You promised yourself that you’d take that step to become a truck owner operator next year.
It’s next year. How to become a truck owner operator is the question. So let’s talk about moving into your own rig.
Recession: Time to Wait or Time to Jump In?
We know it’s a rough time for truck owner operators. Rates are down and available loads always drop during the first quarter of the year.
Do you think of those as deterrents – or opportunities to break into the market?
There are people who see the glass as half full and people who think that they want to take the risks. For those who want to step out, let’s talk about getting started with a trucking business with your name on it.
Truck Owner Operator owns their own truck
It’s not a smart move to just buy a truck without some time and miles under you. Maybe trucking isn’t for you. Don’t find that out after you take out a loan for equipment.
Allen Campbell, founder of TruckingOffice, drove for another trucking company for a while before getting his own truck. He says it was his best move, because he learned on someone else’s dime. Take a year work for a trucking company and learn the world you’re joining. Get the experience and understand what the job requires.
- Hours on the road can be tedious. If you don’t have the stamina for 14 hours per day, you’ll either have to decide to develop it or find a different job.
- Time away from family and friends. That’s often the greatest deterrent to people who don’t want to spend days away from home.
- Comfort. For some people, camping in a sleeper berth is not a problem.
Buy a truck, not sell your life
It’s sad that some truckers make the worst decisions how to buy a rig. They’ll sign a contract with a company that offers a “sweet deal” Lease Purchase. It includes not only financing the trucker’s purchase of a truck, but also guarantees loads. What isn’t clear in the contract that
- the rates may not cover the costs of hauling the freight,
- there may not be a right to refuse a load,
- all repairs must be done by their designated agents – who might not be the cheapest or the best.
In short, those companies are offering cheap freight transportation by cheating the truckers out of fair wages and options.
If you want to buy a truck to become a truck owner operator, keep your options open. There are always options. Borrowing from family or friends, or getting a loan from a financial institution is often better than a lease purchase.
We’re not saying that every lease purchase contract or company is bad. But there are bad actors out there. Ask around. Talk to some other truckers who have worked with the same company, but remember – the ones that had a bad experience are probably not around to talk to.
Get Your Own Authority
There are several steps and expenses to getting your own authority. You can certainly lease on to a trucking company until you get the funds together whether you’re handling the paperwork or hiring a company to do it for you. Being a truck owner operator should be a step by step process, letting you decide what you want to do and what you can afford.
The Tools You Need
Starting any business is expensive and takes time. Two tools you’ll absolutely need is a good trucking management system and an ELD. Start smart and start without paying hundreds of dollars more than you need. If you’re a solo truck owner operator, then TruckingOffice PRO and TruckingOffice ELD work together to help you build a success owner operator trucking business. Let us show you how!