Looking for up-to-date info on starting a new business

Discussion in 'Car Hauler and Auto Carrier Trucking Forum' started by RJTX, Feb 14, 2018.

  1. RJTX

    RJTX Bobtail Member

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    Hey folks, this is my first post. I've read some of the older threads and I'd like to see if there is some more up to date gouge.

    I am looking into purchasing an 8-10 car stinger and starting a car hauling business. I am looking at spending around 30-40k on equipment with additional funds set aside for unexpected emergencies. I am also looking into partnering up with another business owner, though he only dispatches his loads, he has a driver and also a full-time job. My truck would go under his authority, at least to see how it all goes before making a decision on whether or not to pursue our own.

    My potential partner shared some of his returns with me, and I'm curious to see what others are doing. How would you proceed in this case? It's not an option for me to drive. I am a pilot for a major airline, so I do not need this business for me and my family to survive on. That's why I also wouldn't be accepting subpar paying loads - just don't need it to survive and/or make payments and I have no desire to contribute to lower compensation. Either the load pays the expenses and has a reasonable profit margin, or it doesn't. If it doesn't, I have no reason to spin my wheels, no pun intended there. Having said that, I do want to hire and retain a good, experienced car hauler who could help us set this up and grow this venture into something bigger.

    Some of the questions I have for you folks...

    What are the realistic returns using the above setup one could expect using Central Dispatch almost exclusively?

    What are the pros/cons of partnering up with someone vs. running the gamut on obtaining my own authority? What is the best option?

    I'm sure more questions will come up, but I'm hoping this will at least stimulate a good discussion.

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Brandt

    Brandt Road Train Member

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    I drove a company truck for 2 years hauling higher end cars. If you don't need the money and not driving the truck. I don't think would get I to car hauling.

    The company I drove for had old truck because from my understanding the truck are very expensive and almost half the miles they we drove we're empty. Then they started hauling cheaper cars. Just seem like no reason to take the risk.
     
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  3. LBZ

    LBZ Road Train Member

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    You may luck out & find an older truck that is solid mechanically as well as structurally sound for that kind of money. But would be an extremely rare find. Then finding a driver to take care of it while you are far away would be much more complicated.

    Have not seen Central in 6 months. But last I knew it was dirt cheap. Also with cars, if you are pulling from several locations via central, your driver may have to unload & reload several times to get the vehicles where they will fit. Adds delays as well as increases the chance of damaging something.

    Nothing is impossible. But with the luck something like this would take...invest in lotto tickets. ;)
     
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  4. jeffman164

    jeffman164 Light Load Member

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    Way too many obstacles if uninformed and trying to start car hauling business - especially if being a silent owner .
     
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  5. RJTX

    RJTX Bobtail Member

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    Everyone was a beginner at some point, and that’s why I’m here to learn from the pros... any specific advice or pointing out things to be wary of are greatly appreciated.

     
  6. Banker

    Banker Road Train Member

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    I can’t give you any info on central dispatch, as I don’t haul used cars. But knowing what I do after 30 years of trucking, 6 hauling cars and over 32 investing heavily in the stock market, I will give you my opinion.
    If you were a friend of mine I would strongly recommend you invest your money in the stock market or something you are familiar with and run from this headache of a plan. With what you have told us it would be difficult for you to turn a profit as an absentee owner, much less make a good return for the hassle factor you undoubtedly will have. A “good” car hauler will command roughly $100,000, will get either a pension or 401k and will be driving a new rig. If he works for a union carrier he will have a pension and fully paid insurance and may not have a newer rig as a trade off. The driver that will be looking to drive a 12-15 year old car hauler will cost you more than you will make because he probably isn’t able to get a premium car hauling job.
    If your potential business partner is already successful at this, you could possibly be the exception if he is willing to spearhead this plan. If he is willing to run your trucking business, then why wouldn’t he just add a second rig and keep the profits?
    Flying a jumbo jet looks easy from the outside looking in, but we all know that there is much more to it than what it appears. Some people do luck in to making money on things they know absolutely nothing about, but not very often. I am often the odd ball on this forum who goes against conventional thinking. However I am a realist and if I were in your shoes knowing what I know now, I wouldn’t do it.
     
  7. RJTX

    RJTX Bobtail Member

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    Thank you for your post Banker.

    I already invest in the stock market. My 401k gets maxed out every year and I hit 415c limits. I also do some stocks and even trade cryptocurrency. But I would really like to start a successful business on the side that could hopefully produce returns similar to my income as a pilot.

    My potential partner is also an airline pilot. As such, he is hamstrung with the time needed to manage more than his two trucks. He also has another business interest as well. He is willing to let me operate under his authority for a certain monthly amount. As to why wouldn't he just get more on his own... good question. He identified a good market and he's done pretty well with it. He has two trucks. The issue from what I understand, is that he doesn't have the time to manage more than two. Interestingly, I approached him about this. He hasn't tried to talk me out of it at all, but instead shared what he knows and how goes about it. It sounded pretty good, and essentially I'd like to sort of duplicate his success, but in the process try to mitigate as much risk as possible and learn from other people's successes and mistakes. That's why I'm here on this forum.
     
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  8. BigBob410

    BigBob410 Heavy Load Member

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    As @Banker said. This is a tough business to be an absentee owner. You may get lucky and find a good car hauler who might be willing to put in the work for future concessions but he is going to be hard to find. I've been in car haul on and off since'95. I consider myself a "good car hauler". I make over $100k, haul brand new cars 99% of the time. I am home every weekend and have been with my current company since August and drive a nearly brand new truck and am slated to get a new one and this one only has 141,000 on the odometer.
    The problem with only spending that much on a truck (assuming you're thinking of buying a stinger) is whoever drives it is going to need to be very mechanically inclined. If you need to call for road service every time a line pops it's going to get pricey!!
    I'm not trying to be all doom and gloom. That's just my $.02. I am sure there will be a ton more responses. Good luck to you!!
     
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  9. NuCar Carrier

    NuCar Carrier Light Load Member

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    Remember when you first learned to fly at night and you looked down trying to find the airport and weren't sure if you were looking at an airport or a Wal Mart parking lot? I'm guessing you found the airport. With Central Dispatch you're looking at the WM parking lot.
    I'd be interested in seeing what you guys have going.
     
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  10. Banker

    Banker Road Train Member

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    Jeff Bezos or Warren Buffet never call me with a problem in the middle of the night or when I am doing my real job. However they have both made me smile recently. What happens when you are both flying and your driver falls off the rig and breaks his arm or worse? Then when you do find a way to get the truck unloaded and back home, the $2,000 a month insurance keeps right on going. The best of rigs will be in a shop for a couple weeks a year since shops never get you right in. A 12-15 year old truck will probably see a shop a month or better a year. Will you keep paying your only driver to sit home? If you don't he won't be with you for long. Also do you realize that a new car carrier costs nearly $300,000 and you are planning to buy one for $40,000. Maybe because much of the useful life is gone. There are many older trucks that are reliable, but they aren't usually for sale. They have been owned by the same company or driver since new. Just a few things to think about when you compare running a carhaul business to investing more in something with less hassle factor. I don't want you to think I am against someone owning one truck and hiring a driver, but under the best case scenario it would be difficult. If I were to become unable to operate my rig, it would be parked until sold. I would never consider putting a driver in it. Not worth the risk to me.
     
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