I am considering driving for a living. I have owned a couple of different business' in the past. Did well in both of them. I am self employed in a skilled trade right now but my longevity is in question with that. (knees getting a bit week).
I owned a Landscape company for several years and did delivery of materials and goods. Mostly with a dump truck and straight truck. I really enjoyed that part of it. I have delivered fifth wheel campers and other goods on a part time basis as well.
I do have my CDL ABCD with air brakes.
I would like to drive reginal and maybe some OTR. Would like to be home some weekends when possible. Still have a mostly now grown family at home.
With my experience as a driver, I should be looking to work for a company as a company driver. I don't know everything and still might need some training. I have basic knowledge of trucks and trailers and the road, but can always learn more.
As a business owner and middle aged person, I want nothing to do with 39 cents a mile at best. I want to own a used truck and maybe lease on with someone for a short time and maybe be on my own or stay leased on. Which ever would work best at that time.
I do have my own authority, but not activated as I have not pulled the pin on insurance. I was planning to haul RV's across country, but not sure yet. Some of the numbers I have seen hardly make sense when figuring actual expense and depreciation. I'm sure some do it sucessfully, just have not seen it.
As most companies want a min. 6 months to 2 years OTR experience, I'd be kinda stuck with full blown training.
I've had my license for several years and have clean driving etc. No issues there.
Just wondering from you, your thoughts, on my best route to take. ????
Need some advice from the Pro's
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A clean MVR is a good start.
Google the term "Lease." For some, it works. But for the majority, well, like I said, just google it here within the site.
You say you have a CDL A. Did you ever attend a bona fide place of instruction? It could very well affect your options and choices.
If you want the option of going or getting on with a company, keep in mind most will not count any experience short of OTR multi state (# of states goes with said company) Most don't and won't accept straight trucks or dumps. Some go as far as day cabs.
There are companies out there that do have "In House" programs to get you up to their standards, whether you have graduated from an approved course of instruction or not, and some don't require it. You will be starting off at square one however. Square one and the distance to square two depends on your background. All it takes is a little leg work to find them.
Someone else can speak to you regarding the O/O end of things as I'm not even remotely qualified, as I'm sitting here with my lunch wondering if I have enough change for a Coke.....
No, I did not ever have any qualified school training. I've driven trucks and operated equipment most of my adult life. Needed an A license when I had my Landscape business.
Also, want to clarify, I know many people drive for a company and may get 39 cents a mile or less. Or a little more. I'm not knocking that at all.
I just like the idea of ownership and can set my own schedule without forced dispatch, etc. I would expand to additional trucks as soon as work load allowed it. I guess I need a certain amount of stress in my life to function. lol
My suggestion is start company get a good feel for the industry. Learn all you can keep track of all truck expenses as s company driver, this way you have a good idea of operating costs. Some start as o/o or l/p, but I never recommend it and I'm a third generation truck driver.
I have been doing lots of research into being a O/O right out of the gate with a new truck.
The first thing I have run into is the insurance cost. It appears the insurance will cost around 1200-1600 a month for a driver with zero experience.
Now you factor in everything else and you will probably spend 11-13,000 a month on expenses.
Of course though if you know what you are doing you can make that back. From people I have learned from they made somewhere between 140-160,000 dollars a year. However with all the costs and everything they put about 45,000 in there pocket.
So you will make tons of money but the truck will consume a vast majority of your made money.
This is just a few examples that I know of and I am sure there are people who make way more than that and put way more money in there pockets.
Also remember being a O/O right out of the gate is totally against the grain of the trucking industry.
If you are determined to enter into Trucking as a driver, I would suggest that you DO NOT start with a new Truck and start as an Owner Operator.
Start as a Company Driver, learn, listen then learn, listen some more.
As you noted, insurance costs alone will be very high, new trucks cost big money too.
Note that the people who insure and those who finance, see you as a large risk, perhaps even to the point of failure.
Dont start as a "slave" to the truck.
You will need to start with somebody who is willing to train you from this point on, maybe even start at the bottom with training and work up, either way, if you beleive that you will be starting at $.39/mile, you are being unrealistic.
Each of these situations have challenges of there own, watch out for the "pitfalls".
Take a look at this website & give them a call if it looks interesting.
drive4marten.com (click on "Contractors")
There are dozens of others, but, it's a start.
Marten Transport, Ltd.
129 Marten Street, Mondovi, WI 54755
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