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FranchisingFeature HOME-BASED/HOME SERVICES

Pool Scouts Continues Expansion From Coast to Coast

Mastering the Home-Based Franchise Low Investment, High Margin Businesses

SEPTEMBER 2018


H OME-BASED / HOME SERV ICES FR A NCHSI NG FE AT U RE

what’s new! No-H2O Looking to Bring Business Model and Franchising Opportunities to the United States After finding tremendous success in Europe, No-H2O, which is a waterless solution to car washing that services residential areas, business offices, car dealerships and anywhere where a car can be cleaned, is looking to bring its franchise model to the United States. They are currently looking for aspiring entrepreneurs to come onboard as franchisees. No-H2O uses no water in comparison to a drive through car wash which will waste an incredible of 132 liters of water. The company was founded by former professional race car driver, Emmet O’Brien. Deemed the “Uber of car washing,” No-H2O is the first company to build a bespoke On-Demand in house app for carwashing and detailing and has also proven its innovation in markets in Europe where it has been operating the On-Demand model since 2016. No-H2O has a significant advantage in this market as it has developed this on the back of an already successful business operating in both the carwash & detailing markets but also manufacturing and suppling its range of waterless products globally. No-H2O offers a number of operating franchise models: Mobile franchises using a branded No-H2O special vehicle which franchisees use to provide car cleaning services. The mobile franchisee is granted an exclusive territory to operate their business. For more information, please visit www.noh2o.ie.

Franchising USA

Conserva Irrigation Hits Expansion Milestone After One Year of Franchising Outdoor National Irrigation Company Now Servicing Over 50 Territories Across the Country Conserva Irrigation, the only national outdoor irrigation company founded on the concept of water conservation, celebrated the one-year mark since franchising with the signing of five new franchise agreements and three expansion contracts, tallying up to 52 territories nationwide. Joining the existing list of markets is Northwest Louisiana, Chattanooga, TN, Central New Jersey, Ann Arbor, MI, North Dallas, TX, Chicago, IL, Tampa and St. Petersburg, FL and South Oklahoma City. Conserva Irrigation was founded in 2010 by Russ Jundt, who became disturbed by the tremendous amount of water wasted by the typical irrigation system. As a solution to this problem, Jundt developed a proprietary process to audit irrigation systems called the “System Efficiency Score” to rate the water efficiency of a system based on a numerical scale and conserve water. This systemized approach allows homeowners to understand how much water their sprinkler systems are wasting as well as what improvements to make in order to reduce water consumption and lower water bills. The company’s commitment to reducing water waste and creating impactful results in the industry was recently recognized by The Irrigation Association. Conserva was awarded the prestigious 2018 Vanguard Award for its sustainability project with Target Corporation across more than 320 stores, which saved the retailer over 36 million gallons of water. For more information about franchise opportunities with Conserva Irrigation, visit www.conservairrigation.com/ franchising.


One Way Property Restoration Announces National Franchise Opportunities Within the Specialty-Cleaning and Restoration Services Industry One Way Property Restoration is proud to announce franchise opportunities for aspiring entrepreneurs and restoration experts – allowing you to grow your share of a $4.7 billion industry. One Way offers full service carpet cleaning and restoration services - your one-stop shop for all your carpet solutions. They are more than just a carpet cleaner. When you order a One Way truck to service your community, it comes loaded with all the skills, proprietary products and tons of our specialized services. Their people are always striving to provide a wonderful experience, all with a smile. They get your homes clean fresh and rentready quickly.

One Way franchise business owners are backed by their 25 plus years of experience in the specialty-cleaning and restoration services industry and with a powerful franchise system that includes a highly recognizable brand image, compelling marketing style, unique patented multiple revenue sources, plus an outstanding support system that helps our franchise partners become highly successful. One Way is an attractive investment

opportunity – as franchisees earn in excess of $600k in revenue per location. Their services include: carpet cleaning, proprietary station removal, water damage extraction, color restore, total odor control, urine decontamination, carpet repairs, air duct/dryer vent cleaning, hard surface cleaning, pressure cleaning and common area carpet maintenance program. For more information, visit onewayclean.com/franchise.

Parent Company of HouseMaster Launches PatchMaster, a New Drywall Repair Franchise With nearly four decades of success in home services as HouseMaster Home Inspections, Master Home Services now looks to conquer a niche in the small drywall repair market with its new brand PatchMaster. PatchMaster offers customers a fast, professional solution for drywall repairs. Most busy handymen, large drywall companies or contractors don’t want to perform small drywall repairs. Service professionals like plumbers and electricians often don’t have the resources to fix holes they leave behind. Currently, PatchMaster has more than 19 franchises signed in 46 territories with 10 franchises opened and operating. The franchise has growth opportunities across Canada and the United States, targeting states like California, Arizona, Florida and North Carolina. PatchMaster is set to open its first location in Hawaii later this summer. The initial franchise fee for a PatchMaster franchise territory, which consists of a population up to 250,000, is $19,500. Ongoing fees include a technology fee and a downward sliding scale for royalties starting at 9 percent. Franchisees attend a week-long training program at the company’s headquarters in New Jersey.

The opportunity is a great fit for executives and professionals

seeking to invest in the home services industry, as PatchMaster is easy to ramp up and still a very low investment. No drywall experience is required for owners – PatchMaster provides all

the training, tools and resources to learn the model and run the business.

For more information, visit PatchMaster.com.

Franchising USA

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what’s new!

Inc. Magazine Recognizes Mosquito Squad as One of America’s Fastest Growing Private Companies for the Eighth Year in a Row

Mosquito Squad, the largest and most trusted mosquito and tick control franchise in North America, landed on Inc. magazine’s list of the fastest growing companies in America for the eighth consecutive year. Mosquito Squad is among two percent of Inc. 5000 companies having earned eight appearances on the list, further establishing its position as the clear leader in the industry, as the company continues to experience ongoing growth and success. Throughout the year, Mosquito Squad launched services in international markets, including Kenya and Indonesia, giving its team first-hand access to communities that

have been seriously impacted by insectborne illnesses. This expansion is one of many company efforts to strengthen the brand’s commitment to not only provide protection, but also help consumers stay informed about how to protect themselves and their families from the dangers of insect-borne diseases. By providing practical information about how to reduce local mosquito breeding grounds and consistently delivering exceptional services to clients, Mosquito Squad has earned the trust of consumers and continues to experience rapid growth as a result.

and ticks from outdoor living spaces so homeowners can enjoy their yards, and outdoor living and dining spaces.

Founded in 2005, Mosquito Squad specializes in eliminating mosquitoes

For more information, visit MosquitoSquadFranchise.com.

DreamMaker Bath & Kitchen Named by REMODELING Magazine to its 2018 REMODELING 550 List of America’s Biggest Remodelers DreamMaker Bath & Kitchen ranked 6th on the 2018 REMODELING 550 list of the nation’s biggest full-service remodelers by revenue, the company announced today. The REMODELING 550 brings together the nation’s 550 biggest full-service remodelers, replacement contractor / home improvement firms, insurance restoration firms, and franchisors. Because the full-

service and replacement firms operate so differently, the REMODELING 550 lists and ranks them separately. “We are honored to receive this distinction,” said DreamMaker President and CSO Doug Dwyer. “There are roughly 100,000 remodeling firms in this country with payrolls, so it’s great to know that we’re among the top 0.5% in the nation.” REMODELING editor-in-chief Craig

Webb noted there’s a high turnover rate in remodeling, with roughly one-sixth of the firms going out of business annually. “In contrast, the bigger firms have a failure rate of less than 2%,” he said. “Thus, to become a REMODELING 550 company indicates that you have quality and staying power—two traits that customers value most.” REMODELING, published by Hanley Wood, is a leading publication in the home improvement industry. REMODELING has and continues to be ta resource that remodelers depend on for industry insights—delivering the business knowhow, product and technical information that home improvement pros need to help make smart decisions that will shape their success. For more information, please visit dreammakerfranchise.com.

Franchising USA


HFC’s Shirin Behzadi Wins Entrepreneur of the Year® Orange County Award Shirin Behzadi, CEO of Home Franchise Concepts (HFC), the largest family of direct-to-consumer brands in the home improvement space, has received the Entrepreneur Of The Year® 2018 Award in the Direct to Consumer category in Orange County. Considered the world’s most prestigious business honor for entrepreneurs, the Entrepreneur Of The Year Award recognizes inspirational business leaders excelling in innovation, financial performance and personal commitment to their businesses and communities. Behzadi was selected after completing a series of in-person interviews evaluated by an independent panel of judges. HFC is the franchisor of the Budget Blinds, Tailored Living and Concrete Craft brands, supported by more than 1,400 franchise territories operating in 10,000 cities in the U.S., Canada and Mexico

The award comes during a season of professional recognition for Behzadi including nomination to the Orange County Business Journal “OCBJ 500,” selection as a presenter at the Franchise Times Finance and Growth Conference and the subject of a May 2018 cover profile in Franchise Times magazine. Under Behzadi’s direction, HFC is on track to reach $700 million in sales in 2018, up from $600 million last year and a 71-percent increase in systemwide sales since 2015. Behzadi relocated the company in May to new offices in Irvine, Calif., with double the space for interactive product displays and training, education and support facilities for the company’s growing base of franchisees and employees. For more information, visit homefranchiseconcepts.com.

Assisted Living Locators Partners with Paragon Home Resources to Provide Senior Clients with Home Transition Services Assisted Living Locators, a nationwide senior care referral and placement agency, announced today it is partnering with Paragon Home Resources to provide families with valuable home transition services, including relocating loved ones, real estate sales, moving assistance, and sorting and pairing down belongings, if appropriate.

throughout the U.S. that help seniors and their families locate assisted living facilities that meet their unique geographic, financial, emotional, and care needs. The company has been matching seniors with caring providers for more than a decade. www.assistedlivinglocators.com

According to Angela Olea RN CEO, Assisted Living Locators is the first U.S. senior care referral and placement agency to add this comprehensive senior care transition solution to its services. “The challenge families with aging parents face today is finding a single source for reliable assistance with this life decision, ranging from navigating care options to the logistical details of the loved one’s move,” she explained. “Our partnership with real estate industry leader Paragon Home Resources, allows our counselors to give greater care to the senior and their family. Our broad portfolio of coordinated services will set a new standard for senior care transition in the industry.” A top performing franchise organization, Assisted Living Locators offers eldercare placement and referral franchises

Franchising USA

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COVER STORY: Pool Scouts

Pool Scouts Continues Coast to Coast Expansion Pool Scouts is a franchise that works to ensure all their customers spend more time enjoying their pool, not worrying about cleaning it. Franchising USA

Since Pool Scouts began franchising in 2016, they have successfully expanded in 39 territories within nine states, and they plan on continuing this expansion in locations around the country. Franchising USA sat down with Michael Wagner, President of Pool Scouts, to discuss what makes the company stand out from the competition.

What makes Pool Scouts an attractive franchise opportunity? “Great question, the franchise is designed to be operated from home, so there are no massive site costs or rent to consider,” Michael Wagner explains. “It is an extremely manageable business model from the outset, initially only requiring two key roles to operate successfully. The first role is what we call the office manager, who is responsible for taking calls, scheduling jobs, ordering supplies, managing local marketing and other such administrative duties. The second role is that of the technician, they work out the in field at people’s homes.” Pool Scouts consider their vehicles as their real estate, making them a great franchise choice if you’re looking for flexibility or a business that can work around your life and family. “Pool Scouts is the second brand launched for Buzz Franchise Brands,” Michael Wagner says, “meaning Pool Scouts is part of an organisation with a strong leadership team with a tremendous amount of franchising experience.” This


support and expertise is supported by Pool Scouts’ marketing approach, which works to build the Pool Scouts brand to assist local franchisees in presenting a known and trusted brand to their customers. “We work on behalf of our franchisees to build a targeted marketing approach to branding, develop all of the digital side of things, direct mail, websites and reputation management,” Michael Wagner explains, “so we do a lot of things that really help them on the marketing side to acquire customers but build their brand locally in order to set them up in their communities.”

What sort of training and support do you offer Pool Scouts franchisees? “The training program is nine days of face-to-face training at the corporate office in Virginia Beach. This is a great opportunity to meet and get to know the Pool Scouts leadership team. Prior to coming to head office, we provide two to three days of online training. Then, based on the tenor of the franchisee, there are different certification levels that we offer. These levels depend on how long the franchisee has been with the company and state regulations associated with repair work.” Pool Scouts train their franchisees to develop and maintain regular customers on a recurring basis, giving their franchisees a steady, reliable income and the ability to build relationships with customers in their community. “We have a field support coach who spends a lot of time out with our franchisees and is also available by phone or Facetime.” This ongoing support is available to every Pool Scouts franchisee. “Additional to ongoing training benefits, this is also a great way for us to look at what is going on with our franchisees and customers and pass on suggestions so they can improve and develop accordingly.” Pool Scouts offers business training and technical training, teaching their franchisees how to run the business operations as well as about pool maintenance and equipment. This means that as a Pool Scouts franchisee, you will

have a thorough understanding of every aspect of the business and the skills to manage it successfully.

What sort of person is your perfect franchisee fit? “At Pool Scouts, we have coined the term ‘PHD’s’ to describe what we are looking for in a potential franchisee – Passionate, Hungry and Driven.” Michael Wagner goes on to explain that of all the franchisees they currently have working in their system, only one has a background working in the pool industry. “Just like the franchisor, we are looking for people who are hard working, motivated and can work within an established system.” So far, all of Pool Scouts’ franchisees are owneroperators, with many working as the office manager and hiring in technicians to go and tend to the jobs. The benefit of a Pool Scouts franchise is this flexibility, and the ability to rely in a tired and tested system with support mechanisms in place. “We teach that at the core, our franchisees need to have that passion, hunger and drive in order to effectively work with the Pool Scouts leadership team to see their franchise succeed,” said Michael Wagner.

Where are your current territories, and where are you hoping to expand? “We are in New York, New Jersey, North Carolina, South Carolina, Memphis, Tennessee, Florida and Texas, with our corporate office in Virginia Beach.” Michael Wagner goes on to explain that Pool Scouts successfully operates in both seasonal and non-seasonal markets. “We find that the best locations for successful Pool Scouts franchises are areas which have a high concentration of residential pool owners in a tight area,” Michael Wagner explains, “so that would incorporate metropolitan cities, certainly in the North East. Right now, we have a particular focus on Charlotte and Atlanta. We know these are excellent territories for our business. The whole states of Texas, Florida, California, Arizona and New York are ideal. They are what we call the ‘Big Five,’ which are the five biggest

“We’re truly building a nationwide service brand... We really want to focus on the service side of the pool industry and will continue to build relationships and long-standing customer commitment.” - Michael Wagner pool states. The fact that we are not yet in California and Arizona make them very attractive states for us in terms of explosion opportunities.”

What success do you see for Pool Scouts in 2019 and the coming years? “Pool Scouts is the primary brand of Buzz Franchise Brands, putting the company and our franchisees in a great position,” Michael Wagner explains. “We have a big focus on Pool Scouts and our expansion capabilities, and we are hoping to double the number of franchisees in the next year.” Pool Scouts has an impressive pipeline, and Michael and the leadership team are motivated and determined at see the franchise system go from coast to coast. “We’re truly building a nationwide service brand. One of the great things about Pool Scouts is that we know what we want to do, we don’t want to try and do everything - we really want to focus on the service side of the pool industry and will continue to build relationships and long-standing customer commitment. I can see 500 very strong territories for our business, and I definably see us capturing good market share.” Michael Wagner advises any aspiring franchisees to focus on their passion and drive. There are many great benefits to working within an established system such as Pool Scouts, and their ever-growing brand awareness will continue to help Pool Scouts franchisees build a bright future. poolscoutsfranchise.com

Franchising USA

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Featu re

b y D i a n a C i ke s Fr a n c h i s i n g U S A

HOME-BASED & HOME SERVICES FEATURE

Franchising USA


Running your own business from home might sound like a dream that’s too good to be true, but it’s becoming a tangible reality for a growing number of homebased business owners. Home-based businesses have been very successful in franchising and have opened up the opportunity for business ownership to a wider variety of investors because without the need for outside real estate, homebased franchises tend to have low start up costs – few cost more than $50,000 to start and many cost as little as $20,000.

The alarm clock goes off, signalling the start of your day. You jump in the shower, get dressed and help the kids get ready for school. Brewing up a fresh pot of coffee, you forgo the travel cup for your favorite ceramic mug and make the trek over to the office – which happens to be less than a minute away and conveniently located in the next room.

In addition to low start-up and overhead costs, as a home-based business owner you also have more control over your schedule which can help maintain a better work/life balance. And aside from times you might need to travel to meetings or events, the only commute you’ll be doing is through the house to your home office. The Small Business Administration reports that around 50 percent of small businesses in the U.S. are currently homebased firms and that number is expected to keep growing. So if a home-based business is part of your vision, you’re not alone and there are many positive statistics and trends showing home-based business as a category set up for big successes.

The evolving concept of “workplace” The concept of “workplace” has evolved and continues to open up new opportunities for home-based businesses. In fact, workplace surveys have shown that we’re at a point where only 32 percent of employees spend all of their time at work in a traditional office, and 43 per cent of workers say the option to work remotely is a “must-have” for today’s workers.

“The world is connected globally through technology and it’s now possible to run a successful business while snuggled warmly on the couch.”

This growing trend means that having a traditional “office” or storefront is less important than ever before, and you can now successfully run a business right out of your own home as long as you have a strong website, a solid social media presence and other key online assets in place.

Franchising USA

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Featu re

b y D i a n a C i ke s Fr a n c h i s i n g U S A

“Some of the fastest growing segments of home services include mosquito spraying, home inspection, home restoration, painting services and deck building.”

The rise of AI technologies and e-commerce With the help of technology, there are more ways than ever to get the word out about your business and stay in touch with customers. Home-based businesses can also be more productive than ever before thanks to the rise of artificial intelligence (AI)-based marketing tools and many experts predict that AI-driven CRM (customer relationship management) platforms, social media tools and other software operations will become available to more and more small business owners. These new technologies will make it possible for home-based businesses to offer the same kinds of efficient, personalized customer service experiences that until now only larger companies have been able to deliver. The rise in e-commerce platforms and decline of brick-and-mortar retail stores has also created more opportunities that ever for home-based business owners to create an online marketplace and sell products from home. The rise of e-commerce means you no longer need to invest in renting commercial real estate, and you don’t have to rely on your own local community to find a market for your products — you can now sell to customers all over the world. According to the U.S. Census, home-based work is most likely to be management, business or financial. However, the homebased home services industry is rapidly growing and with the explosion in online and mobile booking services, it’s now an estimated $400 billion market.

Growth trends While no business is free of risks, having an understanding of current and forecasted trends can help you gain a big step in the direction of long-term franchise success. The home services industry has been steadily growing and this growth is expected to continue beyond 2018. The home services industry is generally made up of businesses whose main purpose is working on residential homes although some of them will also provide services to commercial businesses. Examples include plumbing, flooring, landscaping, HVAC, moving and storage services, and more.

Franchising USA


to avoid disturbing you during your office hours and whenever you’re in your office space. As mentioned earlier, emerging AI technologies carry a lot of potential for helping home-based business owners minimize the challenges of working from home. Once AI robots become commercially available on a wider scale, it’s expected that business owners will be able to delegate certain business functions to robotic “assistants”, including managing business social media accounts, updating websites, marketing and advertising, screening calls and emails, data entry and even generating invoices.

“There is a huge amount of variety in the types of services that can be provided and businesses that provide cleaning services, senior care, tutoring, and computer repair are also showing very promising growth trends in franchising.”

But until “employing” robots becomes the norm for the average business owner, you can still look for ways to accomplish the above tasks more efficiently through automation, delegation or outsourcing.

Living the laptop lifestyle More and more people are transitioning out of the office to a home-based business that can be run from a laptop. The world is connected globally through technology and it’s now possible to run a successful business while snuggled warmly on the couch. But the rise in popularity of home-based businesses also means the level of competition is high, and getting a new business off and running can be a challenging task when faced with it alone.

Some of the fastest growing segments of home services include mosquito spraying, home inspection, home restoration, painting services and deck building. There is a huge amount of variety in the types of services that can be provided and businesses that provide cleaning services, senior care, tutoring, and computer repair are also showing very promising growth trends in franchising.

Minimizing home-based challenges While most business owner struggle with time management and work-life balance

regardless of whether they work from their kitchen table or a corner office, this can be a key challenge for home-based business owners. Being closer to children and family is one of the most common reasons that small business owners choose to start a home-based business, but it also happens to be one of the biggest distractions. If you’re looking to run a successful homebased business, you’ll need to get serious and set yourself up with a professional, functional office space and establish set office hours that are dedicated to running your business. You can then educate your family or anyone who you might live with

With a home-based franchise, you benefit from an already proven concept and a clear system that you can follow. You also gain the benefit of an established brand name and reputation, and most well established franchises will provide you with full training and support. But regardless of the level of support you might receive, to succeed as a homebased business owner, you’ll need to be self-motivated, passionate, and become familiar with the many digital tools that are now available to make life a bit easier for the home-based business owner. ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Diana Cikes is the

Managing Editor at CGB Publishing. She is also

a professional writer/editor and brand storyteller and is happily living the laptop lifestyle as the

owner of a home-based business, DC Creative.

Franchising USA

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Expert Advice: Christopher Conner, President of Franchise Marketing Systems

Low Investment, High Margin Businesses Make Great Franchises In interviewing a potential franchise buyer for a home staging franchise we work with, the question arose from the buyer, how can you tell me that buying “air” for a $40,000 franchise fee makes sense? The home staging franchise had great validation with a strong corporate location, years in business and the first franchise location would be literally next to the corporate operation. In my years in franchising, these attributes all lend themselves to what would typically be considered a very strong franchise opportunity. The question wasn’t much of a surprise as I’ve heard it before, even from the business owners themselves when considering whether to franchise their business, will people really buy this franchise even though we don’t have a fixed location with signage? The answer is a resounding yes if you look at the market at large and what franchise brands are selling consistently: Mosquito Spraying, Home Inspection, Home Restoration, Painting Services, Shoe Shining, Deck Building and Process Serving are just some samples of markets that have franchised with incredible efficiency and shown how powerful a home-based business can be for both the franchisor and the franchisee.

Franchising USA


Chris Conner

Buying “Air” Yes, it is true that there may not be as much of a tangible building or set of equipment that you could touch with a traditional fixed location franchise such as a restaurant or a retail business, but that feel good sensation of being able to touch your business comes with a heavy cost and significant risk. My response to this particular franchise candidate when questioning the value of the air being purchased was to first explain how franchising typically worked in most transactions. There is always “air” being purchased, even when there is a fixed location being opened. A McDonald’s restaurant comes with a $45k franchise fee which pays for intellectual property, training, support, guidance and branding, the equipment, restaurant, build out and tangible items are a $1mil to $2mil investment outside of that franchise fee. So in this example, the value of the air really has nothing to do with how tangible the business assets are, the value of the franchise needs to be evaluated based on franchise value itself, not the assets that are required to operate.

TrueServe, a process serving franchise allows franchisees the opportunity to get into the lucrative and repeatable process serving market from a home office and presents some of the best, high margin business in franchising I’ve seen. Enviromerica offers compliance training for OSHA and other workplace needs and has created a system which offers franchisees a fully functioning, cloud based platform and the potential to build an incredible business from your guest bedroom. MasterPiece Decks delivers similar financial capacity from a home office scenario. These home-based franchises do not require the heavy debt load and capital burden of restaurants, retail or other highcapital franchises and therefore are some of the most attractive franchises on the market.

Business without the Ball and Chain

Franchise Marketing Systems That Drive Business

Home-based businesses have been remarkably successful in franchising in large part because it has opened up the opportunity for business ownership to a large pool of potential investors who until recently didn’t have many options. Today, there are countless franchise opportunities one can invest in with less than $150,000 and have money left over for working capital.

The critical component to what I have seen makes these home-based franchises not only viable, but also scalable on a large degree is the ability to drive business throughout the entire system. The good home-based franchises have incredible marketing systems that can be leveraged, implemented and executed in different markets and by people of different skill sets.

“Today, there are countless franchise opportunities one can invest in with less than $150,000 and have money left over for working capital.” A strong franchise marketing system integrates local marketing, regional, cooperative and national advertising funds to create a symbiotic relationship between franchisor and franchisee and show measurable top line results for the franchise owners. I am a big proponent for home-based franchises, but first you need to identify which brands have their marketing system defined. Christopher Conner is the President of Franchise Marketing Systems and has spent the last decade in the franchise industry working with several hundred different franchise systems in management, franchise sales and franchise development work. His experience ranges across all fields of franchise expertise with a focus in franchise marketing and franchise sales but includes work in franchise strategic planning, franchise research and franchise operations consulting. www.fmsfranchise.com

Franchising USA

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Expert Advice: Peter Hans, President, Discovery Map International

Mastering the Home-Based Franchise

Many potential franchise owners want to leave the corporate world to be their own boss and control their own destiny. If that destiny is a desire to spend more time with family you should consider a home-based franchise opportunity that allows you to fit your career to your lifestyle. Franchising USA

Why? Running a franchise is hard work, particularly if your business requires you to be at a brick-and-mortar location. You may have the best of intentions in getting your franchise off the ground and eventually hiring a manager, however, that might not happen right away—it might not happen at all. And that could mean a lot of time away from home; maybe even more than when you were in the corporate world. On the other hand, with a home-based franchise you will spend more time at home close to the ones that mean the most. That’s the good news, however, keep in mind you must make the proper adjustments to successfully work from home and stay productive.

First, you must recognize being at home can present distractions and challenges to getting your work done. The first step in addressing this hurdle is to devote a room—not an area of a communal room—to your business. Preferably, this room will have a door you can close. Even with a door, a little chat with your family or house-mates may be required to establish boundaries regarding your office and your time during business hours. It doesn’t need to involve “DO NOT ENTER” signs. Just simple guidelines like: “If the door is open, knock first before entering. If it’s closed, do not disturb.” Time management lies as the biggest challenge for a home-based franchise owner. Much of that schedule depends on


“Many solo franchise owners hire virtual assistants or outsource their bookkeeping, accounting or social media marketing work. As you grow your business, you will want to continue to look for ways to outsource tasks that are taking time away from growing even further.” the nature of the franchise. For example, our franchise publishes tourist maps. So, our franchisees spend time selling, working with advertisers on their ads, and coordinating with our graphic designers on publishing the map. Additionally, there are administrative tasks associated with any business—invoicing, paying bills, etc. Most of our franchise owners tailor their schedule to their lives both on a daily and seasonal basis. There’s a selling season, where owners are looking to attract new business and re-sign current advertisers for an upcoming edition. Then there’s a production season, which might not be as demanding, and finally, map distribution. During the selling season, a franchise owner might set up sales calls around their children’s school schedule—9 am to 3pm. Somebody with different lifestyle demands might schedule two or three mornings a week for sales calls. Mornings the rest of the week could be spent on follow up and administrative tasks. While everybody’s schedule might be different, the important thing is to have one and maintain the discipline to stick to it. There are several franchise opportunities for “solopreneurs”. Eventually, you might want to outsource administrative duties to better focus on building your business. Many solo franchise owners hire virtual assistants or outsource their bookkeeping, accounting or social media marketing work. As you grow your business, you will want to continue to look for ways to outsource tasks that are taking time away from growing even further.

Supervising your outsourced help will also involve additional time management. You will want to work with people who don’t require much oversight so that outsourcing becomes much less work than doing it yourself. One of the great things about a franchise opportunity is that you have a system to follow and you can learn from fellow franchise owners. Most franchisors offer training, which often provides the opportunity to meet and learn from fellow franchise owners. For a home-based entrepreneur, this type of interaction is priceless and can help you glean time management skills and secrets to running your business from people who have more experience. Another key is keeping an open line of communication with your franchisor. Ask questions and seek help when you need it; they should know the business better than anyone and after all, they should want, and be organized for your success.

for home to become totally associated with work. There’s an old expression that if you do what you love, you will never work a day in your life. With a successful home-based business, you can create a new saying: Do what you love in a place that you love, and you have found the key to happiness. Peter Hans has served as the president of Discovery Map International since 2005. In 2017, Hans became a partner in Discovery POI, a franchisor of map locations across Slovenia and into neighboring countries across Europe. His background is in finance having worked as an investment banker in New York, London and Zurich for 20 years. Mr. Hans holds an MBA from Babson College and an undergraduate degree from St. Michael’s College (VT). www.discoverymapfranchise.com

Being a franchise owner can be all consuming. Your initial energy and enthusiasm carries you for a while, but you will need to budget some time off. This might be easier said than done but burnout is a real thing if you don’t periodically take time off. Fortunately, with the franchise model, you have a roadmap. Ask your fellow franchise owners how they balance work and time off. You never want to lose sight of why you wanted a home-based franchise in the first place. The very last thing you want is

Peter Hans

Franchising USA

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Expert Advice: Rick Bisio, Franchise Coach, FranChoice

Home-Based Business Are Cheap, But No Sure Thing:

Skills You Must Possess to Be a Successful Home-Based Owner But before you have visions of going downstairs to start your workday at 10:00 a.m. and wearing sweats each day, there are several things you must know about operating a home-based business and what you will need to be successful. According to the SBA, about half of the small businesses in the United States operate primarily from one’s home. There are many different franchises that are home-based as well, in industries such as commercial cleaning, painting, landscaping and extermination services. For these businesses, owners operate from home because there is no need for a physical office building. They bring their products or services to the customer. Rick Bisio

There are a lot of things to like about owning a home-based business. You can be your own boss, and as the name suggests, you operate from home without having to make a daily commute into an office like so many other working Americans must do each day. Franchising USA

When exploring franchise opportunities and conducting their due diligence, one of the first things people notice about a home-based business is they are considerably less expensive than other options. For obvious reasons, brick-andmortar franchises are typically the most expensive type of franchises and will often cost at least $200,000. The primary reason for this is the cost of building out a location and making it appealing to the customer in its design, appearance and atmosphere. That takes significant time and expense. Most home-based businesses cost less than $150,000, with many of them being under $100,000. That is due to a lack of expenses to establish and run the business.

Owners will need to create an office at home, equip themselves with a computer and phone, and purchase supplies, storage and shelves. Depending on their field, they may need a vehicle. Other than that, there are not many more costs involved, and it can be far less expensive than a brick-andmortar franchise. In addition to the low startup costs, there are fewer operating expenses for a home business. You don’t need to pay rent on a building and there may be very few, if any, employees. As a result, it is also possible to open a home-based business in a relatively short amount of time. With less fixed costs and the ability to quickly establish the operation, there is often an earlier opportunity for cash flow and a break-even point for the business. For these reasons, it is easy to see why starting a home-based business is an appealing option for people who do not have much capital to invest in a franchise or are very conservative about how they want to spend their money. With all the built-in advantages to operating a home-based business, some may wonder why people continue to purchase more expensive brick-and-mortar franchises. However, there are some unique challenges that come with owning and operating a home-based business that other franchise owners do not face. Many people find it difficult to work from home because of the distractions that


are constantly present. It is not easy to separate home and work while under one roof, whether it be the physical layout of having your kitchen or family room steps away from your office or knowing you can take a quick break to tend to household chores in the middle of the workday. Distractions can multiply if you have children in the house. You need to have the support of your family because if others are constantly coming into your office at home and making requests of you, you will not be able to fully dedicate yourself to the business. To effectively operate a business from home, one must have the discipline to eliminate these distractions and focus on the job. While the intentions of sneaking into the office at 10:00 each night to get some work done may be good, its consequences could be counterproductive. Many people recommend separating our business and personal lives to create the proper work/life balance. Having strong time management skills are essential when mixing one’s personal and professional responsibilities under one location.

Home-based business encounter certain limitations that brick-and-mortar businesses do not face. Sometimes customers may not take your business seriously if you do not have an office. You may want to consider renting space in a shared office setting to solve this issue and eliminate the problem of distractions at home. Generally speaking, homebased businesses have a hard time with re-salability. They can be re-sold, but buyers are far more comfortable and will pay more money for a business with a physical infrastructure in place than for even a successfully-run business run out of a home. Perhaps the biggest challenge facing a home-based business comes in scalability. Simply put, it is hard to grow a business while operating it from a house. I am aware of several well-known franchises in which some franchisees work from home, and they have fewer sales than others in the system who operate out of physical locations. There are many successful home-based operations, but in order to increase the customer base and grow the

“Owning a business from home represents a lower floor for entry, but also signals a lower ceiling in terms of future growth for the business.” business, you will need to take it outside the home. There are many attractive qualities to owning a home-based business, from lower costs and expenses to being able to quickly start the operation and make money. Owning a business from home represents a lower floor for entry, but also signals a lower ceiling in terms of future growth for the business. Rick Bisio is a leading franchise coach with FranChoice, the creator of the FDD Exchange and the Franchise Glossary and the co-host of Rick Bisio’s Franchise Focus. www.afranchisecoach.com

Franchising USA

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Profile for CGB Publishing

Home Based/Home Services Franchising  

Home Based /Home services franchising from the publishers of Franchising USA, a monthly consumer publication bringing you all the latest new...

Home Based/Home Services Franchising  

Home Based /Home services franchising from the publishers of Franchising USA, a monthly consumer publication bringing you all the latest new...