Owner Operated: Things You Should Know Before Starting a Small Trucking Business

Many truckers dream of starting their own trucking business. But, it can be hard. So, here’s what you should think about before you begin the process.

Do You Really Want This?

A lot of people are turned on by the idea of owning a transport business or getting into the business working for someone else. Driving is easy, right? Well, not always. Anyone who has been behind the wheel of a big rig will tell you that driving truck is hard work.

Deadlines can be tight, you might be away from your family for a week at a time, and you have to work long hours, irregular schedules, and you’ll deal with traffic and loneliness. You may, occasionally, also have to load and unload heavy cargo.

But, if the single life appeals to you, and if you don’t mind being on the road a lot, it might be a great job for you.

Learn The Skills Of The Trade

There are many very good schools out there willing to teach you how to drive truck. And, while you might not initially think about it as a trade, it is.

Whatever school you select, make sure you understand what you’re getting yourself into. Choose a school that’s been around a while, and find a stable company to drive for. You will probably want to stick it out with a company for a year – at least.

Check Out Financing And Lease To Own Options

Like most things in life, you’ll probably need to finance your purchase. You need a big rig, and they’re expensive to own and maintain. If you’ve had problems paying your bills in the past, don’t worry. Many companies will work with you getting alternative financing such as freight factoring. Just make sure you read the fine print before making a commitment. Check out the company an financial institution offering the financing.

Are You Ready For The Paperwork?

There’s lot of paperwork involved in getting a trucking operation up and running. You’ll need things like fuel tax reporting, a way to track mileage, and some way to track your progress for each shipment. You will also need to stay on top of paying your taxes, routine vehicle maintenance, and other recordkeeping.

Get Insurance, and Don’t Forget To Pay Your Taxes

Don’t forget insurance and taxes. To really enjoy your job, you also don’t want your health to slide. It’s easy to get into the “trucker lifestyle” – poor diet, no exercise, and no social life.

Today, many truck stops have fitness equipment on hand for drivers to use. And, you’ll also find easier connection to doctors, nurses, chiropractors, and other healthcare professionals. So, you should never have an excuse for not getting your teeth cleaned, or your medications refilled, or working out.

You should also speak with an attorney, like Craig, Kelley & Faultless LLC about how to handle the inevitable: a truck wreck. If and when it happens, you want to be prepared.

Learn How To Manage Money

Finally, you should learn how to manage your money. Truckers tend to live a lonely life. And, because of that, they spend money as though there’s no tomorrow. But, with a little common sense, you can put away a significant portion of your paycheck for your future retirement.

And, if you’re diligent, you won’t have to work for very long to save up enough to fully retire. But if you have over spent and you have expenses piling up, you can use transportation factoring to get you out of a jam.

Maisie Kay is a law student who has an interest in business. She writes for a range of sites in her free time on law and business topics.

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