More than six years ago, we started our auto transport business. We had no idea all the ways we could cash in because our business is mobile. We were excited to learn of all the extra tax advantages of running a business out of our home. However, that first year we would learn that there were many more benefits available to us.
We knew others in the community who owned traditional businesses. We watched as they worked years with no time for vacations, family or fun. Watching our friends we were afraid to take time for ourselves. We knew we did not want that responsibility or the limitations.
What we did not consider was they had a storefront we did not. Shop owners can not simply close when they want to. Travel and time off come at a high price for the business owner. Our friends do not see revenue if their doors are not open and they are not available.
However, for our auto transport business it is different. Travel and time out of the office are easier to schedule. When you work from a home office being mobile allows you to take your business with you, even to the Hawaiian IsIands.
Who says work has to be menial and boring?
Our first year in business was full of learning experiences. Having come from banking it was not easy to start thinking like a business owner right away. Like most people, I was used to rules. Regulations and processes were already in place before I started a job.
Now it was my turn to make the rules. The Department of Transportation made and monitored the regulations I needed to learn and follow. The hardest part for me to learn was how to balance my work hours. Have you ever tried to walk by a ringing phone and not answer it?
Determining how to put a system into place the daily tasks of the business came easy to me. It is really all in finding a system that works for you. When speaking with a client it was natural for me to take detailed notes. From those notes, it was an easy transition to the data input for completing an auto transport order.
Compiling the file folder was a snap. Name, shipping origination and destination were necessary for identifying the order along with the software generated order number. After the client had paid for services, we filed the folder in its appropriate slot in the cabinet.
Although it might seem to some a menial type of business, the exciting part is working with the customers. Each one is as unique as the sands on the beaches of Hawaii…no two are the same. Everyone’s personality is different. Some are subdued some are eccentric and others flamboyant. Each day is a new adventure.
Auto transport serves customers need
Over the course of our first year, many of our transports were unique. Some days I found myself thinking about being transported to the destination we were shipping the car.
Most auto transports are your typical “point A to point B within the continental United States” transports. Occasionally though clients needs will be more exotic. We have shipped client’s vehicles to Alaska, Puerto Rico, Guam, England, Russia, Australia, China, Africa, Costa Rica and the Pacific Islands. Hawaii and Alaska are popular seasonal shipping destinations.
The research involved in learning the logistics of these moves makes brokering anything but mundane and menial. Challenging research and documentation takes your business to a completely new level. Hawaii in particular remains our favorite because we were able to travel with our best friends and see the fruits of our labor thanks to one of our customers.
One auto transport customer was shipping his granddaughter’s car from northern California to Hawaii. By working closely with this customer throughout the transport process we became friends. We talked about the islands and how it had always been a dream of mine to travel there one day. It never dawned on me that we could go there and kill two birds with one stone.
He helped me put together a nice little travel package through his connections. He also put together a list of places to go, things to do and where the best food on the island was served. His suggestions for beaches, snorkeling and unique shows were perfect.
By building relationships with customers in your business you can both help each other. When you treat people right and not just for personal gain it always comes back to you in one way or another. Our customer was more than happy with the Hawaiian Island connection our transport service provided. Helping us get to Maui was his way of thanking us to help fulfill a dream of ours.
Because my friend and I were both an auto transport broker, we were mobile. We packed our laptops, forwarded our phones and arranged to work from the condominium. Taking our business very seriously, we made a day trip to visit the Matson port in Kahului, Maui and see the shipping operation we worked so closely with.
Build your auto transport business and your life… on your terms
Imagine waking each morning to the sound of pounding surf, right outside of your window. Think about being able to hear the birds chirping, palm trees swaying. Visualize watching the canoe clubs make their way around the bay one stroke at a time. All the while, you are sitting on the lanai sipping your hot rich Kona coffee from your over-sized mug.
That scenario is real, that is what we enjoyed with our friends for two glorious weeks in Kihei, Maui Hawaii. After a leisurely morning, we both would boot up our computers to work for a few hours. With laser sharp focus we calculated our customers quote requests. Limiting ourselves to reduced office hours we returned phone calls. This allowed us to schedule and dispatch the auto transports quickly. Our customers appreciated that we still cared for their needs even while on vacation.
That is the beauty of building your own auto transport business. To realize tax benefits, enjoy freedom of time. To live life on your own terms. No job can give you these things.
Yes, its hard work what business do you know does not take hard work? There is even some sweat and a few tears some days. Anything worth its salt will have its sacrifices along the way. Nevertheless, being mobile while building your own business allows you to live life… on your own terms.
For those potential clients out there looking for a way to ship their cars to the Hawaiian Islands your connection awaits you. Auto transport crosses even the Pacific Ocean with services available each and every week.