da March 30, 2023

Find Out How to Become a Freight Broker


Where did the word “broker” come from? It appeared in our language at the beginning of the 20th century. This is the name of an intermediary in various transactions: the sale and purchase of goods, securities, or currency, or the conclusion of various contracts. Many believe that the word “broker” comes from the Old English “broke” – to exchange money. Such specialists operate in many areas. They are an important link between those who provide various services, such as cargo transportation and their direct consumers.

A freight broker for trucking is engaged in work related to the logistics of the movement of goods from one location to another. He has in his hands a conditional product (cargo) and provides conveyance companies with the opportunity to deliver this freight.

What is included in its activities?

It’s important in order to become a truck broker to call customers for the cartage of goods and dispatchers of the haulage company. A decent truck broker pays great attention to the need to check customers and make sure everything goes as it has to.

What does a specialist’s office look like?

If you want to know how to become a freight broker, you need to know about his/her office element. Comfortable furniture, computers, printers, fax machines, copiers, a landline phone, a cell phone, high-speed Internet, and brokerage software are must-haves. The software will automate many of the functions that track trucks. The broker trucking can also be performed due to the special paid programs, such as Tailwind, Broker PRO, Freightview, etc.

Who can become a freight broker?

It’s easy to become a broker for trucking with secondary education. The future broker freight has to live in the United States with the status of a legal immigrant, and have fluent in English. While being a beginner, find out how to become a broker for trucking online due to self-development in the marked area and completing the courses. It’s rather profitable to also spend time compiling a customer database.

People, who have worked in the trucking industry, whether as truckers or employees of freight brokerage businesses, find it easier to enter the industry. It is much easier for truckers, for example, to become a trucking broker and succeed in this direction because these are two interconnected professions. Drivers are well versed in the roads, in distances, in time, and can defend their point of view with much greater confidence, both in front of dispatchers of shipment companies and in front of cargo owners. The work itself is rather stressful but interesting and well-paid.

How much does a broker get?

The broker’s freight salary depends on the profit of the deal he/she made and on the number of those deals. The person has a percentage for each contract. Note that the average broker’s salary can start at $35,000 per year and go up to $50,000 (according to the US Bureau of Statistics), so the interest in how to become a freight broker is predictable. The highest-paid state for brokers is the District of Columbia, where an employee in this field can receive up to $95,000 a year.

The more professional the specialist, the more tracks he can serve. A broker can have 3-5 trucks at the same time but each truck can generate income up to $1,000 per month. Some companies prefer to pay commissions to their employees based on their performance (if we are talking about hired freight brokers in the US), while others prefer to pay them a fixed salary. The freight broker business owner undoubtedly earns more than a hired employee.

Broker training: which courses to choose?

Training is not mandatory for people with experience in the business but for beginners who have a great desire to become a truck broker. Special courses help them to start everything on a positive wave. The duration is 2 to 4 weeks on average. There are various trainings, mostly virtual, to teach people how to start freight brokerage in the USA. Training with experts will teach you not only the basic moments of obtaining a broker for truckers licenses, insurance guarantees, or bonds necessary to get started but also the tricks of trading.

Dennis Brown, the Freight Broker Bootcamp owner, makes several videos about courses in the brokerage profession freely available to watch. Scott Woods of the Transportation Training Group ensures that freight brokers trained by his school are among the most successful owners of a profitable company. The posted videos on the Youtube page give an idea of ​​the work itself and explain the form of education at the Scott Woods school. Moreover, it becomes much cleaner how to start a freight brokerage.

Self-learning books on brokerage are available for $20 and up

  • Start Your Own Freight Brokerage Business. This is a comprehensive guide covering topics such as getting started in business, getting a license, and a guarantee; organization and management of processes; hiring employees; brokerage marketing, and financial management.
  • The Freight Broker Training Guide. It provides a step-by-step process that businessmen must follow to start their brokerage business and to get the data on how to become a truck broker.
  • The book covers building relationships with shippers, paperwork, and advice on rates, billing, and payments.
  • The Freight Broker Training Manual. This manual is a practical tool for becoming a truck broker and his/her activity. It contains useful information about working with clients, teaches sales, and gives useful tips on calculating and negotiating rates.

Prices for courses may vary and depend on the set of topics and the duration of the courses. 

How to register a broker in the USA?

You must not only find out how to be a broker for trucking but first create a legal entity in order to start the licensing process with an FMCSA organization. It’s important to complete 7 steps to get a license. 

Step 1

Pick up an organization name and register your entrepreneurship to conduct activities in a legal way. You can easily find a free name that doesn’t belong to someone else. Choose the type of legal entity you wish to register with: Sole Proprietorship, Partnership, Limited Liability Company, or Corporation.

Step 2

A business plan helps apply for a line of credit at your bank. Available business plans should indicate the niche you are going to target and who your customers are. Entrepreneurship must include a basic strategy and the more you delve into the details of the business and market research, the better prepared you will be to meet your challenges. 

Step 3

A broker in the United States is regulated and controlled by the United States Department of Transportation and requires the license to operate as a freight broker and a USDOT number, which is issued as an application. The mentioned number must be submitted when applying through the FMCSA website for a Motor Carrier Authority license. You must also pay a one-time application fee of $300 in addition to completing the OP-1 Freight Forwarder Application Form. Selecting the Broker property or household goods option requires contact information for a person or entity and a USDOT number. The review period is 4-6 weeks.

Once your application has been approved, the FMCSA will mail your MC number. However, an MC number does not mean you can start a business. Once released, it is posted on the FMCSA registration page. Anyone who will discover a problem with your registration can appeal it.

Step 4

It’s essential to obtain a commercial bond to get MC authority from the FMCSA. Pay attention that bond requirements were increased to $75,000 in 2013 to ensure high industry standards and accountability. A bond is an additional line of credit for your business in this sense. You can still be linked to a bad credit program even if your credit score is far from perfect. You also will have to pay a slightly higher amount to reduce the associated risk. The best advice for lowering your price is to improve your credit score.

Step 5

Get insurance. Insurance can save your business from destruction. General cargo insurance premiums are about $1,500 per year.

Step 6

Brokers must register legal representatives or agents to receive notices and lawsuits in each state. This can be done using the BOC-3 form, which you must complete and submit to the FMCSA.

Step 7

Finally, you can expect to obtain a license or MC permit to become a trucking broker. The U.S. freight specialist license is not required or issued by the state. This license is federally regulated and you can start bidding, selling cargo, trying to improve your ratings, getting good reviews, and doing quality work after its receiving. The person creates his office, downloads the brokerage program to the computer, fills in the customer database, and the list of transport companies providing the service at the last stage of organizing a business.

Own a business or be part of the company?

You need to count on investments, which include registration costs, broker’s pledges, equipment and software, and operating expenses. Those experts who are hired by a large brokerage agency do not invest in someone else’s business. Their percentages for closing transportation contracts, respectively, will not be large. The initial cost of a mentioned business can range from $3,800, going up to $250,000 in large cases (such as international shipping). The beginning broker must have this amount in cash or through a line of credit.

Search for cargo and carriers

Only dispatchers have a database of truckers, so brokers must have several transport companies with whom to work, as well as constantly look for new customers for the transport of goods. The process is as follows. The cargo owner contacts the broker through a special search engine. As soon as the broker receives the cargo, he either already contacts his familiar carriers, or places his cargo in a search engine.

As for the time allowed for the driver to drive, he must do his job within 11 hours. 3 hours are given for the transshipment of cargo, and the rest of the time is for sleep. All information is recorded by the onboard computer in a log book. Of course, drivers spend more than 11 hours, brazenly forging information on the computer. When cops will find during the check that the driver spent more than the allotted time on the road, then he will be sent for a 10-hour rest, and they will also issue a fine that will worsen the rating of the company. The police work clearly and harmoniously in the USA. The car can be stopped for inspection anytime, anywhere. Therefore, the rating of companies sometimes directly depends on the driver.

The specialists of our company have all the necessary skills and documents to conduct full-fledged activities in the above-mentioned field. We are serious about fulfilling our obligations, think over competent routes that fully comply with all safety rules, and allow specialists to quickly deliver almost any cargo. Please consult with our staff to get answers to all your questions. Managers will listen to the wishes and offer the client an individual approach that will meet the customer’s requirements.