get built up in your business account will only mean a major breakdown is around the corner. Most local guys run around $10,000 in their business account if they're lucky. Many have less than that.
    Basically its not a money maker really. Its about being your own boss more than anything else. A hired hand can net the same amount for his personal income in a week as an O/O can afford to pay himself and stay local.
     
  5. eightballwoody

    eightballwoody Light Load Member

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    Everyone’s motivation will be different for doing this. Mine is simple. Do I want to hand truck for another 20 years? I need an exit strategy. So that’s why I’m kicking the tires now.
     
  6. Scooter Jones

    Scooter Jones Road Train Member

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    Yeppers, as an O/O myself, I can understand.

    Capacity is high and freight availability and rates are getting tighter.

    Be careful.
     
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  7. Chinatown

    Chinatown Road Train Member

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    A&R Transport has a terminal in Houston. Dry bulk, non-hazmat, tanker.Easiest work you'll ever do.
    www.drivewithar.com
    Good place for a company driver; don't know how well the 0/0's do there.
     
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  8. OldeSkool

    OldeSkool Medium Load Member

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    Well you've been doing it long enough to know you like driving truck. Local work can be tough to find. The good paying stuff is often seasonal. That's one thing to find out before you jump into something. I thought I had a good dedicated route when I bought my truck and a month later I was laid off indefinitely along with another new guy. Thankfully I was able to lease a different trailer until I could find work for my trailer again.
    Where I'm at now is not the most money I could be making every week, but it is steady year round work which is worth a lot to me.
    As was said in an earlier post the guy trying to recruit you will tell you what you want to hear, but it may not be that good. A guy just left here for "big" money and it hasn't worked like he planned.
    I'm not trying to discourage you, just give you a realistic picture. I wish I could have told myself this when I was wanting to buy a truck. When you find a haul ask the other drivers how long they've been there. When you start hearing 5 plus years set your hooks into that job and don't look across the fence for big money makers where the guys have been for 3 -6 months.
    Wish you the best of luck!!!!
     
  9. eightballwoody

    eightballwoody Light Load Member

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    I’ve actually said the same thing when guys are looking at companies. Find out how long the longest tenured people have been there. Then you’ll know how legit the company is.
     
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  10. Scooter Jones

    Scooter Jones Road Train Member

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    A&R.JPG
     
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