Starting Own Trucking Authority......No CDL

Topic 24390 | Page 1

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Victor M.'s Comment
member avatar

I have very little experience in trucking or business. No CDL............nothing.

I need to figure out how to bring in extra income and want to start my own authority with another driver in the truck first and I will be following up by getting an additional truck after.

Probably not how truckers begin, but my circumstances will not allow me to leave my current job at the moment.

Not something I just woke up and decided to do; my father-in-law, brother-in-law, and a buddy of mine are truckers. We've talked for years and I wasn't in the position to make the move myself. It's looking more likely now and I'd like to begin by getting a truck and driver first.

I realize the cost isn't cheap and probably will not make much the first year. Just need plan and wanted to pick more brains from people in the Industry.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Old School's Comment
member avatar

Victor, welcome aboard!

I'm a long time business owner, and now a truck driver. I originally had a plan much like yours when I first decided to get into this. After months of consideration, planning, and working the numbers, I came to the conclusion that it just didn't make sense for me to risk the kind of capital required. The freight market has been really hot this year, but already showing signs of trouble ahead. The business end of this industry is hot and cold based on a lot of factors outside your control.

Doing this to generate a little extra income sounds bizarre to me. It's a business which will require you to be "all in." I found that being a competent dedicated company driver is a great way to make some good solid money. That is the only way I would ever recommend someone get started in this. Having relatives in the business really means nothing - having "skin in the game" will be as damaging as it will be challenging. I just can't give you any encouragement to follow through with this.

We focus on helping new drivers make a good start at this, and for as many years as I have been involved here, we've never tried to get anyone to jump right into the deep water like you're contemplating. It's a commodities business, and it's complexity leaves little room for error while providing very modest profit levels. The national averages of the largest trucking companies are usually in the 3 to 5 percent range, and that is with billions in revenue.

I know you'll probably persist in your quest, so I hope you'll get some help from people who specialize in this sort of advice. The best place to start would be the OOIDA Website.

OOIDA:

Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association

Who They Are

OOIDA is an international trade association representing the interests of independent owner-operators and professional drivers on all issues that affect truckers. The over 150,000 members of OOIDA are men and women in all 50 states and Canada who collectively own and/or operate more than 240,000 individual heavy-duty trucks and small truck fleets.

Their Mission

The mission of OOIDA is to serve owner-operators, small fleets and professional truckers; to work for a business climate where truckers are treated equally and fairly; to promote highway safety and responsibility among all highway users; and to promote a better business climate and efficiency for all truck operators.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Victor M.'s Comment
member avatar

BTW, I just want to make clear that I do not wish to offend anyone or minimize the amount of work and hardship doing trucking takes.

I asked this very question in another forum and wasn't met with the friendliest of responses.

I figure they thought I was joking or trying to troll them or something.......not sure.

All input will be greatly appreciated. Ask away if you have any questions.

Bobcat_Bob's Comment
member avatar

Just out of curiosity how much money do you plan on "investing" and how much will you have on hand for when it is needed?

Victor M.'s Comment
member avatar

Victor, welcome aboard!

I'm a long time business owner, and now a truck driver. I originally had a plan much like yours when I first decided to get into this. After months of consideration, planning, and working the numbers, I came to the conclusion that it just didn't make sense for me to risk the kind of capital required. The freight market has been really hot this year, but already showing signs of trouble ahead. The business end of this industry is hot and cold based on a lot of factors outside your control.

Doing this to generate a little extra income sounds bizarre to me. It's a business which will require you to be "all in." I found that being a competent dedicated company driver is a great way to make some good solid money. That is the only way I would ever recommend someone get started in this. Having relatives in the business really means nothing - having "skin in the game" will be as damaging as it will be challenging. I just can't give you any encouragement to follow through with this.

We focus on helping new drivers make a good start at this, and for as many years as I have been involved here, we've never tried to get anyone to jump right into the deep water like you're contemplating. It's a commodities business, and it's complexity leaves little room for error while providing very modest profit levels. The national averages of the largest trucking companies are usually in the 3 to 5 percent range, and that is with billions in revenue.

I know you'll probably persist in your quest, so I hope you'll get some help from people who specialize in this sort of advice. The best place to start would be the OOIDA Website.

I Just mentioned the knowing someone in the Industry to show that this wasn't something I woke up and thought of one day. I'm fully aware this is something will mine to maintain fully.

Thank you so much for your advice.

I have considered going head first into driving as well.

OOIDA:

Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association

Who They Are

OOIDA is an international trade association representing the interests of independent owner-operators and professional drivers on all issues that affect truckers. The over 150,000 members of OOIDA are men and women in all 50 states and Canada who collectively own and/or operate more than 240,000 individual heavy-duty trucks and small truck fleets.

Their Mission

The mission of OOIDA is to serve owner-operators, small fleets and professional truckers; to work for a business climate where truckers are treated equally and fairly; to promote highway safety and responsibility among all highway users; and to promote a better business climate and efficiency for all truck operators.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Victor M.'s Comment
member avatar

Just out of curiosity how much money do you plan on "investing" and how much will you have on hand for when it is needed?

8-10K invested

15k on hand.

Bobcat_Bob's Comment
member avatar

This topic comes up often, I'll keep it short and sweet.

Most trucking companies make 3% profit if all goes well, it will be all but impossible to hire a decent driver and have anything left for yourself.

I wanted to start my own company as well but after I did the research it wasn't worth the risk, as you can make as much or more with 0 risk as a company driver.

I would strongly suggest investing your money elsewhere.

Victor M.'s Comment
member avatar

This topic comes up often, I'll keep it short and sweet.

Most trucking companies make 3% profit if all goes well, it will be all but impossible to hire a decent driver and have anything left for yourself.

I wanted to start my own company as well but after I did the research it wasn't worth the risk, as you can make as much or more with 0 risk as a company driver.

I would strongly suggest investing your money elsewhere.

Ok.

That might just be the route I take.

I'd prefer to be home every weekend as I have a family, so I'm sure that will limit me.

What is the average yearly income of a driver that is home on the weekends?

To keep it simple, say he hauls dry only.

Old School's Comment
member avatar

Where are you located? If your location is good you could land a pretty lucrative line-haul type job pulling doubles. You can make 80,000 plus dollars a year and be home on weekends, maybe even home nightly.

Doubles:

Refers to pulling two trailers at the same time, otherwise known as "pups" or "pup trailers" because they're only about 28 feet long. However there are some states that allow doubles that are each 48 feet in length.

Bobcat_Bob's Comment
member avatar

I am home every day and off on weekends running linehaul , I made 75k in my first full year. Being a regional driver where you are home for your 34 hour reset at a minimum should be able to be in the low 50s and can go up from there.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

Linehaul:

Linehaul drivers will normally run loads from terminal to terminal for LTL (Less than Truckload) companies.

LTL (Less Than Truckload) carriers will have Linehaul drivers and P&D drivers. The P&D drivers will deliver loads locally from the terminal and pick up loads returning them to the terminal. Linehaul drivers will then run truckloads from terminal to terminal.
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