How to score a home run, at home; franchises let you work out of your house

How to score a home run, at home; franchises let you work out of your house – Franchising: Personal Picks

Don Wallace

How to Score a Home Run, at Home

Franchises That Let You Work Out of Your House

Two great business trends have blossomed over the course of the last decade. The first, franchising, now accounts for one-third of all retail sales in the United States.

The second business innovation — cheap and user-friendly technology — has also made its mark on the decade, leading to a surge of home-based businesses.

It seems only natural that the two trends would eventually converge, and they have. Today, after years of concentrating on highly visible markets such as food and the automotive aftermarket, franchising has gone indoors. The era of the home-based franchise has arrived.

* In her recent book, Franchises You Can Run From Home, Lynie Arden charts this new landscape. She points out the natural advantages. For instance, the two big negatives of running a business from the home, isolation and lack of management training, are solved by the convenient safety net offered by the parent franchise.

And, compared to the traditional franchise, here’s what the home-based franchise has going for it:

* No overhead;

* Lower start-up costs;

* Faster profits.

If it all sounds irresistible, then you’re getting Arden’s drift.

Now, you may be asking yourself if this is a fad or a trend. Arden argues that home-based franchises are themselves part of a larger movement: the growth of the service sector. As the U.S. economy shifted in the past decades away from its industrial base, services became the mainstay of our society. In addition, says Arden, “More women entered the work force, a larger percentage of the population became older, and time became a precious commodity. Service franchises rose quickly to fill our new needs.”

After her introductory chapters, the rest of Arden’s book is devoted to a listing of over 100 home-based franchises, separated into 10 categories. In addition to providing addresses and phone numbers of franchises, Arden also supplies relevant information such as royalty fees, years in operation, and number of franchisees.

For readers who are interested in working out of the home, she strongly suggests completing a personality and aptitude inventory that she supplies for each category of business.

The 10 categories, with some of the areas they include:

1) Business Services: payroll services, business analysis, advertising distribution, debt collection;

2) Home and Commercial Property Improvement: leak detection, interior decoration, home security, lawn care;

3) Children’s Products and Services: IDENT-A-KID Services, day care;

4) Health and Beauty: cosmetics, first aid, childbirthing;

5) Special Occasion Goods and Services: party ideas, disc jockey services, catering;

6) Publishing: special interest newsletters, information guides, wedding guides;

7) Residential and Commercial Cleaning: carpet cleaning, maid service, chimney sweeping;

8) Real Estate and Financial Services: home inspection, tenant listings, log home sales;

9) Photographic Products and Services: VCR maintenance, video dating, sports photography;

10) Miscellaneous: pet care, beauty pageants, motivational training systems.

* Franchise Opportunities Guide.

The folks over at the International Franchise Association have much good news to report. For instance, there’s a new franchise opening somewhere in the U.S. every 17 minutes. Franchise businesses employed more than eight million people last year and averaged an annual sales growth of 10.4 percent.

You can keep track of all these promising developments through the IFA’s Franchise Opportunities Guide, which lists more than 2,400 franchise companies and, in digest fashion, dishes out information on business type, history, cash investment required, and qualifications needed.

* Calling All Franchisees: Now you can read everything that has ever been written on franchising in SUCCESS magazine! We’ve compiled all the relevant reprints in our Special Interest Package on Franchising, for an unbeatable price of only $4.95.

To order this package, or the titles mentioned above, call 1-800-677-7600.

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