17 Franchises to Buy for $20,000 or Less

Most people want to become business owners, but it can be overwhelming doing everything from scratch. Owning a business outright means that you’re responsible for all tasks – from marketing to hiring staff. Some people view franchising as a way to enjoy the best of both worlds, to own a business but with support from a proven business model.

Some franchises can be very costly. However, there are some low-cost franchises available to those who can’t afford to fork out a large amount of capital. However, a low startup cost doesn’t automatically mean low profits. With the right support and hard work, these low cost franchises can become some of the most profitable franchises around.

Below are 17 franchises to for $20,000 or less. Although low cost, you may still need significant funds to maintain a franchise until it generates revenue and then a profit.

Different types of finance capital are required.

  • The first is the franchise fee, the one-time upfront amount you pay to the franchisor.
  • Next, comes the initial investment. This covers things like labor, inventory, and resources that will be required to actually launch the business.
  • Third, is the ongoing investment or what will be required to operate the franchise on a day-to-day basis.
  • Fourth, you need personal finances.

Some franchisors want their owners to have a minimum net worth before they are eligible to buy a franchise while others have liquidity requirements.

Here are 17 franchises you can buy for $20,000 or less.

1. Stratus Building Solutions

Stratus Building Solutions focuses on using environmentally-friendly policies, techniques and products for commercial janitorial buildings – like restaurants, shopping malls and offices. The franchise was founded in 2006 and has been growing ever since.

As a potential franchisee, you can invest under $20,000 all the way up to $100,000. If you want to start with a higher investment, this franchise provides finances in-house to help you to raise the initial franchise fee for inventory, equipment, hiring and other startup costs.

2. Floor Hero

This company has a minimum investment of $499. The franchise provides franchisees with the equipment and processes needed to maintain different types of concrete floors and wood. Their coating provides a unique opportunity to make the most of a trend, which is to renovate aging or damaged wood or concrete floors, which could mean that this becomes one of the most profitable franchises. If you become a Floor Hero franchisee, they will provide full training. Other benefits of becoming a Floor Hero franchisee include:

  • No royalties payable.
  • Protected territory.
  • Full support staff.

3. Amazing Athletes

Amazing Athletes is a franchise that provides health and sports classes for children from the age of two and a half years to six years old. They can be found in 28 states and already have more than 100 franchises. This franchise has a total startup investment of just over $20,000. However, the cash requirement to start is under $20,000. The overhead will remain low because this is a mobile franchise, so you do not have to find funds to lease or buy a storefront.

Here are some of the benefits of owning this franchise:

  • Get started without experience.
  • If you have a passion for kids, you are bound to succeed.
  • Low overheads with flat rate royalties means higher profits.

4. Dream Vacations

The franchise fee is $495 to $9,800 with an initial investment of $3,245 to $21,850. Dream Vacations is a franchise that enables franchisees to provide travel agency services at home. They provide franchisees with training so you can start easily and quickly. Franchisees also have access to substantially discounted trips so they have firsthand experiences of the vacations they are selling.

5. Maid Simple House Cleaning

The minimum investment is under $12,000. Maid Simple House Cleaning offers franchisees a host of services, including:

  • Scheduling services.
  • Billing to ensure that franchisees are paid properly and promptly.
  • Franchisees receive in-person training and ongoing support to market their businesses.

Maid Simple House Cleaning is different from other cleaning franchises because you do not need to spend on uniforms, branded vehicles or an office. One of the benefits of owning a Maid Simple House Cleaning franchise is flexibility.

There are two ownership options to choose from. The first is the owner-operator model, where you can choose to start cleaning and then hire new staff to grow your business. The manager model is ideal if you want to hire employees at the very start of your franchise. These options enable you to grow this business into the most profitable franchise at your own pace.

6. Jazzercise

The franchise fee is $2,500 if you just want to teach. It will cost you  $9,000 to $38,000 if you plan to own a centre. Jazzercise has been around since 1969 and is a fitness franchise for those interested in the health and fitness business. A Jazzercise franchise means that you make an initial investment, find the best location and get your dance moves ready.

There are also additional franchisee costs, including:

  • Sound system.
  • Business supplies.
  • Facility rent.

7. Baby Boot Camp

The cash requirement ranges from $4,000 to $6,000 with a total startup investment of $4,570 to $10,800. This franchise is a fitness business that focuses teaching  moms to work out. This is a fun way to help new moms improve their fitness without having to arrange for babysitters.

According to Baby Boot Camp Franchise, their franchisees:

  • Pay no royalties.
  • Get support with a 12-week startup timetable.
  • Do not need any previous experience of fitness.

8. Cruise Planners

Expect a franchise fee of $10,995 and an initial investment of $2,090 to $23,367. This travel company franchise is a representative of American Express, making it one of the most recognizable cruise planning companies in the U.S. A franchise can be operated from home so the initial investment means no need to fork out money on finding and leasing new premises.

According to Cruise Planners, the following are perks of investing in this franchise:

  • Affiliation with an American Express travel representative.
  • Hundreds of web-based training courses to help you run your business.
  • Coaching in aspects of business development and running a business.

9. Monkey Bars Garage Storage Solutions

The minimum investment is $5,000. Monkey Bars Garage Storage Solutions provides shelving systems and floor coatings. The company also manufactures different items, such as overhead racks and garage cabinets, including full and slat wall tiles. There is quite a low investment of $5,000, which means that Monkey Bars Garage Storage Solutions can become one of the most profitable franchises if operated properly.

According to this franchisor, the following are advantages of signing up:

  • No royalty fees to pay.
  • Franchisees receive an exclusive and protected territory.
  • Full training and support is provided.

10. Lil’ Kickers

The franchise fee is $15,000 along with an initial investment of $25,000 to $35,000 (a low franchise fee and a slightly higher initial investment). However, it is still considered to be a low-cost franchise and can become one of the most profitable franchises with its soccer program for kids.

Lil’ Kickers also aims to advertise their locations as places for the development of the senses so the impact of the program can be felt way beyond kids just playing soccer. This is a great franchise opportunity if you have experience working with kids and want to do good things for your community.

11. Fit4mom

The franchise fee is $5,495 to $10,495 with an initial investment of $6,205 to $24,285. This franchise has been popular because fitness programs for moms and kids are in high demand. Fit4moms provides different scheduling options and gives franchisees the opportunity to carry out their own Stroller Strides fitness classes, Fit4baby classes, Body Right classes and the Fit4mom run club.

This enables owners to run a franchise at a convenient time and place. The benefits include exclusive territories, flexible schedules to work around what’s best for you and support from a dedicated team to ensure that you get the best advice on how to run a successful franchise.

12. Time to Eat

The cash startup investment comes in at $12,500 with a total investment running to $25,000. This franchise opportunity takes advantage of the growing food delivery market. It enables franchisees to start a grocery and restaurant delivery business and provides the following:

  • Marketing materials.
  • Equipment.
  • Payment processing.

According to Time to Eat, they only charge a one-time franchise fee and their franchisees do not have monthly royalties.

13. SuperGlass Windshield Repair

The franchise fee is $5,000 to $17,500 plus an initial investment of $18,685 to $84,205. SuperGlass Windshield Repair provides franchisees with the opportunity to run a profitable business after only a few weeks of training. The company is based in Orlando but has operations worldwide.

The franchise focuses on mobile services, which accounts for the low startup cost. It also enables franchisees to be competitive and keep up with customer demand. If you are looking for a low-cost franchise that could potentially become one of the most profitable around, consider SuperGlass Windshield Repair.

14. Social Owl

Social Owl allows franchisees to run a successful social media business. They provide everything needed to start and manage a franchise, including a turn-key business model and branded website. With Social Owl, you need no experience in social media and they provide the following:

  • 100% of the business belongs to the franchisee.
  • The franchisee keeps 100% of the sales.
  • The franchisee has the freedom to set up his/her own plans.

If you are interested in a very low-cost franchise, which can be very profitable because of the growing need of businesses who require social media services and want the freedom to set your own prices, consider investing in Social Owl.

15. Property Management Inc.

You need to secure a franchise fee of $15,000 to $45,000 and make an initial investment of $21,250.00 to $106,800. The property management industry is growing as more people are renting their homes. Property Management Inc. provide franchisees with training, technology and marketing to grow and make their franchises as profitable as possible.

Franchisees don’t need to be experts in property management because they will get full training. So, this franchise is suitable for those who have an interest in property management or already have experience in managing property.

16. Hotel Key Kaddy

Hotel Key Kaddy is different from most franchises in the travel industry because it does not involve running your own agency. Instead, it involves marketing services directly to hotels and local business owners. It takes a minimum cash infusion of $18,900. Hotel Key Kaddy makes digital hotel room keys with information about local businesses, including restaurants and different attractions.

The basis of the franchise is that Hotel Key Kaddy provides their key caddies for free to hotels and as a franchisee, it’s your responsibility to find companies who want to advertise on those key kaddies. You then receive a portion of the sale for every person who signs up. According to Hotel Key Kaddy, franchisees have unlimited potential earnings and can quickly make this a profitable franchise.

The benefits include:

  • Little or no competition because this offering is unique.
  • Easy to track and participate in hotels.
  • No inventory requirements.

17. Mosquito Squad

The franchise fee is $15,000 to $32,500. Mosquito Squad requires an initial investment of $17,050 to $79,425. Mosquitoes can be annoying but this could be one of the most profitable franchises if you want to help people deal with this problem.

The Mosquito Squad was started in 2009 and is now a recognized brand of pest control. They have over 200 franchises and reportedly have done more than $50 million in sales. With a low franchise fee, you can benefit from third-party lender relationships with different financing companies if you need help raising the capital.

Conclusion

The 17 franchises above can be yours for under $20,000 and many can turn into some of the most profitable franchises if you follow their proven systems, put in hard work and remain persistent. These franchises show that you can start and operate a franchise for a relatively low cost.

If you start with a franchise that requires you to build a team or you have aspirations of growing a single person franchise, you need the best modern hiring software to recruit staff. Fountain offers hiring solutions for modern franchisees.

Schedule a free trial (no credit card required) and see how we can help grow your franchise with seamless, efficient and straightforward hiring and recruitment software.

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