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2015 Predictions

Quick-service restaurants continue to dominate the franchising landscape. They make up over 20 percent of Entrepreneur’s 36th annual Franchise 500®.  Yet, three other business sectors combined account for one-third of the companies on the 2014 list. Can one of the following fast-growing sectors overtake quick-service restaurants with the most franchise companies in 2015?

Image from entrepreneur.com

Image from entrepreneur.com

Maintenance Service

Maintenance service franchises account for 12.6 percent of the Franchise 500®. What makes these franchises so popular? For one, they have low start-up costs, most of which are for purchasing tools and supplies. Many maintenance franchises, (especially cleaning ones), can be operated out of the owner’s home. They’re ideal for people who dream of owning a business but have a limited budget on which to operate it. Residential cleaning and restoration services are increasingly popular. So are businesses that offer environmentally friendly solutions for cleaning, pest control and odor elimination.

Image from condorclean.net

Image from condorclean.net

Personal Care

Tied with the maintenance sector at 12.6 percent of the Franchise 500® is the personal care business sector. Fitness franchises have 21 companies on the list while senior-care companies have 23. Fitness studios are becoming more popular than the big-box gyms. Potential franchise owners find their lower costs more attractive than those for the big-box gyms. Start-up costs for one-third of the fitness franchises on the Fortune 500® are less than $100,000.

Image by clubsolutionsmagazine.com

Image from clubsolutionsmagazine.com

The highest ranked senior-care franchises have been around for at least 15 years. However, America’s aging population is motivating entrepreneurs to introduce new products and services in this sector. Home-accessibility equipment and patient advocacy are just two of the developing industries. People looking for a franchise opportunity in an emerging business should look into senior-care possibilities.

carecentraltn.com

Image from carecentraltn.com

Children’s Businesses

Parents love to invest in their children. Everything from preschools to tutoring services to other programs that supplement traditional education are increasing in popularity. That’s why children’s business franchises make up 8.2 percent of the companies on the Fortune 500®. One of the hottest segments in this sector is STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics). Tutoring franchise Mathnasium showed impressive growth in 2014 and made it into the top 100 for the first time.  Another popular franchise is Bricks 4 Kidz, a Lego engineering company that’s one of the youngest companies on the list.

Image by shopthearb.com

Image from shopthearb.com

So is it possible for one of the three fastest growing sectors to overtake quick-service restaurants as king of the franchises?  If any of them can, it might be the personal care sector. Growth has slowed in the maintenance franchise sector due to high-profile lawsuits filed by franchisees, which are exposing some of the industry’s unsavory business practices. Children’s businesses are growing but still trail quick-service restaurants by more than 10 percent. The personal care has a lot of ground to cover to overtake quick-service restaurants, but innovative products and services and a growing need to support the country’s longer living population might give this sector the impetus it needs to become number one.

Next Steps

If you’re considering a franchise investment or just have questions, feel free to contact one of our franchise specialists to learn more about the process and all the different franchise opportunities by completing our request form or calling 1-877-650-5551.

By Annie McGreal

Top 5 Senior Care Franchises

Nursing homes are no longer the only option for seniors who need assistance with basic living needs like cooking, cleaning and taking medication. The in-home senior care industry is booming as more baby boomer parents- and baby boomers themselves- are reaching retirement age. There’s no better time to get started with a senior care franchise, so check out these top five businesses:

Image from entrepreneur.com

Image from entrepreneur.com

Comfort Keepers

Comfort Keepers seeks to “maintain independence and quality of life” for seniors and disabled individuals by providing in-home care like bathing, feeding and mobility assistance as well as companionship, meal preparation and light housekeeping. Steadily rising on Entrepreneur Magazine’s list of top 500 franchises for the past five years, Comfort Keepers is also ranked on the magazine’s list of fastest-growing franchises in the US and Canada. The franchise fee is $45,000 and the total investment ranges from $83,060 to $114,390. A net worth of $300,000 and $75,000 in liquid assets are required. The term of franchise agreement is 10 years with an ongoing royalty fee of five percent. Only two employees are needed to run a single franchised unit, and 100 percent of franchisees are owner/operators.

Image from hireology.com

Image from hireology.com

Home Helpers/Direct Link

Home Helpers offers in-home assistance to seniors, new and expectant mothers, working parents, and recuperating individuals. To serve their mission of “making life easier,” this franchise works with Direct Link, a medical alert and medication management program. The initial fee falls between $44,900 and $50,900. As such, the total investment ranges from $64,500 to $104,900 with an ongoing royalty fee of six percent. Franchisees must have at least $44,500 in liquid cash; however, they can run operations from their own home.

Image from caring.com

Image from caring.com

Home Instead Senior Care

Home Instead Senior Care is dedicated to “enhancing the quality of life for both seniors and their families” through part-time, full-time and live-in elderly assistance. With an initial fee of $45,000, the total investment of opening a franchise varies between $99,020 to $114,910. The term of franchise agreement is 10 years and renewable with an ongoing royalty fee of five percent. Home Instead also requires $45,000 in available liquid cash and 9-12 employees to run a franchised unit.

Image from visitingangels.com

Image from visitingangels.com

Visiting Angels

Visiting Angels creates a personalized plan of in-home, non-medical living assistance services for each senior. Ranked inside the top 100 of Entrepreneur Magazine’s Franchise 500 for five consecutive years, Visiting Angels has expanded throughout the US and Canada and now has international units; however, the franchisor is still seeking to grow both domestically and internationally. The startup cost fluctuates between $37,950 and $60,950; the total investment runs between $65,750 and $100,000 with an ongoing royalty fee of 3.5 to 2 percent. Visiting Angels requires a $100,000 net worth and $40,000 to $50,000 in available liquid assets, but only one employee is needed to run a franchised unit.

Image from prweb.com

Image from prweb.com

Acti-Kare Inc.

Franchising since 2007, Acti-Kare Inc. is a newer non-medical home care service, but it has consistently been ranked on Entrepreneur Magazine’s list of best low cost franchises as well as top 500 franchises. The company provides care to seniors, mothers, children and pets. The initial fee ranges between $24,750 and $39,750; the total investment between $32,600 and $51,550. Acti-Kare requests a three to five percent ongoing royalty fee, a $100,000 net worth and $30,000 in liquid cash. A franchised unit can be run from home but absentee ownership is not allowed.

Next Steps

If you’re considering a franchise investment or just have questions, feel free to contact one of our franchise specialists to learn more about the process and all the different franchise opportunities by completing our request form or calling 1-877-650-5551.

By Erin Cizek