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Showing posts with label personal finance. Show all posts
Showing posts with label personal finance. Show all posts

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Buying a New (To You) Semi-Truck

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Buying a New (To You) Semi-Truck
Buying a New (To You) Semi-Truck
Buying a new vehicle is a hassle. Whether you’re buying a sedan for the family, or that hot rod you’ve always dreamt of, you’re gonna face some kind of trouble.

But what about when you want to buy a new semi-truck?

Choosing Your Truck


Your first determination will be, do you want a new truck or a used truck? In order to figure that out, you need to think about what you will be doing with your truck. Unfortunately, new trucks run between $80,000 and $150,000. With all the bells and whistles out there, you could sit right near $200,000.

Of course, getting a new truck usually means you’re getting a warranty, too. That will offset costly repairs, at least!

If you’re running local freight and one day jobs, getting your hands on a used semi-truck could be a better option.

Whichever option you pursue, you need to figure out your margins and set a budget. This should not only include what you can afford to buy, but it should also factor in what your fuel, maintenance, and insurance costs will be with said truck.


Related Blog: HVUT Credits: Selling & Purchasing Vehicles

How Do You Pay For It?


That’s the most important question, isn’t it? There are basically two payment routes you can take when it comes to purchasing your truck - financing and outright purchasing.

We’ll have to break this down into two categories: Why you should seek out financing, and why you shouldn’t.

If you own a trucking business, some of the costs of the vehicle and the depreciation can be deducted from your taxes - make sure you keep detailed records. However, on the plus side, many loans don’t require an initial payment, so there’s

However, there are some disadvantages to financing your truck. First, if your loan payments are high, you’re gonna feel it in your wallet. On top of that, you’re still responsible for your own truck maintenance, including parts! Plus, the truck isn’t technically yours until you’re done paying it off.

After all of that, some financiers will only supply financing if you already own multiple trucks, making this harder for single truck owner-operators!

If You Go Used, Get Inspected


While buying a used truck might be the most affordable option for you, you need to make sure you’re not throwing money into a lemon.

So when you buy a used vehicle, make sure you get the truck thoroughly inspected.

While they may swear the truck works great, and you may know your way under the hood of a truck, getting an independent mechanic to inspect the vehicle can save you in the long run.

It might cost you around $100 now, but if it saves you thousands in repairs down the road, where’s the loss?

When you get an inspection, the key points you want to have examined are axle configuration, truck horsepower and capacity, engine condition, brake systems, cab condition, and the maintenance logs.

If all clears, you found yourself a good investment!

Once you have your new truck on the road, you’re going to need to e-file Form 2290. Head to ExpressTruckTax and sign up for a free account - you won’t have to pay until you transmit your heavy vehicle use tax!


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Wednesday, May 11, 2016

5 Reasons Truckers Get Burned Out

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Let’s face it, few things are worse than getting burned out on the job.

We hear about it all the time in the trucking industry, too. Maybe it’s the driver shortage, or maybe it’s the stress of the job.

But why do people get burned out? What challenges do truckers face that lead to burnout?

Not Enough Money


Nothing can demotivate a driver more than stagnating wages. It’s important to offer competitive rates in the industry, because people will need to be attracted into the profession. Or else labor will dry up over time.

Yet, money isn’t the biggest reason people leave the profession. In fact, money issues rarely account for more than 20% of exits from the industry.

Not Happy with Dispatching


When workers become dissatisfied with their supervisors, they will look for new opportunities elsewhere. We know that tension tends to exist between drivers and dispatchers/managers.

That’s why some companies have started initiatives to better profile and match drivers to dispatchers. This is a step in the right direction, but dispatching can still frustrate drivers.

Whether it’s unpaid wait time, being stranded far from home without a load, or bad directions—truckers have plenty to deal with between hauls.

Understandable how they might feel unappreciated.

No Appreciation


When a driver feels like they matter, they will put more effort and care into their work.

While truckers are used to hearing about their errors, receiving feedback on what they did right could help alleviate the frustrations that come with the job. Plus positive reinforcement from customers can help drivers set their own goals and improve relations.

Whether it's more customer feedback or initiatives taken to show drivers appreciation, something needs to give. Maybe even more me-time can help out!

No Home Time


Come on, who doesn’t want more time at home? Of course, the problem isn’t always just how much time at home.

But some drivers dislike the infrequency of time home, or the unpredictability of time off. Sometimes it's just how long each stay is.

Regardless, there should be efforts to maximize the recharging time drivers face when they get to go home. Whether that means routes closer to home or new scheduling efforts, there has to be a way.

Not What They Expected


But after everything is all said and done, a driver might realize this is not what they expected.

And if a driver is told they can earn a certain amount during recruitment, they may start to resent the company if the outcome is different. That results in recruiters looking shady and drivers feeling paranoid.

Maybe the problem isn’t money as much as it is the details of the job — the stress, the diet, or the schedule. Open communication will alleviate a lot of these issues.

One thing drivers won’t have to worry about is e-filing their IRS HVUT 2290 forms, because ExpressTruckTax has your back. Feel free to send us any questions you have at Support@ExpressTruckTax.com or by phone at 704.234.6005.

How do you think we can avoid driver burnout?


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Wednesday, March 9, 2016

File Like an Expert: Tax Deductions for Truckers

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Would you head out on the road without any idea where you’re going? I didn’t think so. So why would you head into tax season without a plan?

Your truck isn’t just a vehicle, it’s also a place of business. It makes sense that you would qualify for multiple tax deductions for your truck use.

So let’s look at some money saving secrets you can implement on your tax return. Whether you’re a company driver or an owner-operator, there could be a deduction in your future. Basically, your deductions should be for items that help you complete your driving job.


So What Can I Deduct?

Well what are some items that can be deducted? Cleaning supplies, office supplies, and miscellaneous supplies all count. As long as the supplies help you run and maintain your business, you can claim them.

But it doesn’t stop there! Electronics equipment like your CB radio, power boosters, GPS units (including map updates) can be counted as deductions. Tractor supplies like bunk heaters, coolers, de-icers, and window screens are all fine for deductions, too.

Really, you can apply this to a lot of items that come into use. Bungee cords, load chains, locks, and wide load flags are all vital load securement tools that are required for your work. Tools like electrical tape, tire irons, and flashlights can count, too. Safety clothing like gloves, boots, and thermals can be a necessity for the job.

Your personal hygiene is a vital part of your job, so that can even factor into your deductions! Whether you’re going to a tax professional or working with a family member familiar with tax code, make sure you go over every possible deduction at hand.

I Have a Lot of Deductions… I Need More Time!

Instead of worrying about filing time, head over to ExpressExtension and e-file for an automatic tax extension. With personal extension Form 4868, you can extend your personal filing deadline to October 17th. If you’re a fleet owner, there are plenty of options for you at ExpressExtension. You can e-file business extension Form 7004 and extend your deadline up to 6 months. And if you need more time to file 1099s, W-2s, and ACA Form 1094/1095, e-file Form 8809 with ExpressExtension for a 30 day extension!

When it comes time to file your taxes, professional help is best. And when it comes time to file your HVUT 2290s, call our dedicated, bilingual customer service team at 704.234.6005. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to keep up with upcoming tax deadlines and the latest trucking news.

What are some other trucking expenses you could claim as tax deductions?


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E-file your HVUT Form 2290 with ExpressTruckTax.