Should I buy a truck straight out of school?

Discussion in 'Ask An Owner Operator' started by Boone1994, Apr 12, 2024.

  1. Boone1994

    Boone1994 Bobtail Member

    Apr 12, 2024

    I am new to the forum and not even in the industry yet. Im seeking opinions and advice from all you experts and thank you in advance for any feedback.

    At 30 years old i have done alot of thinking and realised i am most happy when im cruising on the open road. After talking to some friends in the industry i realised trucking might be the perfect career for me. Im 3 week in to cdl school and the instructors said im ready for the test next week.

    My main question is should i buy a truck straight out of cdl school?

    I have owned my own business for the past 6 years requiring running 6 pickup trucks with commercial insurance and big expenses. Some years my expenses have exceeded $450k. So naturally being an owner operator appeals to me.

    I will need to sell my business to get started in trucking and that should give me around $150k to play with. Ive got alot of experience turning wrenches and want to get a pre emmissions w900 and a 48' spread axle flatbed.

    I live just north of houston texas near huntsville and have a good friend who is a shipper for an oil and gas company who says she will start giving me loads as soon as im ready. I planned to use that and the load boards to get work, ideally doing mostly regional between the major texas cities and the west tx oilfields.

    Is it wise for me to jump in headfirst as an owner operator or should i take it slow and get hired on with a company to get some experience? I feel that i have alot in my favor with the business experience, mechanic experience, industry connections, and a good chunk of cash. But i still feel it might be better for me to get hired on with a company to start out. What do yall think?

    I really dont want to do otr as i have a wife and kids that i love seeing as much as possible. So if i try to get hired with a company i would be looking for a local job.

    Thank yall for any feedback and sorry for being long winded.

    Also one last question which is probably better asked to my insurance agent. But since i have had commercial auto insurance for the past 6 years would that record apply towards commercial insurance on a semi truck? I know high insurance is a big factor for new operators.
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  3. 86scotty

    86scotty Road Train Member

    Aug 27, 2017
  4. buddyd157

    buddyd157 Road Train Member

    May 25, 2017
    under a shade tree
    yes, yes absolutely buy your own truck, and forgo the time to learn.

    It's EASY, It's FUN, You'll Make Zillions of dollars..!!!!!
  5. PPDCT

    PPDCT Road Train Member

    Jun 15, 2017
    St. Paul, MN
    You're picking the absolute worst down cycle in years to get into trucking. On all sides of the equation, we are currently an industry that's *significantly* over-capacity, with anywhere from 50,000 to 100,000 too many carriers and tens of thousands too many brokerages.

    Don't sell your business. Keep your CDL. You don't know the industry, and no amount of wishful thinking is going to make up for that.

    If you think trucking is your ideal job because you're cruising the open road, you're looking at it all wrong. If you're hellbent on being a trucker, take the advice I give to people that are trying to enter my side of the industry: go learn on someone else's dime. That is, go work for someone else. See the kinds of ####-shows you have to deal with in order to make it work.
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2024
  6. bryan21384

    bryan21384 Road Train Member

    Sep 18, 2009
    Memphis, TN
    I think it's better to get on somewhere and learn first. If you'll get 150k from selling your business, that's really not a lot these days to get started. A truck, even an older one, will probably wipe out that entire 150k, even if you have to get road ready. Commercial insurance in a semi is going to be expensive because you're breaking into the business. You're friend that will give you loads, it sounds good, but the question is how much will he pay you to move loads? You've got a lot of competition in Texas to move loads. If you can drive for a company, and hang on to your business, that'd be the route I'd go if I were in your shoes.
    Rideandrepair and tscottme Thank this.
  7. roundhouse

    roundhouse Road Train Member

    Jul 11, 2018
    Your friend will give you access to the loads but what do they pay ?

    and is it enough for you to be profitable ?

    You mention using load boards and that’s bottom feeder leftover loads

    does your business with the six pickups give you access to shippers that need larger loads moved ?
  8. Big Road Skateboard

    Big Road Skateboard Road Train Member

    May 2, 2021
    Insurance might be tough with a new CDL. Is there something wrong with the other business? #'s don't sound right . Established business, 450k$ expenses one year, 6 trucks, but only worth 150k$?
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2024
  9. abyliks

    abyliks Road Train Member

    May 2, 2010
    ludlow MA
    I’ve seen guys do it, some made it, some didn’t, insurance is going to jam it in dry though

    what’s your current business? If it’s doing so good why don’t you get your license and start adding class 8 trucks to it? Adding is one thing, new venture is another
  10. Boone1994

    Boone1994 Bobtail Member

    Apr 12, 2024
    I appreciate the advice. My industry experienced the same thing its gone to absolute #### the past few years and all my competitors either went out of business or sold to giant private equity companies. Im getting out while i still can and even the local driving jobs are paying more than im making. I am hellbent on being a trucker haha ive tried alot of things and always worked my ### off i dont come from money. Its not just liking to drive i also like trucks and hate working behind a desk im blue collar. All my buddies in the industry said its a perfect fit for me with my skills and interests. But ill never know until i try and if i dont try then ill always wonder.
    NightWind and Rideandrepair Thank this.
  11. Boone1994

    Boone1994 Bobtail Member

    Apr 12, 2024
    Yeah the industrys gone to ####. Value is based on net not expenses. Too much expenses and headache for the money.
    Rideandrepair Thanks this.
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