Talk me out of it

Discussion in 'Ask An Owner Operator' started by pismelled, Nov 16, 2010.

  1. trukngrl

    trukngrl Lollipop, lollipop...

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    Manchester, Ga
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    Just coming into the industry the last thing you want to do is buy a truck on top of it. You already have the stress of trying to learn how to drive and keep up with a different way of life. You don't want the added stress of truck payments, insurance, fuel and everything else that comes with o/o. Go with a company that you can get experience from...after a couple years if your still bent on o/o then try it out
     
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  3. ironpony

    ironpony Road Train Member

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    Ask my GPS...
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    No, we don't assume you are a "moron." We are trying to let you know that more than likely you will be taken advantage of. The answer to "b" is the vast majority of offers like this are indeed, a scam.

    Lets be real... with 8 months experience under your belt, you have basically no experience. I'm willing to bet you've never run a business before either. Both of these points are crucial. With your level of experience, you probably can't efficiently operate a truck, and don't understand why you won't make a cent without being able to do so - whether or not the deal is a scam in the first place.

    Do you understand what kind of inspections one must undertake before you commit to buying a truck? Do you even know what to look for? If not, you're setting yourself up for the possibility of a major repair bill before you even get started. What if this truck has a problem that will require an in-frame overhaul within the next year? Do you have $20,000 socked-away to pay for something like that? How about tires? Can you afford to replace both steer tires next week?

    Lets talk about freight... do you know how flatbed freight is tied to the general economy? Do you understand how this will effect your cashflow? Lets say the economy takes a downturn... how long can you afford to make the truck payments (all of them, including insurance) without a steady source of loads? If this brokerage cannot supply you with adequate loads, do you have a plan for securing your own?

    These are just a few of the things an experienced driver must consider moving into the industry as an owner-operator. That someone would try to put this on an inexperienced person is the first major alarm bell that goes off with everyone on this forum, because so many inexperienced people have been totally screwed over by fast-operators in this industry. Get your CDL. Learn how to drive a truck efficiently - because your major controllable expense is fuel. Learn the economics of the industry segment you want to participate in, and learn how to run a business - just because you can drive a truck doesn't mean you can make enough money to support it. Make the contacts necessary to find the freight to support that business.

    What you are contemplating doing here is courting financial disaster. Understand that the deck is stacked against you from the start; you might luck out, but the odds are that you won't.

    If nothing else, make sure you can afford bus fare home. If that O/O decides he doesn't like you, you may find yourself alone, sitting in a truckstop parking lot with all of your possesions 1000 miles from home.
     
    pismelled Thanks this.
  4. walleye

    walleye Road Train Member

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    Land of Cheese
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    Nah,....Don't listen to these folks,...It's all sunshine and roses!!!

    Go ahead and learn a very expensive lesson,..The kind you don't learn in school,.........
     
    Big John Thanks this.
  5. bigo1969

    bigo1969 Light Load Member

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    Sep 29, 2007
    florida
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    Don't, do it. I, myself, have been an o/o for the last year. There's been some up and down times, but doing good at this moment, but like everyone say's your only 1 breakdown from the poor house. Good luck whatever you decide.
     
  6. pismelled

    pismelled Bobtail Member

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    Sep 28, 2010
    Vancouver, Washington
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    To summarize the responses I've received:

    1) I'm stupid, a moron, an idiot, etc.
    2) I know nothing about trucks or trucking
    3) I know nothing about running a business
    4) I will fail, like the majority of people who try
    5) I don't have enough money
    6) I won't make enough money
    7) I will get screwed by my school
    8) It's too risky for me to try
    9) Finally, I haven't "paid my dues" by working for years as an under-paid company driver yet.

    This is quite a bit of information to consider, and I thank everyone for taking the time to respond. If I missed any points that were mentioned, or if there is anything else that should be on this list, please let me know.
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2010
  7. Moosetek13

    Moosetek13 Road Train Member

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    Nov 1, 2010
    Burnsville, MN
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    I say go for it.

    It is obvious by your posts that you are both intelligent and savvy, and since you choose to disregard warnings of financial disaster due to maintenance or breakdowns you must also be fairly well off.


    I'm sure your general 'life experience' will make up for any lack of actual trucking experience, judging from your well thought out discussions thus far.
     
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  8. ironpony

    ironpony Road Train Member

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    Ask my GPS...
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    You came here asking us to "talk you out of it." Obviously, you don't want to be "talked out of it." If you have enough experience go for it, but know that the odds are against you - and the industry is full of con-artists looking for someone exactly like you - exactly for the reasons outlined here. If you don't want our advice... fine - its your life and good luck. But there are many posters here who come with the same story, do the same thing, and get screwed. Postive outcomes to something like this are very rare.

    Here's a simple test. If this is "the real deal" then they have enough money behind them to support an employee - because that's what you will be while training with that O/O and receiving that $300 per week. Simply ask them how they are going to deal with your taxes...

    If at least the training part is above board, they will respond by saying that they will withhold payroll, SS and Medicare taxes - and you'll get a W2 next year. If they are a fly-by-night operation, they'll want to cheap it out by evading their legal responsibilities to the IRS; their response will be something along the lines of since you're going to be an O/O (or independent contractor) you will be responsible for your own taxes, and you'll get a W9. That is illegal, because in no way would you pass the "tests" that the IRS places on that sort of tax status during your training - and this is a common dodge to keep costs down. Also, make sure you find out about the mechanical condition of that truck before you sign anything. Getting a full ECM dump, taking it to an independent mechanic and putting it on a dyno would be the bare minimum.

    Make sure you have enough cash in your pocket to buy a bus ticket... you may need it.
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2010
  9. PeterbiltLover

    PeterbiltLover Light Load Member

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    May 19, 2010
    Sharptown, Maryland
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    Did it ever occur that he MAY be mechanically incline? I'll almost guarantee you 99.9% of O/O's out there wouldnt know where the radiator hose is on the truck much less how to work on it. So wouldnt you say most of the money getting dumped out of somebodys pocket is coming from a driver who has no clue what so ever how to work on anything? Now granted loads may be scarce but then again what do you plan on pulling. 2nd. I know #### good and well fuel aint cheap but im guessing nobody in the trucking industry is smart enough to know how to get it down...(pssst...swift schneider werner usxpress prime...park all the trucks for about a week see what happens). I came from a long line of truckers my pa has over 40 yrs under his belt he taught me everything i know...i didnt have to go through a school...i feel as though if i want i can go out here tomorrow and buy a truck...dont want to right now but i have the knowledge knowing i could...and finally i have the mechanical abilities i could do mostly 75% of the repairs not all dont take it im the worlds greatest mechanic but i know enough.
     
    pismelled Thanks this.
  10. bigo1969

    bigo1969 Light Load Member

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    Sep 29, 2007
    florida
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    I get what your saying, but alot times those breakdown's happen thousand of miles from home, when you least expect it. Now your at the mercy of someone on the road to get you going and you know how that can be (bend over and grab your ankles)
     
  11. Dryver

    Dryver Road Train Member

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    Sioux Falls, SD
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    What's Pharmphail up to these days?
     
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