3 Things To Think About Before Becoming A Truck Driver Owner Operator
Truck driving is an occupation that is likely to always be in demand-- products will probably always need to be transported over the road from point A to point B. But as a truck driver, you may come to a point in your career when you may start thinking about being an owner operator-- a truck driver who owns his or her own rig and has more independence than being directly employed by a transportation company. If you are contemplating the switch to becoming an owner operator, make sure you keep the following things in mind:
Have a Good Amount of Savings in the Bank
Being a truck driver owner operator typically comes with more freedom, but there is also more financial responsibility. One of the first steps of becoming an owner operator is securing your own big rig. These trucks can be quite expensive, and it is a very good idea to have a healthy amount of cash on hand in order to put down a good down payment and be able to comfortably afford the monthly payments.
Decide if You Want to Be an Independent Owner Operator or Leased to a Carrier
As an owner operator, you will have to decide whether you want to be completely independent or lease your truck and services to a transportation carrier. If you lease out to a carrier, there is a good chance that the carrier will provide operating permits, a cash subsidy for fuel, license plates, trailers, and freight that needs to be transported. Some carriers may offer the chance to purchase health insurance through their group policy, but since you are not an employee of the company you will most likely have to pay the entire cost of you insurance premiums.
As an independent owner operator, you will be responsible for securing operating permits, license plates, and trailers, and you will pay for your own fuel; on the other hand, you will keep all of the profits, and not have to deal with any of the politics or rules and regulations of a large transportation company. Some experienced truckers think that it can be a good idea to start off as an owner operator by leasing to a carrier, and then transition to an independent owner operator as you become used to working as an owner operator and make connections to find your own contracts to transport freight.
Be Prepared and Have a Long Term Plan
Being a truck driver owner operator can e very rewarding and lucrative, but it can take time and a lot of effort to become successful. If you make the leap to become an owner operator you should have a long term plan, as well as the patience and work ethic to get where you want to be in your career. Click here for more information on owner operator jobs.