The 5 Best Lease-to-Purchase Trucking Companies (for Owner Operators) -, Inc

The 5 Best Lease-to-Purchase Trucking Companies (for Owner Operators)


The 5 Best Lease-to-Purchase Trucking Companies (for Owner Operators)


Owner operators first starting out may want to keep costs down by leasing, avoiding maintenance and commitment, but those with bad credit who want the option to eventually own may want to look into lease purchasing, or ‘lease-to-own’, instead. Notorious amongst drivers for being sketchy practice by smaller companies, hopeful owner operators have to be very careful with this route, especially if they are new to the industry - before starting, consider being a company driver first to gain experience, or simply go with the most reputable companies. You can do the latter by following the list below, which features some of the best lease-to-own companies for aspiring owner operators, the list factoring in company reputation, personal necessities like pet and spouse approval, and financial securities.

Before diving into our list, you should know that 77% of Lease-to-Own contracts are not successful. The reason for this is that drivers run into maintenance problems, and don’t prepare adequately. So how can you avoid this? Follow these quick 3 steps, and you’ll be sure to be in the 23% success rate:

  • Maintain the value of your truck - that means drive an average of 60 miles per hour, conserve your brakes and do regular oil changes
  • Learn Maintenance - if you run into any issues, do the labor yourself. This can make a huge difference in lease purchasing payments, lowering expenditures enough to where you are basically making a regular purchase payment
  • Build a Savings - in the event you run into a heavy maintenance issue, have a rainy day fund to pull from. You can start one by cutting obvious costs like fast food and by getting a non-credit fuel rewards card

Nova Lines
Nova Lines promises new owner operators with bad credit the ability to own their own truck through their popular ‘Pathway to Ownership’ program. This works by taking over lease payments of a company-owned vehicle, and paying a bit extra on top of that. Though this process can be costlier than leasing or purchasing, it offers aspiring owner operators the chance to make the move from company driver to owner in a fluid way. Here’s what you should know about Nova’s Pathway to Ownership Program:

  • Weekly Gross Revenue starting at $5,500
  • Walk-away leases
  • $1 buyout at the end of the lease term
  • Well-maintained vehicles
  • Pet-friendly
  • Co-riders over 12 are okay
  • No truck governing
  • Flatbed experience preferred
  • Contact: 1-844-695-6682

AFC Transport
AFC Transport mostly focuses on U.S. deliveries in the Midwest, Southeast and Northeast, making it a great option for owner operators living in that area. The company is more interested in relatively familiar drivers, rather than those who are just jumping into their career, so new owner operators may want to look elsewhere to Lease Purchase. For seasoned drivers, here’s what you should know:

  • Valid CDL-A required, with 2 years experience
  • Must be 23 years or older
  • 6 months flatbed or reefer experience required
  • No more than 2 moving violations in the past 3 years
  • Weekly payments are between $400 - $900
  • Vehicles never any older than 5 years
  • Truck governing at 70 mph guarantees light maintenance and optimal fuel mileage
  • Choose between Peterbilt, Volvo, Freightliner or Kenworth models
  • One pet allowed
  • Co-riders over 12 are okay
  • Contact: 331-333-8200

JB Hunt
A contract-free lease-to-own program puts JB Hunt at the top of this list, in addition to other helpful perks that include paid driver orientation, payment plans across the U.S., Canada and Mexico, as well as multiple third-party payment plans that tailor to both experienced and inexperienced drivers. Compensation plans are also offered, payments based off mileage and percentage. Though specifics aren’t clear due to so many plan options, here’s what you should generally know:

  • 0% down lease purchase
  • Discounts on fuel and insurance rates
  • Dental, Medical, and Vision Insurance offered
  • Safety bonuses
  • Pet-friendly
  • Co-riders over 12 are okay
  • Truck governing at 70 mph guarantees light maintenance and optimal fuel mileage
  • Maximum of 4 violations & accidents allowed
  • Service Discounts at select service centers
  • Relatively new trucks available
  • Contact: 1-866-384-713

Prime, Inc
Popular amongst refrigerated, flatbed and tanker drivers, Prime, Inc. is an industry favorite for its strong earning potential and relatively low risk walk-away options ideal for those who may grow unhappy with their agreement. They also offer plenty of incentives to complete your lease, ranging from safety bonuses to helpful fuel discounts. Overall, here’s what you should know:

  • 0% Down
  • Extensive OEM Warranties
  • Truck governing at 65 mph guarantees light maintenance and optimal fuel mileage
  • Trucks are no older than 3 years
  • High maintenance standards
  • Walk-away options
  • Three-passenger program allows driver, and two passengers - these two passengers can be another adult, a team driver, a pet below 40 pounds and one child. Child can only be below 12 if two adults are in the vehicle
  • Contact: 1-800-491-1240

Ace Doran
Popular amongst lease-purchase drivers for having one of the most affordable programs, Ace Doran is a historic hauling & rigging company that’s been around since 1913. Their plan forces a specific trailer size, model and weight capacity, so with the exchange of freedom of choice comes forgiving lease-to-purchase rates and the guarantee of their newest model, not to mention early buyout. This is probably the best option for owner operator hopefuls. Here’s what you should know:

  • Specific truck has to be a Reitnouer Big Bubba Flatbed; size 48’ x 102’
  • Guaranteed owned in 5 years
  • Guaranteed to be the newest model, from that year
  • Escrow is fully funded through weekly payments
  • Early buyout available after 2 years
  • Pet-friendly
  • License plates, physical damage insurance and GPS included in weekly payments
  • Contact: 270-316-1723

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