Just starting out, need help.

Discussion in 'Ask An Owner Operator' started by tcloudy, Jul 29, 2021.

  1. tcloudy

    tcloudy Bobtail Member

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    I’m about to purchase my first truck and will be looking to lease on with a company. I’ve been a company driver for 14 years so I’m new to this side. From what I’ve gathered on the insurance I’ll only have to carry bobtail and physical damage as I’ll be under their public liability policy.
    My question pertains more toward IFTA, IRP plates, MC and DOT numbers. Do I as a leased on operator have to provide my own plates and file my own quarterly ifta taxes? If so, I’ll have to have my own DOT numbers before I apply for irp, is that correct? If you’re having to be responsible for all of this, why wouldn’t I just get my own authority if the only difference is the insurance. Can someone shed some light on this for me.
     
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  3. Ridgeline

    Ridgeline Road Train Member

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    Get your own plates, always.

    Ifta is up to the company and your contract.
     
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  4. TallJoe

    TallJoe Road Train Member

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    Because with own authority you really need to have cash reserves to cover at least a month without a pay (about 20-30K at easy access in the bank), unless you want to factor. As a matter of fact you should have at least two or 3 months reserves per OOIDA recommendation and also mine own.
    Fuel, inevitable repairs, and all the back office staff ranging from Safety to Accounting is on you. But assuming that this stuff is more or less possible to quickly learn, the most prohibitive thing for you as a new owner operator and a carrier at the same time, would be the cost of the auto liability insurance. AND IT IS NOT 'ONLY' - what if they quote you 25 -30K? When you're leased on, and depending where, they can assist you with fuel advances, repairs and you should have a weekly steady pay. You only focus on work and generating revenue and observing how the cost of running the truck works against the revenue. After some time at it, you'll make a sort of examination of conscience whether the decision of going o/o was right or not. If yes, then it is time for advancement. So maybe it is best not to overwhelm yourself with all the own authority aspects at the very beginning.
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2021
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  5. tcloudy

    tcloudy Bobtail Member

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    thanks for the feedback. I agree, leasing on and getting my feet wet is the best option. I’ve already gotten an insurance quote of $12500 for a year. A little under 10k if I paid it all upfront. I guess having a pristine driving record and CDL holder for 14 years helped. Regardless, I know nothing about this side other than what I’ve been researching and trying to learn myself. Driving a truck is the easy part, it’s all the paperwork that can bury you. Leasing on requires less of that so it seems that’s the smartest choice while starting out. I will have about 15-20k in reserves after truck purchase but I’d rather keep it there just in case.
     
  6. harold6091

    harold6091 Light Load Member

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  7. TrustedFR8

    TrustedFR8 Bobtail Member

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    Like everyone else has said try getting your own plates
    However
    It is also fine to save the money and get plates from the carrier you were leasing on with. A lot of times they can charge you weekly out of your settlements instead of paying it all up front so you can keep saving money.

    I also came over to owner off from being a company driver straightaway never did leave for lease purchase
     
  8. TrustedFR8

    TrustedFR8 Bobtail Member

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    Sorry hit reply

    Anyway if you are going to invest in Insurance might as well just go straight away get your own authority because the insurance is the last really expensive step.

    So if your leasing on with a carrier I suggest NOT doing this. Lease on with a carrier that does all this for you and still let's you work from load boards.

    With being an owner up and running a business you have a lot more responsibilities than being a company driver and it can be overwhelming to start with. That is why a lot of beginning owner-operators fail. The company you leased on with can help you with things such as unexpected repair costs when your radiator breaks down out of nowhere. They can also charge you weekly in increments for expensive things like your plates or your UCR. And if you are using load boards you can take that time to learn how working with brokers is how to negotiate your rates properly and build relationships with GOOD HONEST brokers. They can find you someone who has a dedicated Lane and from that point you can move up to getting your Authority and have already a steady cash flow instead of relying on the spot Market.

    Trust me when I say even with 14 years of experience the transition from company to owner op is going to be a rough one. There is a really big learning curve but I'm confident that you can be successful if you take the time to learn about lanes and rates, take care of your truck and build relationships with GOOD brokers.

    Good luck to you and stay safe
     
  9. tcloudy

    tcloudy Bobtail Member

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    Thanks a lot for the advice!! I know it’s going to be a huge learning curve but it’s always been the dream…gotta chase it
     
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  10. tcloudy

    tcloudy Bobtail Member

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    I’d prefer to just get my authority. The main part the steers me away from it is the yearly paperwork that needs to be filed. I’m still not completely clear on all that. Aren’t there companies that can handle that for you for a yearly fee? I’m fortunate that I’ll have some money stashed after I buy the truck and a wife that makes good money since it’ll be slow starting out.
     
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