Two of the focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. For those who get into it, the trucking industry can be very lucrative if run the correctly. A major component is managing your fleet so that it runs as efficiently as possible. The following contributed post is entitled, 5 Ways To Make A Fleet of Vehicles More Affordable.
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Owning and maintaining a fleet of vehicles can be very expensive. If you’re looking to trim costs for your company, here are five ways in which you can make owning a fleet more affordable.
Weigh up the costs of leasing vs buying
There are two ways to acquire a fleet of vehicles – lease them or buy them. Both options can have their financial perks which are worth considering.
Leasing involves paying a monthly fee to effectively rent out the vehicle. This saves on initial costs. Whilst maintenance is still your responsibility, leased vehicles tend to be brand new and so are generally more reliable, saving you money in repairs.
Buying vehicles could be more expensive initially, but it can be cheaper in the long run. That said, the most affordable vehicles to buy are likely to be used vehicles, which may require more frequent repairs.
In either case, always buy through an official vehicle dealer. By shopping around and negotiating you may be able to lower costs.
Shop around for fleet insurance deals
Insuring every vehicle in your fleet can also be a big cost. Fleet insurance can save you a lot of money compared to insuring each vehicle individually. Make sure to shop around thoroughly to find the best deal at comparison sites such as this one.
You should also consider some of the factors that affect fleet insurance such as the quality of your drivers, the quality of your vehicles and your claim history. Adding surveillance cameras to all your vehicles could also save you huge amounts (this provides insurers with footage of any accident that occurs and can make drivers take more care behind the wheel).
Track your vehicle’s running costs
It could also be a good idea to track the running costs of each vehicle. When it comes to fuel, consider getting your drivers to log their fuel or to use a card as found at this website. This could help to ensure that drivers aren’t spending too much on fuel.
As for vehicle maintenance, keep a record of this too so that you know how much you’re spending in repairs on each vehicle. Try to shop around to beat repair quotes (just make sure to read reviews of repair centres so that you know you’re likely to get good quality service).
Tracking these expenses could be useful simply for tax purposes as they’re likely to be tax deductible. Make sure that you’re deducting all the expenses that you’re entitled to.
Prioritise energy efficiency
Encouraging energy-efficiency is important for saving you money on fuel. This should start by choosing the right type of vehicle – ideally you want something with a high MPG. Modern vehicles tend to be greener than older ones, so factor this in when choosing a vehicle.
Taking steps to encourage energy-efficient driving can also make an impact too. This could include rewarding drivers that drive more smoothly and conserve more fuel. This guide offers just a few incentives that could help you to encourage drivers to watch their fuel consumption. You may also be able to recommend routes to save time and fuel. Be careful however of laying down too many rules regarding how to drive and this may negatively affect the morale of your drivers.
Know when to replace vehicles to save costs
It’s important to know when to replace vehicles too so that you can save costs. Many companies overextend the life cycle of their vehicles to the point that parts start deteriorating. This results in more frequent repairs and more costs.
By keeping a record of repair expenses for each vehicle you can tell when a vehicle is starting to cost too much in maintenance – at this stage it’s best to cut your losses and buy a new vehicle.