Renewing all of part of a vehicle fleet is a crucial moment in the life of every company.
When you explore the new technology in your field, you should be aware of two components; durability and resale value. A dry van trailer, for example, can be useful for about 15 years, but if a specification made it lightweight, the durability might have to be sacrificed, and the vehicle will not be useful for that long.
“Trailer specifications are evolving just as rapidly as tractor specifications. Fleets are exploring a wide variety of aerodynamic enhancements such as trailer blades and collapsible trailer tails, as well as low rolling resistant tires and wide based tires. Trailer weight is also a focal point. Fleets are looking to maximize their payloads; so they are demanding lighter weight trailers.” Says an expert in the field.
Resale value might also be impacted by specifications that are too unique, like a 14-ft. roof height, which is not legal in all the states, or an unusual trailer length. You should consider the trailer or vehicle specification carefully, keeping in mind the resale value, and identifying the secondary market that might need a vehicle with those specifications.
When deciding whether to purchase or lease, these are the things you should think about:
• Purchasing can raise the value of your business. But if your company is not cash rich and you are considering financing, know that the lease payments will be lower than purchase. By leasing, you can use the difference in payment for other projects
• Look into the types of leases on the market today. You earn different financial benefits for your business. In an operating lease, you can deduct 100% of your lease payments from your income. In capital lease you can deduct only the interest you pay on the lease, but you can deduct the depreciation of the asset as well.
• When it comes to a fleet of vehicles, you run the risk of tarnishing your image if the vehicles are poorly maintained and old. When leasing you always get the latest models, and your drivers benefit from the newest technologies like backup camera and updated navigation.
• Maintenance – when you own your own fleet, you are the solely responsible for the maintenance and look of the fleet. When leasing you can leave the maintenance headache to the lessor (for an additional amount that is compatible to what it will cost you to do it yourself.) When talking about a big fleet, it is sometimes cost effective to maintain your vehicles on site with a mobile maintenance agreement.
• You can also benefit from other services like roadside assistance, driver safety training, and insurance coverage.
• You won’t have to deal with all the paperwork associated with keeping track of the vehicles. The lessor will do some of it on his end.