A Q&A with Mike DePew
In the world of ITI and moving floor trailers, shiny and new may also mean less expensive.
Mike DePew, owner of CMD Trailers and Leasing, Inc., has been in the business for 36 years. He’s seen the advent of moving floor trailers, and their rise in popularity over time due to the speed and ease with which they empty different types of cargo.
In our conversation with DePew, we discussed ITI trailers and moving floor products — specifically, how owner-operators can save thousands in expenses and build better equity through trading in that old trailer model for a new one.
T2T: Hi Mike, thanks for talking today! Let’s talk first about the moving floor trailer, and what kind of driver primarily benefits from this product.
DePew: The moving floor trailer is used in the wood industry for hauling chips, which can be used for paper or fuel by burning chips to make steam. It’s also used in agriculture, mostly for animal feed, but for everything from potting soil to mulch and even bringing produce in and out of the field.
T2T: What are the main walking floor brands?
DePew: There are two main brands, Keith and Hallco. Hallco produces the Live Floors® systems and Keith produces the Walking Floor® systems.
T2T: So, let’s say you’re an owner-operator trying to decide between a new or used ITI moving floor trailer. What are the considerations?
DePew: There are some really significant differences. Newer trailers are so much lighter and stronger in contrast to those that are 10 years old, so while you may save a bit more upfront by buying a used model, you’ll lose money over time because you’ll miss out on the additional payload you’d be running with the new model. New trailers are more efficient, and because some rules of the road that have changed, you can haul additional payload by using these new models.
T2T: Can you quantify how much more you can haul with a new ITI trailer, versus an old one?
DePew: It’s not as much about hauling more, as it is about hauling faster. You can haul more per day with a new trailer, which may come out to $50 more per day, which doesn’t seem like much. But you add that up, and that’s $250 a week, $1,000 a month more you’re earning just by using a new ITI model.
T2T: It sounds like a new ITI trailer actually winds up costing less than a used one!
DePew: Here’s another scenario. I’ve had owner-operators come to me who are 60 years old, and they’re trying to save up to retire in five years. If you’re running an older model that’s worth about $25,000 right now, in five years when you go to sell it, you’ll have nothing — a $15,000 asset at best.
Now, assuming a new trailer is $60,000, we already know it’s going to haul more payload. You won’t be digging in your pockets every month to make your payment on it, because you’re already earning an extra $1,000 or so by having the newer technology.
But the even better part is that in five years, instead of only having a trailer worth $15,000, you’ll now have an asset that’s worth $40,000. That’s a nice nest egg, a great retirement check to look forward to! Not to mention you’ll be running all that additional payload over the next five years.
T2T: That sounds like a smart way to do business. So what are the next steps, if an owner-operator is interested in buying one of your ITI trailers, if they’re not local to CMD?
DePew: They can go to Trucker to Trucker’s CMD vendor page, and give us a call at 904-766-9703 to get a credit app filled out. We offer financing through several banks, with very competitive rates. Then we’ll spec a trailer and deliver it through Trucker to Trucker to anywhere in the US or Canada.
T2T: Thanks so much for sharing, Mike!
DePew: You’re welcome. Thank you.
CMD specializes in the sale of pre-owned straight trucks and Class 8 trucks, and both new and used trailers. The sales lot is located in Northeast Florida near the Port of Jacksonville. Shop tractors and trailers on the CMD Trailers website, and don’t forget to share our twitter page these tips on owning a new ITI trailer that pays for itself.