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Navigating Through Major Equipment Purchases

Talmidge Priest

When Talmidge Priest, owner of Tal-Baby Enterprises, a logging and trucking company in Centreville, Mississippi, purchased a logging company from his father, he took on more than a new business. With his new position came new responsibilities, including the most important one – providing his eight employees with quality equipment.


As a seventh-generation logger, Priest knows the value of having reliable equipment on the job. When it came time to purchase a new feller buncher, Priest realized he needed to make a financially smart decision. For that reason, he chose to use John Deere Financial.


"Using John Deere Financial was a smart decision for me financially. My local dealer was also helpful throughout the purchasing process. He brought it out, we ran it for two weeks, came to an agreement on the price and have loved it ever since."


In today's economy, loggers are regularly faced with difficult purchase decisions. Due to the perceptions that strict lending requirements have made it nearly impossible to get credit approvals, loggers are less likely to pursue new equipment purchases despite an abundance of attractive financing options.


As Priest discovered, obtaining financing is easier than you think. Often young loggers are able to take advantage of these opportunities. By following these few tips, loggers can capitalize on the various financing options and keep their businesses up and running.


First, it is important to be upfront and honest with lenders about your current credit status and business position. By highlighting bright spots in the business, along with disclosing any information that would be concerning, lenders are able to make an informed decision.


Be sure to share the following information with lenders to increase the likelihood for assistance:


  • Your most recent and complete balance sheet and income statement, preferably prepared by an accountant
  • Recent individual and business tax returns
  • Work-in-progress timber contracts, as well as future contracts that have been secured
  • A copy of your business plan for the next 12-24 months, or projections over the same period
  • A list of credit references, such as banks or other lenders, timber mills, landowners, or other folks you do business with on a credit basis.


Once you have received approval and determined what equipment you would like to purchase, discuss additional financing options with your dealer. Priest, who worked with his local John Deere dealer to finance his equipment, was able to secure a zero-percent interest rate for three years. Some financing companies offer special payback options or deals to make financing more enticing and beneficial.


By reaching out to lenders and your dealer, young loggers can navigate through major equipment purchases without concerns and enjoy the rewarding aspects of logging like Priest. "For me, my favorite part of the day is the end when the loader man calls me and tells me how many loads we got. It's a great feeling."