Skip to Main Content

Best semi-truck financing in June 2024

May 29, 2024
Bankrate logo The Bankrate promise
At Bankrate we strive to help you make smarter financial decisions. While we adhere to strict editoral integritythis post may contain references to products from our partners. Here's an explanation for how we make money.

Financing is the next best option for small business owners who can't afford to purchase a semi truck with their own funds. Even if you buy one used, you'll likely spend a minimum of $50,000, which is still quite a bit for a new business to pay out of pocket. 

Between a down payment, interest and fees, semi-truck financing can be expensive. But it allows you to pay for the truck in installments, making it a quick way to grow and expand your business. 

Check out our top picks below for semi-truck financing and some tips to help choose the best lender for you.

|

Filter results

Close X

Best for bad credit

4.6

Loan amount
$25k- $400K
Term: 3 - 15 months
Interest rate
1.11 factor rate
Fastest funding
1 business day
Apply nowArrow Right

on BusinessLoans.com

Best for loan and lease options

4.4

Loan amount
$10k- $500K
Term: 4 - 18 months
Interest rate
Factor Rates Starting at 1.1%
Fastest funding
1 business day
Apply nowArrow Right

on partner site

Best for traditional lending

4.3

Loan amount
$10k- $200K
Term: 12 - 60 months
Interest rate
Starting at 6.75%
Fastest funding
Not disclosed

Best for low rates

4.3

Loan amount
$10k- $500K
Term: 12 - 60 months
Interest rate
Starting at 5.99% APR
Fastest funding
1 business day
Read our reviewArrow Right

on Bankrate

Compare the best semi-truck financing in June 2024

Compare the best lenders for semi-truck loans in the table below to find out what each lender is best for, their credit score requirements, loan amounts they offer and time in business requirements. 

LENDER BEST FOR MIN. CREDIT SCORE LOAN AMOUNT MIN. TIME IN BUSINESS
Bad credit 550 $10,000 to $10 million 6 months
Loan and lease options 660 Up to $150,000 6 months
Low rates 600 Up to $250,000 N/A
Traditional bank Not stated $25,000 and up 24 months
CAG Truck Capital Industry expertise 600 Not stated N/A
Balboa Capital Fair credit 620 Up to $500,000 12 months
Truck Lenders USA Truck financing options 675 $15,000 to $250,000 24 months
Commercial Fleet Financing Quick application 640 $10,000 to $1,000,000 Not stated
TAB Bank Semi-truck banking and loans Not stated Not stated Not stated

A closer look at our top semi-truck financing options

After reviewing the table above, take a closer look at lenders who may meet your needs. You can learn more about why they’re a top lender, who they’re best for and any features that make them stand out. 

Credibly: Best for bad credit

Overview: Credibly is an online lender that has helped over 30,000 U.S. small businesses with funding. Unlike traditional lenders like banks and credit unions, Credibly's loans are available to business owners with bad credit. The online application expedites the financing process. You can prequalify in 10 minutes, loans can be approved in as little as four hours and funded the same day. 

National Funding: Best for loan and lease options

Overview: National Funding offers equipment financing up to $150,000 with standard terms of 24 to 60 months. The lender starts interest rates at 4.99 percent simple interest, though this doesn’t account for additional fees. That said, you can lower your interest even further by taking advantage of its early payoff discount of 6 percent for equipment loans. Discounts on interest are rare for business lenders, though you can typically avoid interest by paying off the loan early.

Triton Capital: Best for low rates

Overview: Triton Capital is an online lender that offers business equipment, working capital and SBA loans. Qualified business owners could get fast funding one to two days after the loan has been approved, which can take between two and four hours. The usual timeline for equipment loans takes several days to several weeks to hear the lending decision.

Unlike other lenders, Triton Capital allows borrowers to make payments monthly, quarterly, seasonally, annually and semi-annually. These options allow maximum payment flexibility for the semi-truck owner.

Bank of America: Best for traditional bank

Overview: As the second-largest bank in the U.S., Bank of America provides a solid option for business loans. The ability to get in-person support in most states gives the bank an edge over other equipment lenders. Its equipment loans are offered for businesses looking to finance a vehicle over 2.5 tons, starting at $25,000 and up.

CAG Truck Capital: Best for semi-truck industry expertise

Overview:  CAG Truck Capital specializes in semi-truck lending to owner-operators and semi-truck dealers, even if you’re a startup or have bad credit or no credit. Not only can the lender finance your semi truck, but its loans also come with an engine overhaul option. If your truck is ever in need of an engine overhaul, you can use the overhaul loan to get repairs or a new engine at a certified facility. No other equipment lender offers these flexible loan options.

Balboa Capital: Best for fair credit

Overview: Balboa Capital provides semi-truck financing for new and used semi trucks of up to $350,000 or $500,000, depending on the collateral provided. The lender offers a quick online application with same-day funding, a much faster timeline than the usual several days or weeks you’d wait with other lenders. While some business owners may hesitate to work with an online lender, Balboa Capital is owned by banking giant Ameris Bank and has funded over $8 billion in business loans.

Truck Lenders USA: Best for truck financing options

Overview: Truck Lenders USA specializes in financing a variety of commercial vehicles, including box trucks, semi trucks and fleets of vehicles. You can get truck financing with 24- to 60-month terms for commercial trucks or trailers seven years old or newer. These are standard features in the world of truck financing. But its jumbo leases up to $1 million offer more flexibility in getting the right semi truck than you’ll find elsewhere.

Commercial Fleet Financing: Best for quick application

Overview: Commercial Fleet Financing has funded over $1.5 billion in transportation equipment loans, showcasing experience in the industry above other online lenders. Loan amounts and rates are not disclosed, but repayment terms range from three to nine years versus the usual five years offered by most equipment lenders. Commercial Fleet Financing also has a sister company called Fresh Start Equipment Finance, which works with business owners who struggle to get approved based on credit requirements.

TAB Bank: Best for semi-truck banking and loan

Overview: TAB Bank is an online lender providing a variety of banking and lending products. Its lineup mirrors the choices you’d find at a traditional bank and includes equipment financing designed for transportation companies and truck factoring. 

It doesn’t disclose its rates or terms, but it provides one-on-one support to walk through the lending process with you. It works to ensure that you understand the loan terms before you sign on the dotted line. This support is reassuring since personalized support is sometimes lacking from online banks.

What is semi-truck financing?

Semi-truck financing is when you take out a loan or lease to help cover the costs of a commercial vehicle. Similar to other types of business loans, it involves taking out a lump sum of cash for a fee and then repaying it over time with interest.

Average semi-truck interest rates can range from 6 percent to 35 percent or higher. The lowest interest rates are reserved for business owners with the best credit who have been operating their business for more than two years and can show good and consistent annual revenue.

Depending on the lender, you may be able to apply for a term loan, which can usually cover any type of business expense. Or you may need to apply for equipment or commercial vehicle financing. 

How does semi-truck financing work?

When it comes to semi-truck financing, the borrower applies for a loan or lease through a bank, credit union or online lender. Depending on the lender, you may need to provide a down payment. Usually, the semi-truck acts as collateral, so you won’t have to provide an additional asset to secure the loan. 

You may have to provide a personal guarantee, which is a promise to repay the loan even if your business defaults on the loan. So even if you are registered as a limited liability company (LLC), a personal guarantee will still make you liable for repaying your business debts.

The application process and approval times can vary, with online lenders usually providing faster approval and funding times. You’ll need to provide specific information like semi-truck age and mileage. 

If you meet the lender's loan eligibility requirements and are approved, you’ll receive financing to purchase your semi truck and will begin repaying the loan based on the terms laid out in your loan agreement.

Types of semi-truck financing 

Business owners have different types of semi-truck loans available to them when purchasing a semi truck, including commercial truck loans, equipment financing, equipment lines of credit and SBA loans.

Pros and cons of semi-truck financing

 
 

Pros:

  • Fixed, monthly payments make the purchase of a semi truck more affordable.
  • Spreads out the cost of a large purchase
  • Accessible to startups and bad-credit borrowers
  • Fast funding, depending on lender
  • Tax deductions on loan interest may be available

Cons:

  • High purchase cost
  • High interest and loan fees
  • Personal guarantee makes you liable if your business defaults
  • Down payment may be required
  • Requires time in business 

Who should get semi-truck financing? 

Many business owners turn to semi-truck financing when they don't have the funds available to make such a large, expensive purchase. If you're looking to start or grow your business, semi-truck financing could be the most viable option. Not only does it allow you to pay off the semi truck over time, but it also has the potential to build your business credit score, reduce out-of-pocket startup costs and free up your business's cash flow.

Lightbulb

Bankrate Insight

As you search for a lender, be on the lookout for red flags and other indicators of predatory lending, such as: 

  • Unclear terms. Make sure your total loan, repayment schedule, interest rates and other costs line up with what you were expecting.
  • High-pressure tactics. Don’t rush into a loan just because an aggressive lender is eager for you to sign a loan agreement. Try to work with lenders who give you time to look over a loan agreement and compare with other lenders.
  • Double sales tax: Make sure you don’t pay sales tax twice for a leased semi truck you decide to purchase. 
  • Hidden fees: Watch out for unexpected fees like origination, prepayment and maintenance fees. Look over your contract carefully. If there are excessive fees and penalties, get a few more loan offers and compare.
  • Advance fee loan scam: Lenders shouldn’t ask for any upfront payments before an application is reviewed and approved. This type of fraud typically targets borrowers with low credit.

Where to get semi-truck financing

If you're interested in where to find semi-truck financing, loans are available through banks, credit unions, direct lenders and online lenders. Loan eligibility requirements will vary as well as loan amounts, terms, interest rate, fees and funding time.

How to manage a semi-truck business loan

Managing your semi-truck loan payments comes with effective money management for your business as a whole. You can start by using projected revenue from your current contracts with trucking companies, warehouses or other clients. Work in your loan payments as a line item alongside other business expenses. That way, you can track where the loan payments fit in and what expenses you need to cut when revenue dips. 

Other strategies for managing business funds include automating your loan payments for timeliness and staying aware of all debt obligations. Many lenders like to see revenue of at least 1.25 times greater than your debts, called the debt-service coverage ratio.

Alternatives to semi-truck business loans

While getting a semi-truck loan makes the most sense for financing a truck, you can also use other business loans. The main feature to look for is a high enough loan amount to cover the entire semi-truck purchase. Some alternatives to consider:

  • Business term loan: A standard business loan with potentially high loan amounts and fixed repayment terms, such as two or five years.
  • Business line of credit: Similar to a credit card, a secured or unsecured line of credit is a revolving credit line that borrowers can withdraw from when they need to cover short-term business expenses. 
  • Equipment lease: A type of rental agreement that lets you pay a monthly fee to use the leasing company’s semi truck, possibly with an option to buy at the end of the lease. Insurance costs can be higher when leasing.

Frequently asked questions about semi-truck financing

How we choose the best semi-truck loan lenders

Bankrate's trusted small business loan industry expertise

57

years in business

30

lenders reviewed

22

loan features weighed

770

data points collected

To choose the best semi-truck financing, we researched banks, online lenders and direct lenders. We looked for lenders with relaxed eligibility requirements and programs that are specifically geared toward helping business owners secure financing to cover the cost of a semi truck. We then considered features that make loans affordable and accessible to businesses with different characteristics and needs, including interest rates, whether the loans are secured or unsecured, minimum annual revenue and fees. Additionally, these lenders were evaluated for notable qualities such as funding speed and nontraditional eligibility criteria.
 
When evaluating lenders, we use a 22-point scale to measure quality in five key areas: