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Could Corporate Vehicle Services Make a Difference for Your Business?

As your business grows, you may consider creating a business fleet, a group of vehicles devoted to business use. Creating a fleet for your company provides your employees with an alternative to using their vehicles for business travel. In this article, we’ll consider purchasing and leasing vehicles from a dealership or through an automaker and using corporate vehicle services. Every business differs in which choice best suits its needs, and yours may find that a mix of owned and leased vehicles makes the most sense for you.

Many businesses find that owning a few sedans or vans in their everyday fleet provides reliable vehicles for business meetings and corporate travel. Some specialty businesses, such as sewer companies and garage door repair firms, find leasing from corporate vehicle services useful. Let’s first consider your fleet options, then look at how leasing can provide unique vehicles that normally cost a lot to buy.

Buy or Lease to Build Your Fleet

New businesses may find leasing easier since leasing vehicles typically require a smaller upfront cost. Buying a vehicle requires a down payment, while leasing requires a deposit. Both options incur monthly payments, but the dealership may work with a business to make lease payments smaller.

Purchasing vehicles places the full maintenance burden on your company, although some automakers include one or more years of manufacturer-recommended maintenance visits in the purchase price. When leasing a vehicle, your business can purchase a manufacturer-recommended service package if the automaker doesn’t include one. Using these service plans leaves only handling breakdowns to your company.

Both leasing and buying provide tax incentives. Each offers its deductions. If you purchase vehicles for your fleet, you’ll need to choose a depreciation method and stick with it. Report this depreciation annually on your business tax return.

When you buy vehicles, you can modify them in whatever manner you want. Leasing vehicles limits the changes you can make. By using vinyl vehicle wraps or magnetized signage, you can use either leased or purchased fleet vehicles as advertisements for your company. Neither of those methods physically alters the vehicle because you can remove both methods without damaging the vehicle’s paint job.

Some companies need to modify vehicles physically, such as plumbing or electrical services that need to customize the interior of their work vans. Construction firms and master carpenters also typically require van modifications, as do taxi services, touring companies, and other services requiring passenger vans or buses.

Dealership, Automaker, or Corporate Vehicle Services

Should you buy or lease from a dealership, automaker, or corporate vehicle services? It depends on your needs. If you only need one type of vehicle, such as a sedan, and want to own them long-term, purchasing directly through your favorite automaker provides the ideal option. For leasing vehicles, your local dealership probably offers the best prices and will work with you on payment plans. If you need a variety of vehicle types or need to hire both a car and a driver, go with corporate vehicle services.

Some dealerships only handle personal leases or offer a limited number of vehicle types for lease. Although each new dealership typically receives each vehicle model a particular maker manufactures to sell, they may not offer business leasing for each vehicle. Conversely, using vehicle services, also called a car service, provides leased vehicles or an executive car service that ensures you impress clients when a chauffeur-driven sedan or limousine picks them up. By using a car service on retainer, you ensure continuity of vehicles and drivers.

Using a Corporate Vehicle Service for Unique Vehicles

Some vehicle service providers rent heavy equipment, specialty vehicles, farm equipment, and construction equipment. In most cases, you must provide your own driver or vehicle operator for these rentals, but the companies deliver directly to your job site. Renting a vehicle can let you continue a job when your tractor, backhoe, tiller, rock hauler, etc. breaks down. Let’s look at the most common uncommon vehicle rental services.

Sewer Companies

A sewer service can use corporate vehicle services to rent service vehicles, such as vans, septic pumping trucks, etc. These rental vehicles come already equipped for work, so you don’t have to worry about moving your equipment from a yet-unrepaired vehicle to a rented one. Renting a vehicle can also speed up your time to opening your business if the vehicles your company purchased experienced arrival delays.

Renting such vans or SUVs from a corporate service provider can mean readiness for every aspect of work, including CCTV sewer inspection. Rentals such as these don’t come cheap. Some of these heavy equipment vehicles require rental fees of between $20,000 and $55,000 per month. Having the vehicle quickly on-hand can mean you keep the contracts you already landed, though.

Farm and Other Agricultural Rentals

Farm equipment undergoes daily use, and breakdowns can occur with relative frequency. Many agricultural vehicle supply companies lease heavy equipment, offering short-term and long-term leases. This lease variety means you can obtain the exact equipment you need, whether your farm needs a tiller for a month while yours undergoes repairs or you need five tractors for three years.

Golf Cart Companies

Save money and make transportation more fun on your company’s campus by using golf carts for businesses. Many university campuses use these economical carts to transport people and small packages across campus. Your business can do the same thing, reducing the expensive operation of automobiles for short-distance travel. Round out your corporate campus transportation using Cushman carts, which provide small truck beds for hauling and an open-air cabin that seats two individuals.

Golf carts cost about $1,000 to $4,000, so your company can create a fleet of these economy carts for little upfront investment. Ownership requires maintenance, which means hiring a mechanic. To lease golf carts, use corporate vehicle services, so the rental company handles the upkeep.

Machinery Companies

Agricultural isn’t the only industry that can benefit from heavy equipment corporate vehicle services. Machinery companies can lease professional crankshaft machining devices and fulfill other large-scale equipment needs through renting and leasing. It’s easier to find such rental firms in large cities, but many of these service providers lease within a region, and they deliver the equipment.

If you need industrial mixers, offers them for rent. Bobcat Rentals offers skid steers, excavators, and loaders. Turn to companies, such as Glacier Energy to rent in-situ machining equipment.

Garage Door Companies

When you think of corporate vehicle services, you might not immediately think of a provider of vans for commercial garage door services but large metropolitan areas provide just such rentals. In major cities, companies like U-Haul and Enterprise rent cargo vans. In some cases, the rental service will pick you up at your home or workplace, and in others, they deliver the vehicle to you.

Your garage door repair company doesn’t have to go without a vehicle when one breaks down. If purchasing a cargo van has delayed the launch of your business, rent a cargo van or lease your fleet so you can start your garage door repair business. Unlike heavy equipment rentals, the monthly lease payments on cargo vans compare to sedan or SUV rentals, making it a viable option for most businesses. There are even more benefits to commercial garage door services to discover!

Fuel Companies

Do you own a fuel company that offers emergency oil delivery? Did your delivery van or truck die? Use corporate vehicle services to rectify the problem immediately so you can keep your heating customers happy.

Perhaps your business delivers natural gas or propane, so you need to rent a semi-tractor trailer outfitted with a gas trailer. Companies like Ryder, Premier Trailer Leasing, and Penske Truck Rental offer short- and long-term semi-trailer rentals. A short-term lease can let you fulfill a temporary spike in orders without delay.

Concrete Companies

Concrete companies can also avail themselves of corporate vehicle services. Sometimes, you just need an extra concrete cutter. Why buy this expensive equipment if you only need it for a short time? Lease a cutter using a heavy equipment rental service to finish your job faster and do it within budget.

Concrete companies also periodically need extra concrete mixers. Companies like Diamond Tools rent portable and mix-and-go units. If you need to lease a concrete or mortar mixing truck, try United Rentals, which offers gas-powered and electric concrete and mortar mixers.

Local Tours

Perhaps you operate a business that offers local tours, such as those in New Orleans servicing the historical graveyards or in Los Angeles servicing celebrity homes and movie studios. Don’t let a damaged passenger van delay your business operations! A car service or corporate vehicle rental service can solve the problem for you. Lease a 10-,12-, or 15-passenger van from Hertz or another vehicle rental company that offers business rentals.

Limousine Rentals Without a Driver

Maybe you operate a limo service and want to capitalize on a particularly busy time, such as a sports tournament, convention, or conference. Use a rental service like Turo to temporarily lease a limousine or other luxury car without a driver. You supply the driver!

Construction Vehicles

Projects in construction can take place in far-flung areas. You might construct the first buildings in an area, meaning that the area lacks essential utilities, such as water lines. If you need to haul large amounts of water to your job site or you need extra equipment to complete a construction job, turn to a heavy-equipment vehicle rental company.

What can you find at such firms? Companies like Big Rentz offer water tankers and dump trucks. Barco Trucks rents ¾ ton heavy-duty four-wheel drive pickup trucks with lease periods as short as one month. Choose a month-to-month lease if you’re not sure of the end date for a project.

The Cat Rental Store offers every machine and vehicle Caterpillar makes for short- or long-term rentals. From bulldozers to wheel excavators, the Cat Store rents it. You can also rent a generator to provide electricity for power tools and your construction company’s office trailer.

Accessibility Companies

Somewhat new to the list of corporate vehicle services, accessibility companies now offer items that empower those who experience mobility issues. Some of these firms offer vehicles outfitted with hand controls, and vans or SUVs outfitted with a chair lift to accommodate drivers who use a wheelchair or mobility chair. If you purchase your fleet vehicles, you can contract to have an accessibility company modify your company vehicles.

Also, consider contracting with one of these firms to install devices, such as a stair climber or escalator at your place of business. Outfitting your offices with these types of devices can empower employees, clients, and vendors with mobility issues who walk with canes, walkers, or crutches. The simple installation of such a device can make entry and egress easier for them.

Getting Started With Corporate Vehicle Services

Granted, when most people think of corporate vehicle services, they think of sedan fleet rentals or a car and driver service, but this massive industry offers much more than that. No matter what type of business you open, once it grows, you’ll need a vehicle fleet. It may make financial sense for you to purchase a few sedans or CUVs as company cars, but if you want to avoid the expense of purchasing a fleet of skid-steers, you can.

The vast field of commercial vehicle services offers every type of vehicle for lease. Many businesses use a mix of purchased vehicles and leased ones. By utilizing companies that offer short-term or month-to-month leases, your business can affordably acquire the necessary equipment and only pay for the time you use it. Leveraging these options can make acquiring the right equipment easier.

Whether you purchase or lease, your business still needs good credit. Newly launched businesses may avail themselves of a temporary vehicle using car rental services like Enterprise or Hertz. U-Haul provides a source for vans and trucks of various sizes.

When your business grows to the point where you need to build a business fleet, consider your budget and staff. Purchasing a fleet means hiring a mechanic to care for them, but many lease programs include maintenance. Meet with your accountant to determine the scenario that works best for you.



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