A very important factor to consider when you become an owner operator is how you are going to get paid. This is one of the main differences between being an independent owner operator truck driver and a driver on a lease purchase program.
Every company has their own policies regarding payment rates and percentages but the following is a very common scenario based on experienced owner operators. Let’s examine the two most popular owner operator pay structures.
Some lease purchase trucking companies pay you by the mile. Most of these companies have company trucks and leased trucks, very seldom they are set to operate solely as an owner operator trucking company. The bread and butter of lease purchase trucking companies are their own trucks, so they when they lease independent owner operators it’s really just as a bonus. Because of the way they are structured they tend to treat leased owner operators as company drivers and on top of that they limit them to a fixed rate per mile. For example, they pay something between 88 to 94 cents a mile plus fuel surcharge. What happens in a situation like that is you run like crazy trying to make money and pay for that truck. The flipside of that is they do pay for a few things, but then again making 94 cents a mile it means you couldn’t afford to pay for a lot of stuff yourself anyway.
Drivers on a lease purchase truck program have experienced that they are being dispatched just like any other company driver, with no option to make their own decisions or turn down a load. If they don’t want to take a load for whatever reason, they tell them to wait until they can find them another dispatcher and many times this could mean having to sit for over a week waiting to be dispatched.
If you like being a company driver but you want to lease the truck and make a few extra pennies, then the first option may be okay for you. But if you truly want to have a future in owner operator trucking then look for a company that treats you like an owner operator where you are not just another one of their company drivers.
The other option is percentage pay to me that works out the best because not every load pays the same. If you are on mileage pay you’re making the same no matter what. So if your load pays two or three dollars a mile you’re still making your 88 or 94 cents per mile. Wouldn’t you rather have the opportunity to get a pay raise whenever there are higher paying rates? The way to find the best owner operator companies is to look for a company that pays by percentage, they don’t have company trucks and is actually set up to offer owner operator trucking jobs. That is the kind of trucking company you really want to work for.
The best owner operator companies like Status Transportation have different percentage pay options based on the area of operation. Owner Operators can stay closer to home and drive regional or they can make more money by hauling to all 48 states as an OTR owner operator. Owner operators who own a trailer tend to earn a higher percentage, it all depends on the company they lease on to. It’s night and day difference when compared to lease purchase programs.
For more information on percentage based leasing options visit the Status Transportation website today. Don’t forget to subscribe to our blog.