Any business you start is going to require a good deal of startup capital but trucking can cost more than most simply because the average price for a new semi is well into the six figure bracket. Whether you are buying one truck or several trucks for your new venture, you will undoubtedly need to save money wherever possible.
These tips will help you discover a few ways to save money when starting out and may even give you a few ideas of your own to save even more money along the way. If you’re interested in more tips to get your business up and going, check out the article “How to Start a Trucking Company“.
Don’t Buy New When You Can Buy Used
So many people don’t like that word ‘used’ because it implies that something has been worn out, used to the point where it no longer served that person or company selling it. However, in trucking it’s a whole other ballgame. Trucking is more than a business for most. It’s a way of life. There is no one more passionate about what they do than a trucker, and to a trucker, the rig is like a best friend.
The point is, if a trucker is going to trade in a truck you can bet your bottom dollar that it has been taken care of and is most likely going to be in almost the same shape and running condition as it was on the day it was first bought. Truckers do love their trucks and although they are upgrading, it doesn’t mean that a ‘used’ truck has been overused! Why buy new when you can buy used for 1/5 or less the price of a new rig? When starting out, this is one of the best ways to save money – buy a previously owned truck.
Solving the Day Cab vs. Sleeper Dilemma
There is a definite cost difference as well between day cabs and sleepers. Day cabs don’t have that extra sleeping compartment which means they are smaller and, of course, cheaper to buy. Check out any Peterbilt daycab for sale and you will see that the difference is significant. Yes, it’s every trucker’s dream to have a rig where they can pull over and get a good night’s rest in the sleeper, but is it necessary? Not only does a sleeper rig cost more to buy, it costs more to operate as well. Consider the extra weight being pulled on the road and the saving in fuel alone is worth thinking about.
Unless you are going to be going out on the long haul, it makes more sense to start small with day cabs and in time you might want to add a sleeper to your fleet. For the lone trucker who is going to contract work from larger companies, a day cab might be the most cost-effective solution when starting out. If you factor in even an occasional night at a motel, it still is cheaper to buy and run a day cab so that might solve the dilemma once and for all. So then, while you’ll need to have a range of insurance coverage and other costs for running a startup, this is one area in which you can save. Buy a previously owned (and loved!) rig and if possible opt for a day cab. After that, the world’s an open road.