Episode 41 – Independent Owner Operator vs Lease Driver

Which Is Better – Buying Your Own Truck And Having Your Own Authority Or Being A Lease Driver?

You have to ultimately decide for yourself – but in general becoming an independent owner operator is the best route to go in most cases – if you have what it takes to do it. Many don’t.

To be successful as an independent owner operator you need to be a business person in addition to being a good truck driver. Otherwise you can be the greatest trucker who ever lived and you will still fail. Too many make the mistake of assuming that since they are good truck drivers they are going to be good owner operators too.

Often that is simply not the case.

On the other hand being a lease driver requires little to no knowledge of the business of trucking. The company that is leased on to will handle most of it for you  and point you in the direction of the rest – probably specifically on what you need to do. The down side is that they also control your freight and that means they control your fate – even more so if you are buying a truck through them. In that case you are captive.

Now if you own your own truck and don’t have it financed through them under any program – then at least you can cancel your lease and leave if you want to. Thats at least a little better.

The reality is that many company drivers earn more and have fewer headaches than many lease drivers do.

If you are brand new to trucking I highly recommend you get some experience as a driver and learn the business before you bite off on a lease purchase program of any type – and be aware there are still companies out there pushing these programs hard. Do what ever you choose to do – but make sure you know what you are getting yourself involved in first and what the risks are vs the rewards.

If you take the time to do some research and learn about the business of trucking and get some experience as a company driver before you go buy a truck then you will do far better than those who don’t.