Owner-operator Bill Carlson knows a good deal when he sees it... especially the second time around. And the 16-year OTR veteran says he received the best deal going when he became an independent contractor for Roehl Transport and then bought a new tractor through the company’s recently expanded lease/purchase program.
Carlson is in a prime position to compare Roehl’s independent-contractor (IC) program. He has been a company driver with another carrier and an owner-operator working through brokers in the past. Then, he contracted with Roehl from 2002 to 2006 but left to haul for a company that promised more local runs. Two months later, he rejoined Roehl. “I was losing my shirt with the other outfit,” he explained.
“When I decided to reconnect with a national carrier, I had several options in the Kissimmee, FL, area but there was no doubt about who I wanted to partner with... Roehl Transport,” Carlson said. Last month, the decision to resume hauling for Roehl became even better when the company expanded its tractor lease/purchase program to include new equipment.
Carlson saved over $30,000 by leasing a new royal blue Freightliner Columbia with a 515 hp Detroit; 13 speeds; power windows and locks; CD; and chrome stacks, tanks, mirrors and wheels. Carlson said the monthly payment for the Roehl lease is approximately the same as the deal he had worked out for buying a year-old truck from a dealer, but by leasing a new truck from Roehl he has a full warranty and will save $32,000 over the next four years in taxes. He can then buy the truck and depreciate it for further savings. Plus, he’ll have the cash from selling his old truck outright rather than trading it in. “Holding onto your cash is smart advice in any business and Roehl’s lease program lets me keep more of it,” Carlson noted.
Roehl’s independent contractor compensation is very attractive. “I make a darn good living,” Carlson said. “But the real truth is drivers don’t change companies for one or two cents a mile anyway. It’s about how they are treated.” Carlson said Roehl is committed to driver success. “The pay is always right on the money. I get the home time with my wife and children that is so important to me. And when I asked what would happen if I had a $5,000 breakdown some place and had only $3,500 in my maintenance account, Dan Bennett (Roehl’s Owner Operator Program Manager) answered, ‘We will never leave you stranded.’” Six months later, Carlson put that promise to the test and Roehl was “good to their word,” he said.
“Roehl has one of the best safety records in the nation and their expectation is that you run legal. That’s important with today’s insurance and liability environment, but it’s also smart business,” he said. Roehl’s top SafeStat record also means drivers get the PrePass® green light to bypass roadside inspections more often. That makes Roehl drivers more fuel efficient and productive, which adds to their bottom lines.
Carlson said the Roehl program is especially good for drivers wanting to break into the owner-operator side of the trucking industry. “It handles the road tax, takes care of the bookkeeping – the stuff that can bog down an owner-operator. It’s the only program I know of that can take a person from being a clerk in Wal-Mart to a profitable small business owner in one year,” he said.
Roehl is known as The Take Home More, Be Home More CarrierTM. Owner-operators and company drivers wishing to become independent contractors can call 800-GO-ROEHL or visit GoRoehl.com for national and regional; van, flatbed and refrigerated opportunities.
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