Small Franchises – 15 Low Cost Options

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There were roughly 745,290 franchise establishments operating in the U.S in 2017, with an estimated 14,000 new franchise locations opened in 2018. Franchising is a popular way for people to become their own boss. Individuals who invest in a low cost franchise reap the benefits of using a proven business model, while receiving support.

The financial commitment needed to operate a franchise varies greatly. For example, to be considered for a McDonald’s franchise, you will need a minimum investment of $500,000 of non-borrowed personal resources. However, if you do not have a large budget, it is possible to invest in a low cost franchise.

The best low cost franchise for you will depend on the amount you can invest, your interests and your experience.

Below are 15 low cost franchise opportunities to suit different business interests.


1. Amazing Athletes

Cash requirement - $17,500

Total start-up investment - $25,000 – $55,650

Amazing Athletes provide health and sports classes for children aged 2.5 to 6 years old. According to Amazing Athletes this business is located in 28 states, with more than 100 franchise units.

If the best low cost franchise opportunity for you is one that is home-based, consider Amazing Athletes. This is a mobile franchise so, you are not required to buy or lease a storefront.

The following are some benefits of investing in this franchise, according to Amazing Athletes:

  • No specific experience required, as franchise owners come from different types of backgrounds.
  • A passion for kids and the willingness to make your business a success are the only two things that are necessary.
  • High profits, low overheads and flat-rate royalties.
  • Ongoing support is provided via a personal franchise liaison, an internal mentor program, monthly conference calls and more.

2. Soccer Shots

Cash requirement - $29,500

Total start-up investment - $31,742 – $38,500

Soccer Shots is based in Pennsylvania and provides soccer programs for kids and also manages coaches. Soccer Shots advise that franchisees can host programs at different facilities, like preschools and parks. This franchise can be found in 34 states across 170 territories.

Soccer Shots state that:

  • Their top first year earner has made $362,738 in yearly revenue.
  • You will need to hire employees to cope with the demand of your business.
  • In certain circumstances, you can hire a manager to operate your business.

3. Image One Facility Solutions

Cash requirement - $15,000

Total start-up investment - $29,750 – $103,208

Image One Facility Solutions provides the opportunity to own a commercial janitorial business. This franchise was launched in 2010 and its franchisees operate in cities like, Orlando, Detroit and Chicago. There are nearly 100 franchisees and the Image One Facility Solutions Website provides the following responses to some frequently asked questions:

  • Some franchisees choose to operate their business part-time and others opt for the full-time route.
  • After you have made a down payment, there is financing available for the remainder of the franchise costs.
  • You will be given guidance to hire and train your employees.

4. Healthy YOU Vending

Cash requirement - $30,000

Total start-up investment - $30,000 - $225,000

This business opportunity is not a franchise in the strictest sense. Healthy YOU Vending allows you to place vending machines with healthy snacks at different locations. You are able to monitor your machines via mobile devices, for ease and convenience.

According to Healthy YOU Vending, they provide franchise-level support without the associated ongoing costs. For instance, you do not have to pay marketing fees or royalties.

Healthy YOU Vending states that they will:

  • Assist you in locating places for your vending machines.
  • Provide lifetime coaching and corporate training.
  • Help you to maintain and grow your vending business.

5. Baby Boot Camp

Cash requirement - $4,000 – $6,000

Total start-up investment - $4,570 – $10,800

This low cost franchise opportunity trains franchisees to teach workout classes to new moms. Baby Boot Camp was founded as a way for new moms to get fit, while spending time with their babies.

The following are answers to some frequently asked questions about the Baby Boot Camp franchise:

  • Franchisees do not pay royalties.
  • Support is provided with a 12-week start up timetable, coaching calls and more.
  • There is no requirement to be an experienced fitness professional.
  • A passion for health and wellness, combined with the drive to support moms is necessary.

6. Chem-Dry

Cash requirement - $30,000

Total start-up investment - $56,495 - $162,457

Chem-Dry Carpet Cleaning was founded in 1977 and provides franchisees with the opportunity to use a patented method to clean carpets. According to Chem-Dry, carpets account for over 52% of residential flooring in the U.S and this creates a large customer base for franchisees.

Chem-Dry lists the following as benefits of investing in their franchise:

  • You can choose whether you want one or several territories, therefore controlling the size of your business.
  • Internal financing is available after you make your down payment.

7. HealthSource

Cash requirement - $30,000

Total start-up investment - $60,641 - $246,697

HealthSource asserts that they are the leading franchise that offers physical therapy, massage, nutritional and chiropractic services. They also claim to be the only franchise that operates in five distinct multi-billion dollar industries. Given that Americans spend around $50 billion every year on issues relating to back pain, HealthSource believe that franchisees will not struggle to obtain customers.

The benefits below are associated with owning this Franchise, according to HealthSource:

  • Doctors are given the freedom to treat patients, while HealthSource takes care of staffing, training, billing and other business-related issues.
  • Specialist software is provided for complex billing and for compliance purposes.
  • HealthSource University teaches doctors and their teams about efficient practice management.

8. Time To Eat

Cash start-up investment - $12,500

Total investment - $25,000

The Time To Eat grocery and restaurant delivery franchise package enables you to start a grocery and/or restaurant delivery business. This low-cost franchise opportunity is for those who want to be a part of the growing home food delivery market. A study has found that the food delivery market is predicted to experience a 79% growth by 2022.

Time To Eat provides their franchisees with everything required to start and grow their business, including:

  • Equipment
  • Marketing materials
  • Payment Processing
  • Custom Websites

Time To Eat state that they only charge a one-time fee, which enables you to receive support for many years. Their franchisees are not required to pay monthly fees or royalties.

9. Mattress By Appointment

Cash requirement - $20,000

This low cost franchise opportunity is an alternative to conventional retail sleep shops and furniture stores. Mattress By Appointment claims that their business operates in 45 states. You are able to determine your own schedule through online and telephone appointments and there is no need to cold call.

It is claimed that you will gain the following benefits with a Mattress by Appointment franchise:

  • Weekly training and support calls.
  • A turnkey business.
  • Access to all the biggest mattress brands.

10. FireMaster®

Cash requirement - $10,000

Total start-up investment - $10,000 - $60,000

FireMaster may be one of the best low cost franchises for you if you have an interest in fire safety. This franchise helps businesses to operate safely with the provision of equipment installation and fire suppression systems. Your main goal as an owner of this franchise is to give property owners the tools to manage and reduce fire risks.

FireMaster asserts that the following is available to you if you become a franchisee:

  • Support and help with bookkeeping, clerical and back office administrative tasks.
  • Help with marketing materials.
  • Special financial incentives if you are a qualified veteran.

11. Hommati

Cash Requirement - $30,000

Total start-up investment - As low as $29,980

Hommati is an innovative, low cost franchise that offers you the opportunity to provide services to realtors, as a drone pilot. Hommati asserts that by 2020, commercial drones will be a $127 billion global industry.

This franchise could provide you with the opportunity to offer ground-breaking services to real estate professionals, including:

  • 3D interactive tours.
  • Virtual staging.
  • Aerial HD video / stills.

Hommati advises that their pricing package is unique because:

  • They have negotiated fees with industry partners.
  • There are no tangible material costs, as the service is digital.
  • The amount of services a franchisee can perform.

12. Complete Weddings and Events

Cash requirement - $10,000

Total start-up investment - $30,350 – $48,650

Complete Weddings and Events provides customized packages, which include photography, DJ services and lighting for weddings and events. If you are passionate about events and weddings, this low cost franchise opportunity may be for you. Complete Weddings and Events declare that the wedding industry is worth $72 billion. This combined with their network of experts and their 45 years of experience will help you to succeed.

Here are answers to some frequently asked questions on the Complete Weddings and Events website:

  • You have the flexibility to operate your business from home when you first start.
  • You will be ready to open a storefront if you have reached specific milestones.
  • You can hire a manager to operate your business if they have completed the necessary training.

13. The Inspection Boys

Cash requirement – $25,000

Total start-up investment – $29,950 - $44,800

The Inspection Boys provide home inspection services and claim that they are “North America’s most interactive and hands on Home Inspection Franchise!” This low cost franchise gives you the chance to start a business inspecting homes for people who want to purchase somewhere to live. The Inspection Boys state that they offer a quality service for their clients as well as a high level of support to their franchisees.

The following are benefits of owning this franchise, according to The Inspection Boys:

  • Business development training.
  • Technical support.
  • Direct communication with the team.

14. Kinderdance® International

Cash requirement - $15,000 (starting)

According to Kinderdance®, they are “the largest and fastest growing "Education through Dance, Motor Development, Gymnastics, Music and Fitness" program for young children today.” They also claim to be the largest children’s franchise in the world.

If you are passionate about working with children and helping them to develop creative thinking and problem solving through dance and movement, Kinderdance®, could be one of the best low cost franchise opportunities for you.

You can choose between four different types of territories with this franchise. The first choice is a $15,000 investment for people who want to teach classes themselves. The other investment choices are:

  • $20,000
  • $30,000
  • $40,000

Kindercare list the following as advantages of owning one of their franchises:

  • Low investment required.
  • Low overheads.
  • Dance experience is not required.
  • Flexible hours.

15. Club Z!

Cash requirement – $10,000 - $15,000

Total start-up investment – $30,000 - $55,000

Club Z is a home-based tutoring franchise, which gives you the ability to grow your business to suit your needs. You will have access to Club Z’s online tutoring and test prep services, which provide the potential to earn more, without carrying out extra work.  

According to Club Z, you will benefit from their franchise in the following ways:

  • They provide pre-screened and qualified tutors.
  • Tutors are qualified in all subjects and grade levels.
  • They invest in a significant national advertising and marketing campaign to promote the franchise.

The fifteen low cost franchises above demonstrate that there are different franchises to suit every pocket. Most franchisors offer a complete training package, so it is not necessary for you to be already qualified in your chosen business field.

Owning a franchise is also suited to people who have different aspirations. There are some franchises that are solely home-based and can be operated by only one person. On the other hand, some franchisors require that franchisees hire staff to ensure business success.

If you are franchisor that requires your franchisees to hire staff, try Fountain to help your franchisees to quickly and efficiently source, hire and retain top talent.

Request a demo and our friendly team will give you a personalized walkthrough of our recruitment software that could improve your franchisees’ experience.

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