If you’ve ever dreamed of owning a small business but have no clue where to start, you might want to consider a Canadian franchise opportunity. While many of these business opportunities have low initial investment costs, key components must be set in place to ensure you make the most of every penny.
What Investing in a Franchise Means
When you invest in a franchise, you purchase the rights to use a company’s name and trademark from the franchisor (the original business owner). As the franchisee, you’re renting an established business model and brand for a set number of years with agreements on renewal rights.
A popular example of a franchise is McDonald’s. Most McDonald’s restaurants worldwide are franchised, but the product line, marketing, and business mode remain virtually the same across the board.
Preparing to Invest
Assess the field you’re interested in, as well as your personal interests, before beginning your quest. Franchises are heavily regulated, and they also involve set fees that may be ongoing. Canada Business provides online tools to determine which field is your best fit (both financially and personality-wise). Keeping a sharp eye on your books allows a clear look at your assets to make sure you’re prepared financially for the investment.
Find Affordable Franchises
As a newer entrepreneur, you want to select a franchise that offers the most bang for your buck. Four affordable franchises include:
If you love cars, Chipmaster might be an option for you. This company offers chip, scratch, and other small cosmetic repair work on vehicles. Most repairs are done within 30 minutes and net about $200 to $600 in profit. The company requires an initial $20,000 investment, but this sum covers training and equipment, as well as enough paint to do about $60,000 of work. The only items you need to buy are a shop for customers to find you, a compressor, a computer, and software such as QuickBooks Online to help you track orders and payments.
Multi Menu Pet Food
Give pets great nutrition with the Multi Menu Pet Food home delivery service for an initial investment of $4,500. The company offers 18 Canadian Medical Veterinary Association-approved recipes for dogs and cats, litter products, and more than 6,500 accessories. This franchise opportunity gives you territorial rights to up to 15,000 homes, training, and ongoing support. You can also choose whether to work on the business full- or part-time. Multi Menu can be run from home and requires little to no inventory.
Pro Concept Coatings
Durable floors are a must for most homes and offices. Pro Concept Coatings turns regular concrete into beautiful, showcase-worthy flooring. Customers have 10 basic colours, 80 fleck patterns, and more than 100 PPG colours to choose from. A $25,000 investment provides you with $10,000 in equipment, shop materials, and co-op advertising, along with enough product to generate up to $18,000 in revenue. You only have to purchase what you need. QuickBooks is helpful here as well, enabling you to track your inventory and handle invoicing of customers. Plus, the business is easy to learn, and the product stores in dry storage at room temperature.
Scorpion Coatings is a family-owned and operated small business that provides polyurethane-based protective coatings to truck beds, as well as window tint and protective film products. The company offers multiple levels of franchise opportunities. For an initial investment of about $10,000, you can choose the most ambitious plan, which comes with 135 gallons of truck liner, tint for windows, a professional spray gun, prep tools, mixing equipment, and promotional materials to get you started. The company offers full training and support, plus a business plan if you need to secure financing.
Getting the Money for a Franchise
Gone are the times that you had to be wealthy to invest in or open a business. There are a variety of ways to gather capital for franchising costs, including:
The great thing about a franchise is that it already has a history of success, so your chances of a commercial bank approving your loan are often higher. If shaky credit is a problem, consider if an alternative lender, secured loan with collateral, or a merchant cash advance works for you.
The Government of Canada graciously provides an extensive list of financing sources that include government-issued funding for various demographics. Check out the list, see where you fit, and take advantage of incredible opportunities such as loan guarantees, grants, and flexible financing.
Look for Item 10 in a Franchisor’s Disclosure Document (FDD) to discover financing arrangements that the franchisor itself may provide.
Angel investors are typically individuals with large amounts of money to spare who are looking for someone to invest in. They offer funding to help you start your franchise in exchange for equity and/or debt. You can look for networking opportunities to find angel investors, or online resources can help you connect with thousands of them.
Family and Friends
Your family and friends root for your success daily, and they are often happy to help. It’s important to treat them as business partners, with the same professional respect that you show anyone involved in your venture. Put all transactions and agreements in writing, both big and small, to set the trend of organization and clarity.
Keep Track of Every Penny
While running a tight ship is important in every business, it’s especially important when you don’t have a ton of capital to misplace. Thankfully, this is possible with careful bookkeeping. QuickBooks Franchise is designed for efficient processes such as:
- Custom invoice tracking and sending
- Income and expense tracking
- Estimates management
- Profit and sales reports
- Inventory tracking
High-powered accounting software is essential in ensuring that every dollar is accounted for, and with it you’re also able to share your books with an accountant or bookkeeper you bring in to help. This program also cuts costs with a monthly discount on pricing, assists you with migrating data, and gives you advice on what programs best fit your successful business model.
Maintaining a successful venture of your own is easier than ever. Take care of business the modern way with powerful and intuitive software. 4.3 million businesses use QuickBooks. Just starting out? Help your business thrive for free.