How to Choose and Purchase a Franchise

In these uncertain times, most people are not keen on the idea of starting a business, although many consider working for oneself to be the pinnacle of a professional career. But with banks getting stingy with the loans, the economy sunk in recession, and more people than ever applying for grants (both government and private), you may not think you have a shot at starting your enterprise. However, if you have some experience in a particular industry, you might want to look into purchasing a franchise.

You’ll have to find a company that will complement your knowledge and expertise (that is also in your price range). Still, with an already established brand identity and consumer base attached, it could just provide you with a feasible way to get started on your path to being your boss. Here are a few tips to help you on the road to choosing and purchasing a franchise.

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For starters, you need to consider the many companies that now franchise. Your first thought may be fast-food restaurants like McDonald’s or Taco Bell, but while these are widespread and well-known, they are also costly (you stand to make a lot of money, but you have to spend a lot to get started).

How to Choose and Purchase a Franchise

Plus, not everyone is interested or experienced in the field of foodservice. What you need to consider is the type of work you’ve done so far and how it might translate into franchise ownership. Once you pinpoint the industry you’re interested in, you can start seeking companies that offer franchises.

Is it viable?

From there, you need to think about the viability of such a business in your area. Do their products or services interest you? Just because you have dealt in a specific field doesn’t mean a particular company will appeal to you. Will you have to commute or move to maximize profits, and if so, are you willing to travel for work?

Does the company have a good corporate image that you can stand behind? In other words, do their ideals mesh with yours? What kinds of restrictions do they impose on franchisees?

Do they have a good reputation in the business community? And of course, you need to consider how much they’re charging for the privilege of owning and operating one of their branches, as well as what types of fees you’ll be on the hook for.

Do your research

Looking into franchise opportunities is not going to be easy; there’s a lot of research to be done if you want to find the right fit. But once you have decided on a company, all that remains is to purchase the franchise, and for this, you’re going to want to hire a lawyer.

The company probably has a standard contract in place for all franchise owners, but you’ll almost certainly want to negotiate some of the finer points. After all, you want to make sure that the terms are favorable or at least fair.

And while you will almost certainly have to operate within specific guidelines and standards set forth by the franchisor, you still want to have some control over how your business is run.

Since you are probably not prepared to argue the finer points of franchise law, it behooves you to shell out the cash for a lawyer that can make sure you don’t get into something you’re not prepared for. Read our article on building a profitable Franchising business.