If you are thinking about becoming an owner-operator we want to help you get on the right path. Starting a trucking business is not an easy task. It requires a lot of hard work, smart planning, and dedication. If you’re thinking about making the move to becoming an owner-operator, we have 8 keys to get you started
- Select A Niche
This is a very important decision. The trucking industry is quite extensive with a lot of opportunities for owner-operators. However, the area you choose should be suitable for you in both its requirements and your capabilities. Another thing to keep in mind when making this decision is the competition. If you select a market that is too saturated, there are high chances that your competitors will overperform you and the growth of your business will be slow. Therefore, you should make sure there is an opportunity for your business to not only be successful but to grow.
- Think Like A Boss
Think like a business owner. This means you need to think about things your employer thought about. Schedules, necessary equipment, finances, insurance, and employees are just a few of the top priorities. You will also face a number of challenges that you would not have faced as an employee, such as unforeseen circumstances with a customer as well as with your equipment. You will want to be ready to respond to these challenges professionally and efficiently.
- Financial Planning
This step is extremely important to make sure you do not go into excessive debt. Debt can be harmful to your creditworthiness, credit score, and the heartbeat of your business. You will initially need thousands of dollars to set up your new business. These funds will cover the purchase of equipment, insurance, fuel, hiring, etc. Having a Truck Loan, with the help of Trucking Funder, rather than spending all your capital in one spot, is beneficial not only to your working capital, but the loan itself is helping you build business credit and in some scenarios can be a write off for your business.
- Minimize Expenditures
As a new owner-operator, your main concern should be growing your business and making it as profitable as possible. A smart strategy, to begin with, is to focus on how to increase revenue while minimizing operational expenses. Large necessary expenses include fuel costs, vehicle insurance, maintenance, etc. These operational costs can be minimized for greater working capital. Schedules will help you minimize the waste of fuel and a Financial Broker such as Trucking Funder will help you find the best rates for financing your truck and necessary equipment. Personal Loans and Personal Insurance should not be used to cover your business.
- Selecting the Right Truck
The truck you choose for your business is key to your success. Your business is only as dependable as your truck. Your truck or trucks should be suitable for all the requirements of your selected niche. While all of the bells and whistles are exciting, it is imperative to select a truck that is not only dependable but capable. The last thing you need to address when starting a new business is why your money maker is not working or why it is holding you back. So gather all the information about what truck you will need to succeed in your niche. Once you have decided which truck is best for you, it’s time to work with Trucking Funder. As we talked about above, personal Loans should not be used to start your business, and using all of your Capital upfronts to start your business is not a wise choice. It is a smart, affordable, and beneficial decision to choose commercial financing to keep your capital as well as build your business credit.
- Required Licenses and Permits
According to the niche you have selected and the state or states you will be operating in, your business may require a different number of licenses and permits. Based on that, you may be required to obtain a CDL and other necessary permits like USDOT number, Motor carrier number, etc.
It may seem impossible at this moment, but this is why you do not want to unload your capital in one spot. Even if it is a small amount, make sure you are saving money every month personally and for your business. Remember, you may have planned for renewals, maintenance, and repairs, but you will also need to be prepared for unforeseen costs. Saving will always help save you.
- Choosing a Finance Company
A Financing Company, such as Trucking Funder, will be your best friend. Not only will we help you through the process but will do the digging to find you the best rate and terms for obtaining your truck. Being able to pay a loan back in small amounts while building your business credit rather than unloading your capital is one of the wisest decisions you can make for your business’s future!