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Best Semi Truck Financing for Owner Operators

Semi truck financing is different from personal vehicle financing and similar small business loans. In fact, most banks don’t offer commercial vehicle financing. However, commercial vehicle lending companies specialize in providing exactly what you need to finance your semi truck. 

Because they tend to be smaller companies that understand the unique demands on owner operators, these companies are much more willing to work with any financial situation. We’ve compiled the top five semi truck financing companies to help you find a lender and get trucking.

Quicklook: Best Semi Truck Financing for Owner Operators 

  • Best For New Owner Operators: CAG Truck Capital
  • Best For Zero Down Payment: Quest Capital 
  • Best For Bad Credit: Firstmark Financial
  • Best For Same Day Funding: Balboa Capital
  • Best For No Personal Guarantee: Commercial Fleet Financing 

5 Best Semi Truck Financing Options for Owner Operators

These companies help owner operators in any situation finance a semi truck. Whether your situation involves previous bankruptcies or if you need zero-down semi truck financing, these lenders will work with you. 

CAG Truck Capital

CAG Truck Capital

This alternative lender offers commercial truck financing regardless of credit score. For new owner-operators and start-up businesses, specifically, CAG has established processes for pre-qualification and a simple financing application. They also accept high mileage trucks and borrowers with current tax liens or bankruptcy.

Best For: New owner operators and start-up businesses

Credit Requirements: None

Minimum Percentage Down Payment: 35% minimum down for bankruptcy, tax liens, and credit under 600, 10% for established owner operators

Financing Program Options: Customized

Funding Speed: 3 to 7 days 

Loan Maximum: Unknown 

Loan Terms: Varies

Special Features:

  •  Will help borrowers rebuild their credit
  •  Work with open bankruptcy
  •  Online application
  •  Early payoff option
  •  Helps with early trade-in and insurance claims


  •  No security deposits or fees
  •  Accept high mileage
  •  Accept any credit
  •  Pre-qualification option


  •  Higher down payment
  •  No same-day financing

Quest Capital

Quest Capital

This commercial vehicle financing lender offers semi truck financing with no down payment. The company works with owner operators and allows early payoffs and online applications.

Best For: Zero down payment plans

Credit Requirements: None 

Minimum Percentage Down Payment: None

Financing Program Options: Commercial trucks and engine overhaul financing

Funding Speed: 3 to 5 days 

Loan Maximum: $250,000 

Loan Terms: Varies 

Special Features

  •  100% financing programs
  •  Online application
  •  Allows bankruptcies
  •  Accepts charge-offs and slow payments


  •  0% down payment guarantee
  •  No additional fees
  •  Fast funding
  •  No restrictions on loan use


  •  No same-day financing
  •  Higher monthly payments

Firstmark Financial

Firstmark Financial

This financer covers the U.S. and Canada. Firstmark offers commercial vehicle financing for any commercial vehicle and specializes in owner operators with bad credit. 

Best For: Bad credit and longer repayment terms

Credit Requirements: None 

Minimum Percentage Down Payment: None

Financing Program Options: Various

Funding Speed: 1 to 2 weeks 

Loan Maximum: 100% equipment value 

Loan Terms: Up to 25 years 

Special Features

  •  Quick application processing
  •  Online application
  •  Works with new owner operators and startups


  •  0% down payment options
  •  Covers complete value of the commercial vehicle
  •  Longer repayment terms


  •  No same-day financing
  •  Higher interest rates

Balboa Capital

Balboa Capital

An alternative lender known for same-day funding, Balboa does require borrowers to meet certain business history qualifications. They cover most types of commercial vehicles, but won’t accept certain negative credit markers, like bankruptcy.

Best For: Same-day funding

Credit Requirements: None 

Minimum Percentage Down Payment: Varies

Financing Program Options: Small business, equipment, and commercial

Funding Speed: Same day 

Loan Maximum: $500,000

Loan Terms: Varies 

Special Features

  •  Same-day funding
  •  Online application
  •  No credit requirement


  •  Fast approval
  •  High loan maximum
  •  Flexible loan terms


  • Must have at least 1 year business history
  • Must have at least $100,000 annual revenue
  • Requires a 600 credit score
  • No 0% down payment

Commercial Fleet Financing

Commercial Fleet Financing

Commercial Fleet Financing offers financing for light- and heavy-duty commercial vehicles. Unlike other lenders, this company will protect the owner operator’s personal assets if they are unable to make repayments. It also offers fast approvals. 

Best For: Protecting personal assets

Credit Requirements: 640 

Minimum Percentage Down Payment: Starts at 0%, varies by situation

Financing Program Options: Commercial vehicle loans

Funding Speed: Same day 

Loan Maximum: $500,000 

Loan Terms: Up to 9 years 

Special Features

  •  Fast approval
  •  Low down payment


  •  Same-day funding
  •  Low rates starting at 5.5%


  •  Moderate credit score requirement
  •  Short repayment terms for lower rates
  •  Loan terms vary based on situation

What Is Semi Truck Financing for Owner Operators?

When you lease commercial vehicles, you make a monthly payment for use of those vehicles. Financing for owner operators, on the other hand, allows you to work toward owning your own semi truck. 

Working with a bank, trucking company, or alternative financing company, you determine a payment plan that makes sense and, in effect, take out a loan to purchase your truck. Obviously, this comes with significant advantages, but also added responsibility. If you fail to make loan payments, for example, your truck can be repossessed. 

How Does Owner Operator Semi Truck Financing Work?

As an owner operator, you choose the truck you want to purchase, either from a trucking company you already work for or from an outside vendor. Certain trucking companies offer incentives for owner operators who purchase their used vehicles, including pre-existing arrangements with financing companies. 

Financing companies will look at your financial history to determine a financing plan they believe you can reasonably maintain. This involves submitting various financial information or small business documents if you own your own business. The better your financial history, the better and more flexible the financing options. You likely need to submit:

  • Three years of personal and business tax returns
  • Current business balance sheet
  • Bank statements for the past 12 months
  • Current CDL
  • EIN for your business
  • Business licenses/certifications
  • USDOT number
  • FMCSA motor carrier number

Once you are approved for financing, you sign a loan agreement, and the semi truck is yours. You’ll need to continue making your monthly payments until the truck is paid off, of course. 

What Is The Average Cost to Finance a Semi-Truck?

Though new semi trucks cost around $150,000 or more, it’s more common to finance a used truck to reduce the total expense. Depending on the vehicle, you may need your loan to cover anywhere from $20,000 to $250,000.

Interest rates from commercial vehicle financing companies vary dramatically, ranging anywhere from 3% to 30%. The rate you are approved for will depend heavily on your credit score and financial history. No credit check semi truck financing, for instance, will mean a much higher monthly payment and interest rate. Loan terms can run anywhere from a few months to around 7 years. 

You may qualify for zero-down semi truck financing if you have an exceptional credit score and history. Generally, however, you will need to consider which of the available loan terms make the most sense for you. 

You’ll need to be confident that you can consistently make your monthly payments and you’ll need to pay the lump sum of the initial down payment. Keep in mind that some companies charge additional application, appraisal, and credit check fees, too. Don’t forget insurance costs, either!

Considerations With Semi Truck Financing For Owner Operators 

The semi truck financing process is relatively simple. Wherever you apply, you’ll need to gather the necessary application documents, which may vary slightly depending on the lender. Be sure to check that you meet the minimum requirements for that financing company before applying for semi truck financing. 

Be sure your financial commitment is worth it, too. Look for a truck that is less than 10 years old and under 600,000 miles. After all, as an owner operator, you will be responsible for maintenance and repair costs, on top of your monthly semi truck financing payment.

Credit Requirements

Though alternative lenders tend to require lower personal credit scores than banks, you will still need to meet a minimum score of 400 to be considered by most lenders. However, commercial vehicle lenders will generally consider other factors that will expand your options if you have a low credit score. 

Lenders may look at previous liens, delinquencies, homeownership, small business history, and other collateral options, for example. In general, primary disqualifying conditions include open bankruptcy, delinquent child support payment, and recent vehicle repossession. 

Semi truck financing companies want to be confident that you will be able to maintain your monthly payments, so both you and the lender are happy. 

Multiple Financing Program Options 

The primary advantage of owner operator semi truck financing is that commercial vehicle lenders provide multiple financing programs, or MFPs, based on the specific demands of the trucking industry. 

Essentially, these lenders offer custom financing solutions based on the unique needs of owner operators. These custom solutions work in your favor as an applicant, involving more lenient credit score requirements, for example. 

Funding Speed

The process for semi truck financing moves fast for owner operators. Lenders have established processes that move quickly. Generally, you can expect to go from initial application to signing within 30 days. That said, a few lenders offer same-day funding for established small business owners.

Be sure to have the specific truck selected and the down payment amount set aside before beginning the process, because it moves quickly!

Loan Maximum 

While banks generally offer to finance up to 100% of the equipment or vehicle value, alternative lenders tend to offer between 70% and 95%, though it’s often more for highly qualified borrowers. Keep in mind that you will need to come up with the remaining balance as a down payment before you can begin financing your semi truck. 

Time in Business with CDL 

Commercial vehicle lenders often give more weight to experience than traditional lenders, like banks. The longer you have had your CDL and the more industry experience and positive business history you demonstrate, the better semi truck financing options will be available. 

Hit the Highway

Understanding your options is the best way to equip yourself to find the best semi truck financing option for you. Get started financing a semi truck and get on the road as an owner operator!


How Do I Get Semi Truck Financing With Bad Credit?

How to get financing for a semi truck with bad credit means finding a commercial vehicle lender who will weigh other factors, such as business history, more heavily. However, you may need to accept a larger down payment or higher interest rate.

What Credit Score Is Needed To Buy A Semi Truck?

You will need a minimum personal credit score of 400 to buy a semi truck, unless you are willing to accept the less advantageous loan terms of a lender that offers no credit check semi truck financing.

How Many Years Can You Finance A Semi Truck?

You can finance a semi truck for up to 7 years in most cases. Some lenders may offer up to 10 years.

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