These are the top 25 low-cost franchises to keep an eye out for in 2017.
When exploring franchise opportunities, there are several variables to consider – industry, business model, growth opportunity and cost. A business owner will want to ensure their return on investment will be worth the time and energy they put into it. Fortunately, there are plenty of franchise opportunities that make it easier for a potential investor to pull the trigger by offering a relatively lower initial investment fee.
John Blair, Vice President of Marketing/PR of FranNet, has extensive experience with researching and keeping a close watch on the franchise space.
“Franchise fees are as wide-ranging as there are franchise concepts, but FranNet defines a typical low-cost franchise concept as usually under the $100,000 realm. These low-cost concepts predominantly fall under the service-based, home-based and mobile industries as they typically do not require real estate and equipment fees. This ultimately keeps costs lower, which drives a higher ROI providing an easier hurdle to profitability,” Blair said. “Although cost is a very important factor to consider when exploring business opportunities, it is equally as important to use other criteria as decision makers. By looking at all facets of a brand, the business venture will be more profitable and fulfilling.”
Investment Range: $38K - $218K
Unit Count: 7,217
RE/MAX is the leading name in real estate with more than 97,000 real estate agents in over 95 countries. The global network is composed of skillful real estate agents that help find the right home for their loyal clients. RE/MAX continues to focus on the needs of the agent and ensure they have the tools and support needed to succeed. Ever since the 1970’s, the business has become a brand people know and trust.
Investment Range: $4K - $52K
Unit Count: 8,224 Globally
JAN-PRO offers the highest-quality cleaning techniques and systems available to offices and commercial and health care facilities. The brand has been recognized as the No. 1 ranked global commercial cleaners in Entrepreneur magazine’s 2015 “Franchise 500.” Franchise partners are thoroughly trained and undergo an intensive five-week JAN-PRO brand standards certification program that aligns with OSHA safety. JAN-PRO’s global network of 8,224 units serve more than 35,000 customers in 13 countries.
Investment Range: $2K - $23K
Unit Count: 2,364
Cruise Planners allows a travel agent the flexibility to run their own travel agency business from anywhere. With access to travel fares and special amenities, the brand has increasingly become the nation’s leading home-based travel agent network. Cruise Planners has been ranked one of 2015’s fastest-growing private companies in America on the Inc. 5000 list by Inc. Magazine and No. 1 in their category by Franchise Business Review. The brand currently has 2,364 franchise units across the country.
Investment Range: $3K - $22K
Unit Count: 1,075
As part of World Travel Holdings, CruiseOne/Dream Vacations has become the world’s largest seller of cruise vacations with 1,075 franchise units. The brand continues to excel in providing vacationers access to the world’s most tremendous destinations. As a home-based franchise, CruiseOne/Dream Vacations creates a more affordable business option for entrepreneurs across the country. The brand has recently been named seven in Prestigious 2016 Travel Weekly Magellan Awards.
Investment Range: $32K - $149K
Unit Count: 12,000 company-owned and franchise locations
A global consumer tax services provider, H&R Block has grown to 12,000 company-owned and franchise retail locations across the country and on military bases across the world. With a team of highly trained tax professionals, H&R Block’s clients have prepared more than 680 million tax returns since the 1950’s. With a low-cost investment fee and a proven business system, franchise opportunities continue to appeal to aspiring entrepreneurs nationwide.
Investment Range: $14K - $294K
Unit Count: 1,110
Chester’s has been known to serve “Great Tasting, Fresh Fried Chicken” cooked to perfection since the 1950’s. Today, the brand continues to grow with more than 1,110 franchise units. With a competitive landscape, Chester’s has made a name for itself by providing customer satisfaction and a high-quality product with its secret family recipe. Armed with an affordable equipment package, 50+ years of brand experience, no royalty fees and ongoing operational support, Chester’s creates a one-of-a-kind franchise opportunity for those looking to get into the food and beverage industry.
Investment Range: $5K - $50K
Unit Count: 750
Proforma, the leading network provider of printing and promotional products, services 50,000 clients worldwide with more than 750 member offices. By partnering with an extensive network of manufacturers and suppliers, Proforma builds a resource dedicated to tailor solutions for specific business needs—from branded merchandise, uniforms and apparel, custom packaging, printing services, awards and recognition and more. In its fourth decade of existence, Proforma has grown to a $500 million organization.
Investment Range: $35K - $53K
Unit Count: 650
Devoted to providing a fun and educational atmosphere for children, Bricks 4 Kidz uses an out-of-the-box method to teach the fundamentals of S.T.E.M. With a theory that kids learn best through activities and creativity, Bricks 4 Kidz has become one of the fastest growing franchises with more than 650 units. The brand has been ranked the No. 1 children’s enrichment franchise by Entrepreneur Magazine’s Franchise 500 list in 2015. With a low investment cost, Bricks 4 Kidz continues to provide a safe and relaxed learning environment.
Investment Range: $9K - $38K
Unit Count: 8,000
Jazzercise, the world’s leading dance fitness company, was born in the 1960’s with the mission of transforming one’s body and life in a fun way. Over the past years, Jazzercise Inc. has grown immensely with more than 8,000 franchise owners teaching 32,000 plus classes each week across the country. With an affordable and flexible franchisee fee, individuals are able to change the lives of other others through fitness across the world.
Investment Range: $45K - $78K
Unit Count: 60
For three decades, Showhomes has helped realtors and homeowners sell more than 25,000 residential properties—which amounts to $8.5 billion—by transforming high-end vacant houses into fully-furnished, inviting and valued Showhomes. To help realtors sell homes more efficiently, Showhomes offers services that involve whole-house furnishing, staging and design to showcase the potential of the home. The brand is rapidly expanding its franchise system with nearly 60 offices nationwide, serving customers in 18 states.
Investment Range: $47K - $138K
Unit Count: 600
Rooter-Man has been named No. 1 in the plumbing, sewer, drain and cleaning franchise category by Entrepreneur Magazine for the past nine years. With more than three decades of experience, Rooter-Man currently has nearly 600 locations throughout the country. The brand provides a low cost solution to franchise ownership with a flat rate pricing system, a robust service offering and dedicated operational training and support to all franchise owners in the system.
Investment Range: $34K - $42K
Unit Count: 500
Pillar To Post, the country’s largest and leading home inspection company, provides an affordable franchise opportunity in the home buyer landscape with more than 500 franchise units. The brand has been recognized as the Top Low Cost franchise for the last five years and the “Fastest Growing Franchise” for the past five years by Entrepreneur Magazine. To ensure total comfortability and trust for the home buyer, Pillar To Post conducts home inspections for single family households.
Investment Range: $20K - $119K
Unit Count: 500
Realty Executives International has been providing support to home buyers across the country for more than 50 years. With a roster of skillful and knowledgeable agents and nearly 500 units, home buying and selling has been made simple for Realty Executive International’s clients. Equipped with an affordable initial investment fee and a tremendous customer satisfaction rate, Realty Executives International has been ranked No. 177 amongst all franchise companies by Entrepreneur Magazine’s 2014 Franchise 500 list.
Investment Range: $45K - $65K
Unit Count: 161
The Senior’s Choice, the leading membership organization for independent, non-medical home care service providers, offers an affordable investment fee, comprehensive training, no long-term contracts and a business dedicated to serving others. Franchise owners are given the tools needed to launch and expand their in-home care business to further provide independence and peace of mind to those who require assistance. With more than 15 years of experience and 161 franchise units, The Senior’s Choice Inc. has been consistently ranked “Best of Home Care.”
Investment Range: $57K - $160K
Unit Count: 20
SafeWay Driving, the leading driving instruction school in Texas, has revolutionized the driver’s training industry through its proven curriculum, SafeWay Driving System®. With 20 units, the brand brings more than 40 years of experience of successfully and thoroughly teaching teenagers, adults, seniors and corporate customers how to navigate the roads. With ongoing training and operational support, combined with a low cost franchise investment, SafeWay Driving continues to grow at a rapid rate.
Investment Range: $59K - $72K
Unit Count: 4,000
Liberty Tax Service offers personal income tax service throughout the United States and Canada with more than 4,000 locations. The brand continues to establish its presence as it has been named “Best of the Best” by Entrepreneur Magazine and named a “Top Tax Firm” by Accounting Today this past year. Liberty Tax service understands that franchisees are looking for potential profit, which is why the cost to invest in the franchise is among the lowest in the industry.
Investment Range: $43K - $57K
Unit Count: 370
Sculpture Hospitality assists bar and restaurant owners with its liquor inventory system to make serving more efficient. The unique concept has grown significantly over the past years with currently more than 370 offices in 35 countries working with 50,000 plus hotel, nightclub, bar and restaurant operators. In addition to offering food inventory systems, Sculpture Hospitality also provides draft beer management programs, sales and training products and a low-cost franchise investment fee.
Investment Range: $35K - $149K
Unit Count: 300
Synergy HomeCare offers non-medical in-home care management and service packages to provide the support and assistance needed for seniors across the country. The brand currently has more than 300 units and continues to grow rapidly. When signing an agreement with Synergy HomeCare, franchise owners will get the training resources, marketing, technology and guidance needed to succeed and grow. The in-home care concept has recently been ranked 14th for franchise opportunity overall by Franchise Gator.
Investment Range: $72K - $102K
Unit Count: 70 Territories
With health and fitness consistently on the rise, GYMGUYZ provides the best in home mobile personal training. With a team of trained personal trainers, clients are able to get a full workout delivered to their home, office or any setting of their choice. Unlike conventional gyms, GYMGUYZ is the ideal gym on the go, which makes the initial investment franchise fee appealing for potential business owners. A pioneer in a new category within the fitness industry with 70 territories, GYMGUYZ continues to prosper year after year.
Investment Range: $52K - $330K
Unit Count: 560
As the technology industry continues to advance, Cellairis Franchise Inc. is growing to keep up with the demand. The brand is known for its wide range of modern and sophisticated products, cutting-edge tech accessories and mobile device repair services. With partnership with Walmart®, more than 560 units, a thorough training program, multi-unit opportunities, a decade of experience, and a low up-front investment with affordable franchisee fees and royalties, Cellairis Franchise Inc. provides all the tools to set the franchise owner up for success.
Investment Range: $33K - $79K
Unit Count: 250
U.S. Lawns has made a name for itself as the No. 1 commercial landscape franchise in the county with more than 250 locations. A green and sustainable business, U.S. Lawns is committed to making communities more beautiful with services such as landscape management, fertilization/pest control, weed/prune/mow cleanup, seasonal color and mulch services. Equipped with thorough operational training, a proven success model and a low investment, franchise owners will have a rewarding, green business they can be proud of.
Investment Range $75K - $128K
Unit Count: More than 40
With a twofold mission of building better teachers and building successful students, Best in Class Education Centers’ thoughtful methods and customizable approach have garnered great attention and training in the educational market. The brand has recently been ranked as one of the “Top Low Cost Franchises” by Franchise Business Review and “Top New Franchises” by Entrepreneur Magazine. Best in Class Education Centers focuses on creating a solid educational foundation, promoting creative thinking and offering affordable programs that benefit the students, teachers and community. The brand is quickly growing with more than 30 units open and additional on the horizon in the coming year.
Investment Range: $78K
Unit Count: More than 200 territories
Mosquito Joe is a franchise opportunity with a great promise: Making outside fun again for communities throughout the United States. Mosquito Joe franchise costs are significantly less than most franchises, particularly due to low initial staffing needs and the non-necessity to build out a retail space. Franchise partners receive training and support through powerful marketing campaigns and structured call center operations to help with recruiting customers and maintaining world-class customer service. The brand currently has more than 110 open territories and more than 200 sold.
Investment Range: $87K
Unit Count: 190
With nearly 20 years of experience and more than 190 locations across the Unites States and Canada, The Cleaning Authority offers a wide range of green cleaning services to any home or apartment. Completing more than 1.7 million cleans last year, the company is responsible for the proprietary “Detail-Clean Rotation System” designed to guarantee a thorough clean. The Cleaning Authority is also environmentally responsible—they’re committed to using Green-Seal Certified cleaning products.
Investment Range: $17K - $124K
Unit Count: 350
OpenWorks, the well-known professional commercial cleaning franchise, is committed to providing service to a wide range of facilities nationwide. With 350 franchise units, the brand follows its philosophy that a cleaner and healthier environment means a more productive workplace. Operating in a $150 billion per year industry, OpenWorks focuses not only on cleaning buildings, but also on harnessing professional motivations. With a business model built on helping franchise partners get the most out of their venture, OpenWorks offers a hands-on approach with full service training and continued education and a low-cost initial investment.