Looking to run your own truck? There are a few pros & cons you need to consider first…
If you’ve been in the trucking industry for a while, you’ve probably talked to quite a few truckers who own and operate their rigs.
Maybe they’ve told you how being an owner/operator offers better pay rates and more freedom to set your own schedule.
And while those are a couple pros of running your own rig, it’s important to be aware of the cons as well.
Local Owner Operator who owns your truck is a massive investment, and a decision you shouldn’t take lightly.
So, if you’re wondering if owning/operating is worth it, keep reading! We’ll explain the pros and cons of driving for a company vs. becoming an owner/operator of your rig.
Owner/Operators vs. Company Drivers
The difference is fairly simple—as the title suggests, owners/operators run their own rigs. They’re responsible for the maintenance, fuel, and of course, the risk of owning their own truck.
Naturally, that means the truck belongs to you, so you have the freedom to perform upgrades to your rig whenever you want.
Company drivers, on the other hand, don’t typically have those options. Still, driving with a company has its perks. For example, company drivers won’t have to worry about shelling out if their truck breaks down.
With those differences in mind, let’s dive into the pros and cons of both options…
- You may get paid more: A perk of owning your rig is you’ll typically get paid more—because you’re taking on the responsibility of risk for your vehicle.
- You set your schedule: Like we said earlier—you’ve got control over your schedule. You’ll still have to drive to pay the bills, though, so you can’t get too flexible with your hours.
- Upgrades and customizations: Another perk is the ability to upgrade your truck to your liking. Want a bigger sleeper cab or custom seats? The options are endless, if you’ve got the cash to spare.
- An expensive initial investment: Owning/operating is generally reserved for more experienced drivers, and for good reason. A decent used truck can cost anywhere from $50,000 – $100,000, and a new truck will run you $125,000 – $175,000, not including. so owner-operators looking for drivers always
- Fuel and Fees: One of the biggest downsides of owning your truck is the cost of diesel. You can expect to pay $50,000 – $ 70,000 each year on fuel, and another $300 – $500 on insurance each month. Plus, you’ll need to spend a few hundred dollars getting your IRP, DOT number, and more.
- Schedule Flexibility: Depending on how you work, this may not always be a good thing. You’ll have to find your own loads, and motivate yourself to work even when you don’t want to.
- Quarterly Taxes: Because you won’t be working for a company that withholds your taxes, you’ll likely pay 20 – 30% in taxes each quarter.
- Maintenance: You won’t have a company to pay for your maintenance costs either. So, you’ll have to know what you’re looking for (or know someone who does) before you buy a truck. If your rig breaks down, costly repairs can set you back largely on your profit margins.
Company Driving Pros
- Just get your CDL: Besides the initial cost of getting your CDL, you won’t have to shell out for any costs upfront. Getting paid is as easy as finding a job and drivers having CDL can get the best paying driving Jobs CDL.
- Your company pays for fuel: In most cases, your company will pay for fuel and fees. This is a good thing for your wallet, especially if you choose to drive long distances over the road.
- Insurance & Benefits: Because you’re working for a company, it’ll be a whole lot easier to receive benefits, and you typically won’t have to pay for insurance. Plus, you should receive paid time off and paid holidays off—if you work for the right company.
- Less of a Commitment: It’s much easier to change your career if you don’t have hundreds of thousands of dollars sunk into a rig.
- Maintenance is covered: Big rigs are built to last, but they’re not indestructible. If you drive for a company, you won’t be on the hook for any maintenance costs. The same can’t be said for owner/operators.
Company Driving Cons
- Potentially less pay: Depending on the company you work for, you might get paid less than an owner/operator. Then again, working for a company is consistent. Owning/operating means one mechanical problem could leave you out of work for months.
- Less Flexibility: Working for a company means you won’t have the ability to set your schedule (in most cases).
- You don’t choose your truck: Naturally, you’ll drive whatever truck the company gives you (unless you drive with JFW Trucking).
One Last Thing…
What’s the biggest con for you as a trucker? Too many hours over-the-road, a company that doesn’t value you, or a schedule that’s too busy?
If you answered yes to any of those questions, consider driving with JFW Trucking.
JFW Trucking drives only local routes and helps those who searching for Local Owner Operator Jobs with competitive pay and benefits to compensate you fairly for your work.
And unlike most companies, your truck is yours for as long as you want it! That means you can customize your truck (tint your windows, add chrome, etc.) as you see fit.
Plus, we’ll upgrade your truck every 4 – 5 years—that’s not a perk you’ll enjoy as an owner/operator.
We’ve been in the trucking industry for over 80 years, so we know what to look for in a trucker—we hire safe, professional drivers. That’s why we offer:
- Paid Time Off
- Health benefits (healthcare, dental, vision, and savings plans)
- Retirement plans
- Paid holidays (New Year’s Day, Easter, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day)
- Quarterly bonuses for driving safely
- Modern equipment and a skilled mechanic team
We’re a family-owned company, and we want to help you support yours. We provide excellent pay, benefits, and equipment (only 2019 or newer) because we want to hire the best in the business.
If that’s you, give us a call or visit our website to apply now! We look forward to hearing from you.