Semi Truck Financing vs. Leasing: Which is Better? 

Getting started in the freight business or replacing your semi truck can be costly. Most people can’t afford to purchase a semi truck, as they can cost anywhere from $70,000 to $150,000 used or $100,000 to $200,000 new. 

When working with a dealer, you may find yourself with an offer to lease a truck that seems like an affordable option. However, leasing can be a slippery slope that could prevent you from making the income you need for a sustainable career in trucking. 

What is a Lease? 

When you lease a semi truck, you will not actually own it. A lease is an agreement that for a certain period of time, you will drive the truck and make weekly payments. It is more like a long term rental of a truck. Lease terms are typically somewhere around 3 or 4 years and during that time you are responsible for the cost of fuel and maintenance even though you don’t own the truck. 

What is Financing? 

Financing a semi truck means getting a truck loan to purchase it. You technically own the truck as long as you make payments, which are due monthly. Truck loan terms may be anywhere from 12 to 84 months. Once you have paid off the loan in full, you will own the truck. Financing requires a credit check in order to be approved. 

Financing vs. Leasing: Which is Better? 

Both financing and leasing a truck have their pros and cons: 

Pros of Leasing: 

  • No credit check required.
  • Lower payments. 
  • Leasing allows you to work for yourself and make your own money rather than driving for a company.
  • No down payment required. 

Cons of Leasing:

  • You don’t own the truck. 
  • Payments don’t contribute to ownership. 
  • Payments are due weekly. 

Pros of Financing: 

  • You technically own the truck even though you are still making payments. 
  • Payments are due monthly.
  • Loan payments are applied to the total balance so you’re making progress on paying off the loan with each payment. 

Cons of Financing: 

  • A credit check is required to qualify for a truck loan.
  • A down payment may be required for a truck loan. 
  • If you are unable to make payments your truck may be repossessed and your credit score may go down significantly. 

Deciding between these two options depends on your individual situation as well as your own priorities. If you have a low credit score or some negative history on your credit report, you may be concerned that you won’t qualify for a loan, but with the right lender you may find a workable financing option. With both options you are responsible for the cost of maintenance and fuel because you are working as an owner-operator, which means you are self employed. 

How the 10-4 Financing Process Works 

10-4 Financing specializes in semi truck loans for people with all credit scores and backgrounds. Even if you think you would never qualify for a truck loan, we offer options that could make it possible for you. Don’t settle for a lease that could be a drain on your income when you could finance a truck and know that every payment you make goes toward paying it off. 

Will the Loan Application Lower My Credit Score?

We can check your credit with a soft pull, meaning your credit score won’t be affected. You can be prequalified without your credit taking a hit, allowing you to compare rates and consider your options. 

How Can I Find a Quality Truck for an Affordable Price? 

In order to be successful as an owner-operator, you need a reliable truck with a price that will allow for affordable monthly payments. We have experts on our team that can help you find a quality truck that you can afford as you get started in the business. 

Start Your Career Today

If you’re ready to start a career in trucking or become your own boss, apply for semi truck financing today. Getting prequalified allows you to shop for trucks in your price range to find the best deal. Call 888-908-7701 for more information or apply today.