Proposed trucking lifestyle: Feasible or not?

Discussion in 'Questions From New Drivers' started by rodcannon, Jul 3, 2008.

  1. roadkill4512

    roadkill4512 Medium Load Member

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    May 9, 2008
    Lancaster,PA
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    Rod, I was thinking along the same lines a year ago as I contemplated trucking.

    I discovered that I had less freedom, control and available time than I anticipated. For one your parking options are very limited when you drive a vehicle 75 foot long. I drove by so many places I wanted to stop and visit but hey where do I park this thing? Your parking options are pretty much limited to truck stops and company terminals. You can park in rest areas but many have time limits and they are not as secure. If you can manage to get 2 days off in a desirable location (big if) you can get a cab to a rental car agency and rent a car to see the sights. If you happen to be near an Enterprise car rental you can arrange to have them pick you up and you'll save the cab fare.

    The way I ran, any available time I had was spent doing laundry, paperwork, catching up on sleep or housekeeping duties inside my truck.

    If you get a lot of drop and hooks, get to run a regular schedule and only run 2500 miles a week you may fare better in accomplishing your objectives. I believe it can be done but in most cases it may be harder than what you may think. If you have no significant other or any other ties at home you will have more liberty to do as you please with the precious little off time you get.

    I admit my mistake in not taking advantage of opportunities was I didn't make any special requests to be routed to certain cities. I didn't take much time off and the two days a month I did take off my GF demanded on seeing me.

    If you get in with a larger company with many company terminals all over the country that would probably be your best bet. Make your requests known to your fleet manager. If you do leave your truck under a load be sure to use an abloy padlock on your trailer. Good luck with your tourist ambitions and let us know how you make out.

    PS.
    I did manage to be in downtown San Antonio during the final four weekend this year. Riverwalk, Alamo, block party with 1000's of college basketball fans amidst all the hoopla. So sometimes you do luckout!
     
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  3. capnhector

    capnhector Light Load Member

    i believe the current deduction for per diem is $52 per day away from home and $39 for days you leave and arrive at home but check with your cpa and if you dont have one find a good one that does alot of trucker taxes as they will know about all sorts of deductions (another forum search for the list i know its on here about 100 times)


    if you get per diem from your company you add up your standard per diem deduction of $52 a day for the days you are out then subtract what the company paid you in per diem to get your total deduction.
     
  4. Roadmedic

    Roadmedic Road Train Member

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    It is actually 52.00 per day in the US. 58.00 per day in Canada. You can take a part of the day for the day you leave and return home.

    A cpa is nice, but usually over priced. I would recommend an enrolled agent also. However, which ever you choose, make sure they understand trucking.

    Personally, I don't need to look for one. I spent my other life and continue to be a professional tax preparer. There is no doubt that I understand the trucking lifestyle and can handle my return.:biggrin_25514:
     
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  5. Lurchgs

    Lurchgs Road Train Member

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    Feb 13, 2008
    Denver, CO
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    LOL - want to do mine, too?

    I read somewhere that PerDiem can vary by the state.. and something to the effect that Colorado has one of the highest.

    I'll have to dig into this..

    Rod - I'd still keep the property... you don't need to be on hand for issues. Search up a property manager.. have the rent payment go into an account. some money from the account goes to the manager, the rest goes to taxes and the like - and repairs.

    Sure, the housing market will drop in the next few years.. but eventually it will go back up. Further, even if it doesn't - at SOME point you will want a place to park your TV. Why look for one when you have one already? (unless you flatly hate the location...)
     
  6. Roadmedic

    Roadmedic Road Train Member

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    The per diem for transportation workers such as us is the 52.00 per day for food. It allows you to quote use the average and not have to try and find where you were for the higher rates. It is in Pub 463.

    There are many other deductions that need to be counted as well. When in doubt, list it.

    As far as your return, I am not supposed to look for work on the postings. It would violate the forum rules. Have questions, you can pm me.
     
  7. Lurchgs

    Lurchgs Road Train Member

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    Denver, CO
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    Lol - sorry, didn't mean to make it sound like you might be trolling for work. I've been doing my own taxes for years - and the only times I've paid professionals to do it, they screwed it up. (no, I'm not trying to imply this would happen if I were to saddle you with my taxes - just stating my history). Being happy doing my own, I'll probably continue to do so - though I've never yet done them with me as a bulk transportation engineer.

    Never had to deal with PerDiem before.. Though I've already started a spreadsheet of my travels - state, full day, partial day (start), partial day (end). We'll see where that leaves me at the end of the year.

    Smile - it makes people worry about you.
     
  8. Roadmedic

    Roadmedic Road Train Member

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    As I said, feel free to pm if you have questions. I don't mind helping.
     
  9. Cerberus

    Cerberus Medium Load Member

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    roadmedic, have you ever thought about starting a thread and listing tax deductions that drivers can use. with you being a tax preparer and all this could be helpful to drivers that just dont knoe what can or cannot not be deducted. just a thought
     
  10. Roadmedic

    Roadmedic Road Train Member

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    It has been discussed on some threads before.

    My basic comment is:

    If bought for the truck, used by the truck then consider it.
     
  11. munrkr

    munrkr Medium Load Member

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    Dec 14, 2006
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    Turned into a perdiem thread, not a problem. But back to the original post from RodCannon. Two things, (1) I think first off, the ability to leave your truck someplace safe, secure, and with the full permission of your employer and the property owner is absolutely key. It seems like it would be a job in itself. And (2) I'm very curious about what it actually takes to satisfy a domicile requirement. I mean, you can rent a room at someone's house and the amount could be extremely low, and who's to say it's illegal?

    Also, someone mentioned per diem being different in various states. Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't this a Federal program? :biggrin_2551:
     
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