Trucking provides an essential service to every person and industry in the country. If you’ve been driving a while working for others, you may be thinking of expanding to start your own trucking business. To accomplish this goal, there are some major steps to think about, including the following!
Obtain Your Fleet
You may start with one truck or a dozen; that’s up to you. But you will have to decide whether to own or lease them. There are advantages and disadvantages to both. Buying the trucks outright will require a substantial down payment and will require financing up front. However, owning gives you a tangible asset and you can make any changes to the vehicles you wish. Leasing often means lower monthly payments, but you will never build equity. On the other hand, your vehicles will always be up to date with the latest technology. There may also be tax benefits to leasing. You will need to investigate the best option for your specific needs.
Get Insurance Coverage
Whether you own or lease, you will need to get good insurance coverage for your fleet. Standard policies generally include collision, comprehensive coverage, and liability. The amount of coverage and your deductibles will affect your monthly premium, but without adequate coverage, a simple accident could be an insurmountable expense. Don’t neglect the details such as roadside assistance. Small breakdowns, flat tires, dead batteries—these repairs can be done onsite. Tow insurance is also important. Semi-trucks are capable of being towed in the event of an emergency.
Understand the Legalities
You will need to know the legal issues when you form a trucking company. There are the standard legal issues to deal with when starting any business such as business licenses, incorporation or limited liability, tax identification numbers, and so on. But there are also legalities that are specific to the trucking industry. You will need to register with the US Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and obtain all permits related to the type of trucking you will do. You will also need to know regulations for weight, environmental requirements, and laws pertaining to your drivers.
If starting your own trucking business is your dream, you can achieve it with some planning. Just do your research, learn the basics of ownership, and think ahead, and you’ll soon be operating your own fleet.
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