How to Become a Freight Broker in South Carolina

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How to Become a Freight Broker in South Carolina

Freight brokers can work for themselves and make a good income working in the logistics and transportation industries.

By serving the intermediary role and connecting shipping companies to truckers who can move the goods they have on hand, freight brokers help keep the supply chain moving and prevent shortages from occurring.

In exchange for helping to move these loads that would otherwise sit idle and potentially go to waste, the freight broker gets paid a commission.

When you work as a freight broker, you can work as much or as little as you want to bring in the level of income you desire.

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Freight Broker Duties in South Carolina

Freight brokers use their industry connections and skills to help shipping companies when they need carriers to move goods.

In some cases, these may be perishable goods that need to get to their destination before spoiling.

Other times, the loads can be made up of shelf-stable items that do not need refrigeration but still need to get delivered by a certain deadline.

Once the goods are moving, the freight broker’s job is not over.

The broker still has to track the shipment and provide updates to the shipping company.

Freight Brokers Licensing Requirements in South Carolina

As South Carolina does not have state-level licensing requirements for freight brokers, those who want to work in the field should follow the national-level guidelines for licensing.

This means you must first hold either a high school diploma or a GED and be capable of passing a standard background check.

To start the process you will apply for what is called a broker authority from the Department of Transportation (DOT).

You can apply for this online by submitting the required information and the $300 filing fee.

When you turn in the fee and application materials, they will issue you a unique motor carrier number.

It takes four to six weeks to fully process this application.

While this application is being processed, you can work on getting a surety bond set up.

In order to start your career as a freight broker, you will need to have a $75,000 surety bond in place.

This will help convince clients to do business with you, as the bond insures them against losses.

If you lose the freight, miss the shipping deadline, or otherwise cause an issue, the client can recoup the amount they have lost due to the issue from the bond.

Freight Broker Training Programs

Learning to become a freight broker incorporates not only how to handle freight, but other relevant topics like tracking shipments, handling accounts receivable and payable, and the basics of logistics.

While training for this occupation is available through some South Carolina based community colleges, the classes themselves are held online to make them easily accessible to every student.

For example, Midlands Technical College in South Carolina offers the freight broker training program online.

This program typically takes six months to complete and costs just under $1900.00.

In the class, students learn how to operate a brokerage, the relevant transportation laws that apply, how to deal with carriers and keep good relations with them, and how to financially manage a freight brokerage.

To supplement any training program you take, you can become certified as a transportation broker.

While this is not required to get started in the field, it is a way you can stand out from other new freight brokers and potentially win more contracts in the early days of your business.

The Transportation Intermediaries Association offers this certification exam at a price of $125 per member and $175 for non-members.

The exam is offered in multiple-choice format and has a four-hour time limit.

Salary for a South Carolina Freight Broker

The salary range for a freight broker in South Carolina can be between $31,000 and $35,000 annually.

Annual Salary Range:
Annual Salary by Location:
Location Avg. Annual Salary
Columbia $48,878
Charleston $50,091
North Charleston $50,091
Greenville $50,105
Rock Hill $51,920
Mount Pleasant $50,091
Spartanburg $49,298
Sumter $47,167
Hilton Head Island $49,245
Florence $47,547

Regional Salary in South Carolina

Region Employed Avg. Annual Salary Avg. Hourly Pay Top 10% Annual Salary Bottom 10% Annual Salary
Charleston-North Charleston, SC1,020$48,910$23.51$60,220$37,940
Columbia, SC170$41,970$20.18$60,920$26,000
Florence, SC50$43,300$20.82$78,650$24,910
Greenville-Anderson-Mauldin, SC220$46,980$22.59$62,260$26,730
Myrtle Beach-Conway-North Myrtle Beach, SC-NC70- NA -- NA -- NA -- NA -
Spartanburg, SC150$43,350$20.84$57,460$26,490
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Cargo and Freight Agents, OCC Code 43-5011, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where does a freight broker work in South Carolina?

You can set up business as a freight broker in South Carolina anywhere you like.

Statistics show that Charleston is the busiest city in terms of freight movement, making it a solid choice for a new business owner.

Can you work from home as a freight broker in South Carolina?

Yes, as a new freight broker you can work from home instead of getting an office space.

This helps to keep your startup costs for the business low.

Are people with criminal records able to work as freight brokers in South Carolina?

In order to become a freight broker, you must be able to pass a criminal background check.

This eliminates anyone with a serious criminal record from becoming a South Carolina freight broker.

USA Freight Broker License by State

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