The UK transport industry continues to recover and create opportunities for starting your small trucking company. If you start out as a sole trader, you can start off small with 1 or 2 local delivery contracts. True, you will be competing against the bigger outfits, but you have the advantage of lower overheads. Assuming you are moving from an employed truck driver to start a new truck cargo venture, we have listed 4 ways to keep a lid on costs.
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Choose low finance or zero finance option
Trucks are expensive and few can afford to buy these outright, so it is important to look to finance that has a low interest rate. One or two percent can make a huge difference if the final repayment costs.
Buying a Second hand Truck
Why buy a spanking new truck when you could buy a decent second had truck and significantly reduce tour initial outlay. Be sure to get any perspective purchase checked out with a qualified mechanic and if possible get an extended guarantee. Also do some research on truck reliability and choose one that will stand the test of time. Some trucks are available that are still within their warrant period, whilst more expensive may be a safer option. If you do go this route, do factor higher future maintenance costs.
Consider the HGV insurance category
Truck or HGV insurance is a recurring cost that needs to be considered in advance. The cost of insurance will depend on a number of factors. Apart from your driving history, the actual insurance category and cost of the truck will be a big factor. With this in mind, look for a truck in the lower insurance brackets. The size will also have a big say in the final premium, as such, don’t buy a size that is bigger than your actual trucking needs.
Get truck insurance quotes from multiple insurance companies in one place, making comparison easy. Some providers will let you pay commercial HGV insurance on a monthly basis.
Reduce Insurance Costs
If you have already purchased your logistics vehicle, it is possible to lower your insurance premiums if you can steps that reduce the risk of your truck being stolen or involved in an accident that you are held liable for. We have listed some of these steps below.
- Excess : If able and in consultation with your broker, increase the excess amount in return for a lower insurance quote:
- Security When parked: Can you provide secure parking when vehicle is not ins use. Does the secure parking have security cameras. Taking these steps should reduce your overall policy costs.
- Onboard Security : Add tracking devices and immobilisers that are industry approved will also lower risk of theft and increase chance of quick recovery should your truck be the victim of theft. The extra security will also help lower your insurance costs
Repairs and maintenance
This is tied into the truck manufacturers, some truck makes are just more reliable and cheaper to maintain than others. With any vehicle, preventative maintenance is key to reducing overall maintenance overheads. Find yourself a local qualified diesel mechanic that specialises in trucks and agree a maintenance schedule and stick to it. Take account of these scheduled maintenance costs and add in the costs for repairing and replacing parts. For example, tyres will need to be replaced on a regular basis and that cost should be factored in upfront.
Getting into the UK Trucking sector is an attractive option for many. One big attraction is the number of UK trucking jobs. In addition to get started, all you need is one lorry and one or two good contracts, letting you build up your business slowly. Major start-up costs have been covered above and will include the initial truck purchase and truck insurance. Some brokers may offer truck insurance on a pay as you go basis.