Need some advice from the Pro's
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i would say start with one of those bogus lease/purchase companies, learn the hardway how to swim against the tide
it will give you a much better idea of the industry than being a company driver
it will not be easy, but in my opinion, its a clearer picture of how shark infested the waters may be
as a company driver, you are not really put up front and close with expenses, lanes, dispatchers, fuel costs, and the other nuances and nuisances that come from owning or partially owning a truck
as a company driver, if a light is broke, you call the shop, if a tire goes flat, you call the shop, if the clutch goes, you call the shop
but with these lease deals, you get a better understanding how important it is to watch every expense, pretrip, maintenance issues, and so forth
i know my advice is not what everyone else says
but i rarely follow the crowd in anything
Not a pro but I thought I should weighing-
"A fool and his money are soon parted". I was gung ho to buy my own truck and not have anybody else living off my sweat. But this old saying kept popping up and I decided to work for someone else before I dropped 200 grand on equipment. I can say that not one day has gone by that I haven't learned something. I'm pretty proud of the choices I made and the money I've made. Ive made more money than some o/o and done it driving new equipment I didn't have the stress of an investment tying me to a job that I didn't know if I would like. I had an office of "been there done it"people who I could tap for advice whether it was a heads up for loading an awkward piece of equipment or cheerleaders when I had to chain up in my second month of driving. If you think this is handholding and you don't need it- well, only a fool doesn't make use of all their resources.
I've used the word fool a few times and I don't mean that you are a fool but you sure don't want to look back and think that you were.
i hope you enjoy the industry as much as I have and keep us posted on your successes.
Thanks for the great info and advice.
I checked out the Marten site. Its possible.
I have thought about rv transport. Tnought about hot shot loads too. Just my desire has always been to drive a semi truck.
Just to clarify, i never intended to spend 200k or buy a new truck.
I will keep reading your posts.
I have not always taken the easy or right path, so i am doing a little more research this time.
I believe you said your in the trades, Knees hurt, definitely must be a carpenter, I would stick with that. These days trucking is for joy riding, not going to pay for a long time, till you get experience. Experience is only by time. Our son -in - law is going to Libya for 3 years to build a state of the art Power Plant. They built an airport right next to it, and he will be living in a Mobile home for 3 years there. They are Paying him MILLIONS to do this. He said when he gets back, he is retiring. He is 40 years old.
I just like the idea of ownership and can set my own schedule without forced dispatch, etc.
Don't we all....but you can forget that too. Most carriers will not allow you to cherry pick days off, holidays , freight loads etc. You can refuse a load if you want but that's doesn't fly well either. It's a short lived victory.
Consider your business model again. If your semi-retired ( like me ) and want to drive casual then work for a driving service. No? Still have to buy one? ok, then work for yourself with a broker.
Buy a dump truck..... 16 yd dump with a plow rig for snow and ta-da, you can work all year when you want. Throw a sander in the back for more options.......
Haul cans and pigs off the rail. They don't really care if you show up or what your stuff looks like....another option.
JMOLonesome Thanks this.
Most carriers will not hire an inexperienced driver as an owner operator. You could run your own authority, but there is an expensive learning curve to this business. Driving a company truck for a year or two is a good investment of your time and will save you thousands of dollars in learning and insurance premiums. Most carriers require owner operators to have from 6 months to 2 years experience before leasing them onto their authority. While the starting pay for inexperienced drivers is not that great, consider it as paying your dues. It is much less expensive to learn on the other guys nickel than your own. If you do decide to proceed to owning your own truck without experience, you should have deep pockets to see you through the learning process. I owned other businesses and worked as a company driver before buying my first truck. Even with business and driving experience, the learning begins once you buy your first truck. Good luck whatever you decide to do.
Not sure if you would really want to hear the truth or not. I'll lay it down but have a feeling you won't believe what I tell you.
Though you have a license most companies are not going to hire you unless you attend an accredited school. Many things have changed in the trucking industry and regulations are at their absolute highest right now. The insurance companies dictate what the trucking companies are allowed to do and this is why they want you to go through school for a certain amount of mandatory hours.
$.39 a mile, yes you are right you will not be making anywhere near that much!
Leasing or buying a truck... Personally have done both. As a solo driver who wants to be home on weekends this really isn't an option. If you are going the route of possibly buying a truck then drive company for a year until you have some good experience. As a business man you should already know that is your best route. A good business man never jumps into anything blindly. During that year as a company driver keep track of everything you do. You may find you will make more as a company driver. If you still want to buy a truck you now have all the facts and figures you need to draw up your business plan. You will have also made many good brokerage contacts by now and know who and where to get the best freight. As a good business man make sure to have an exit strategy with that biz plan too. This will be helpful for financing. Another plus of driving company for a year is your insurance. Your insurance is going to be outrageous without having any legitimate experience.
If I were you I would look into other avenues. Sounds as if you are more of an entrepreneur than a trucker. Do you want some insight on what's hot for hauling in WI? Try horses! Many, many very high end hunter jumper facilities in WI, IL, MN and IN. There's a great place in Chicago that builds custom commercial horse trailers. The economy doesn't affect the people that own these facilities! Check this out....
Just some ideas man....EZ Money Thanks this.
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