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Cornell Student Articles on Topical Affairs

A Commercial Vehicle is a Financial Investment: Factors to Consider Before Breaking the Bank

Commercial vehicles are worth the investment when expanding a business, moving items, or even when it comes to opening a business chain. Depending on the niche of a business and their needs, there are countless commercial vehicles to choose from –prime movers, rigid trucks, trailers, and 4WD.

But while a catering service might require heating and refrigerating units, the same internal and external aesthetics would not be suitable for a clothing company looking to transport bulks of their summer shipment.  Looking into specific factors including floor space, the type of vehicles, costs, and running costs are only several things to consider when making a decision before breaking the bank with the purchase.

It all comes down to what is best suited for the company. Here are some things to consider before investing in commercial vehicles:

If the company is looking into renting a dry van, examining the floor and measuring the overall measurements of the vehicle is probably the most important task at hand. The worse case scenario would be renting a vehicle and not being able to accommodate the business’ necessities; it will lead to another procedure altogether, wasting the time of both parties and unnecessary money.

In addition to measurements, examining the vehicle’s floor and making sure the items will not break from added pressure is just as important. Unlike refrigerated vans, dry vans are used to carry non-perishable foods, clothing items, and building products and are not temperature sensitive. By having unstable flooring, the result could lead to bulks of damaged goods.

There are different types of commercial vehicles that fit perfectly for almost every business niche. Renting a refrigerated van would be more suitable for transporting perishable objects, consumable food, and temperature sensitive pharmaceutical items. On the other hand, renting a prime mover vehicle is best suited for heavyduty machinery, military vehicles, and tractors.

Part of helping a business thrive is to choose a vehicle that fits perfectly with all its needs including the minor and major features. In some cases a 4WD would be more suitable to rent than a truck, if the overall purpose of that specific task is visiting a construction site.

Although this may be an obvious point, some things may be overlooked when it comes to the rental process. Commercial vehicles are not the cheapest, but they are still an investment that may be worth the dollars if it will help the business thrive. Some tips to outweigh the costs would be looking at complimentary upfit incentives including bundled upgraded packages, deals, and looking into upfitting options. Sometimes acquiring upfitting options can be an easy task.

Leasing options is another thing to consider. Financing a vehicle is a big monetary investment so looking into a company that offers leasing options will help with the financial burden. Having leasing options can also help businesses stay up to date with vehicle upgrades and emerging trends that can help the business run more efficiently.

Sometimes the most important part is not the vehicles and products itself, but the customer service behind the rental company and how far they are willing to go. Renting a commercial vehicle is more of an investment rather than an expense, and it’s best to look ahead at possible complications that may occur and how the company can help fix them.  

The customer service provided by the rental company is just as vital as the decision-making process. Some things to consider and ask the company will be if they cater to any business size, if they able to offer tailored solutions, and their knowledge in the industry. The synergy between the business and the rental company should be of a match as well.

This goes beyond gas and mileage; when investing in the rental or purchase of a commercial vehicle its best to look at things on a larger scale – longevity, traction of the tires, brake wear, and the overall maintenance of the vehicle. Will there be additional repairs that are needed or will the company be able to offer solutions depending on the needs. Looking deeper into running costs can help businesses budget their vehicle and other expenses that may arise.

Over the years, a business and company can expand towards different directions and renting a commercial vehicle can help make the transition smoother. If a clothing company is opening a pop-up shop in a different city, it would make reasonable sense to rent a dry van, rather than renting several compact cars to move the items. Although these are some factors to consider before making the big leap, the most important thing would be connecting with a rental company and asking the right questions.


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