Start a Trucking Business With Just One Truck

If you’re following the right steps and learning from the right resources, you can start a trucking company with just one truck!


There’s a whole bunch of statistics out there that show how lucrative the trucking industry is and starting a trucking company today could be your key to financial freedom. The trucking industry will be a necessary pillar for years to come. With that being said, most of the trucking companies today are actually very small fleets, you don’t need hundreds of thousands of dollars in investments or large corporations relying on your services in order to make it in the trucking industry.


1. Paperwork, Paperwork, Paperwork

Yup, this is definitely the most boring part, but you can’t do anything else unless you get all the paperwork! CDL, provincial-based certificates, and other licenses are important things here. Every province has different standards, so things are a little different than starting a trucking business in the U.S. where they are primarily unified by the DOT. Make sure to do your research and find out exactly what paperwork and certificates you need based on your province. There are also certain permits and licenses you need for hauling to the U.S. as well. USDOT Number, MC Number… so once again, do your research and get it done!


2. Process Agents

‘A process agent is a representative upon whom court papers may be served in any proceeding brought against a motor carrier, broker, or freight forwarder.’


Shipping to the U.S. is important for a beginner trucking company, and you’re going to really want to cover your bases when it comes to shipping between states and having someone, or a team, that knows the requirements, and how to complete required forms to ensure you’re trucking legally.


3. INSURANCE

Window shop for insurance, get as many quotes as you can, and really find out where you can get your best value. Accidents and damages happen more often than you think in the trucking industry, and you want to make sure (especially as a startup company) that if anything happens, you can continue on trucking. An accident early on in your business can entirely hinder the growth and maybe even ruin your chances of becoming a successful company so insurance is one of the MOST important aspects of trucking. You need to make sure your trucks can stay on the road, and keep hauling.


4. Get a Truck!

Lease to own options are great. Let’s just get that out of the way now. The cost of things, as you know is extremely important in these beginner stages. While buying a truck obviously has its clear advantages, we’re assuming you don’t have the money to outright buy a truck at the moment. Average truck repairs can be between $10,000- $20,000 so if you’re buying a used truck upfront you have to keep in mind that these costs are inevitable. It’s so so so important to make sure that you are 100% positive about the purchase of your first truck. Test drive it, check the details, what’s the mileage, is it a sleeper cab or a day cab ( we’ve said it in the past but we’ll say it again. A sleeper cab is a way better first investment).

5. What About The Trailer?

Well, if you’re trucking, you’re going to need a trailer of course. What kind of trailer are you going to need? Well, that depends on the job. There are Flat Deck trailers which are great when you have an oversized load, Reefer trailers which are temperature controlled, preserving perishables and other temperature-sensitive goods; then we have Dry Vans and Pup Trailers which are your standard enclosed trucking trailers, varying in size. These are all options that we offer here at Smartway. You should really consider renting, or an operating lease. Having your monthly costs fixed is great for budgetary purposes and is a cost-effective alternative to outright buying and owning a trailer that in the future might not be as much value to your company and the types of jobs you’re working on. As a growing company, your needs will vary greatly as your company expands. Since you’re not putting equity into the equipment, you can typically write off this monthly payment as an operating expense. If you’re interested in taking this route with your business, consider Smartway’s options. We have a full lineup of trailers ready to help you complete any and every job.

Now clearly we’ve simplified a few things, we can’t have you sitting here all day reading, you’ve got a trucking business to start! But we just wanted to create you a little map so that you can see roughly what the steps are to moving forward with starting a trucking company and how much of your time you’re really going to need to reserve for this. It’s not easy, but we promise you it is so worth it once things are up and running. The trucking industry is so rewarding and the journey to trucking excellence is more than half of the fun.


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Start a Trucking Business With Just One Truck

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If you’re following the right steps and learning from the right resources, you can start a trucking company with just one truck!


There’s a whole bunch of statistics out there that show how lucrative the trucking industry is and starting a trucking company today could be your key to financial freedom. The trucking industry will be a necessary pillar for years to come. With that being said, most of the trucking companies today are actually very small fleets, you don’t need hundreds of thousands of dollars in investments or large corporations relying on your services in order to make it in the trucking industry.


1. Paperwork, Paperwork, Paperwork

Yup, this is definitely the most boring part, but you can’t do anything else unless you get all the paperwork! CDL, provincial-based certificates, and other licenses are important things here. Every province has different standards, so things are a little different than starting a trucking business in the U.S. where they are primarily unified by the DOT. Make sure to do your research and find out exactly what paperwork and certificates you need based on your province. There are also certain permits and licenses you need for hauling to the U.S. as well. USDOT Number, MC Number… so once again, do your research and get it done!


2. Process Agents

‘A process agent is a representative upon whom court papers may be served in any proceeding brought against a motor carrier, broker, or freight forwarder.’


Shipping to the U.S. is important for a beginner trucking company, and you’re going to really want to cover your bases when it comes to shipping between states and having someone, or a team, that knows the requirements, and how to complete required forms to ensure you’re trucking legally.


3. INSURANCE

Window shop for insurance, get as many quotes as you can, and really find out where you can get your best value. Accidents and damages happen more often than you think in the trucking industry, and you want to make sure (especially as a startup company) that if anything happens, you can continue on trucking. An accident early on in your business can entirely hinder the growth and maybe even ruin your chances of becoming a successful company so insurance is one of the MOST important aspects of trucking. You need to make sure your trucks can stay on the road, and keep hauling.


4. Get a Truck!

Lease to own options are great. Let’s just get that out of the way now. The cost of things, as you know is extremely important in these beginner stages. While buying a truck obviously has its clear advantages, we’re assuming you don’t have the money to outright buy a truck at the moment. Average truck repairs can be between $10,000- $20,000 so if you’re buying a used truck upfront you have to keep in mind that these costs are inevitable. It’s so so so important to make sure that you are 100% positive about the purchase of your first truck. Test drive it, check the details, what’s the mileage, is it a sleeper cab or a day cab ( we’ve said it in the past but we’ll say it again. A sleeper cab is a way better first investment).

5. What About The Trailer?

Well, if you’re trucking, you’re going to need a trailer of course. What kind of trailer are you going to need? Well, that depends on the job. There are Flat Deck trailers which are great when you have an oversized load, Reefer trailers which are temperature controlled, preserving perishables and other temperature-sensitive goods; then we have Dry Vans and Pup Trailers which are your standard enclosed trucking trailers, varying in size. These are all options that we offer here at Smartway. You should really consider renting, or an operating lease. Having your monthly costs fixed is great for budgetary purposes and is a cost-effective alternative to outright buying and owning a trailer that in the future might not be as much value to your company and the types of jobs you’re working on. As a growing company, your needs will vary greatly as your company expands. Since you’re not putting equity into the equipment, you can typically write off this monthly payment as an operating expense. If you’re interested in taking this route with your business, consider Smartway’s options. We have a full lineup of trailers ready to help you complete any and every job.

Now clearly we’ve simplified a few things, we can’t have you sitting here all day reading, you’ve got a trucking business to start! But we just wanted to create you a little map so that you can see roughly what the steps are to moving forward with starting a trucking company and how much of your time you’re really going to need to reserve for this. It’s not easy, but we promise you it is so worth it once things are up and running. The trucking industry is so rewarding and the journey to trucking excellence is more than half of the fun.


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Chris Smart

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chris.smart@smartway.ca
905-775-6700 ext 101

Mike Smart

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mike.smart@smartway.ca
905-775-6700 ext 102

Danielle Smart

CFO
danielle.smart@smartway.ca
905-775-6700 ext 116

Mario Clewlow

General Manager
mario.clewlow@smartway.ca
905-775-6700 ext 116
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