Four Questions to Ask Franchisees Before Buying A Franchise

Four Questions to Ask Franchisees Before Buying A Franchise

Franchise Advice from NOVUS Glass, St. Paul, MN

One of life’s most exciting experiences is the day you decide to become a business owner. No more of the old grind for you! You’re about to experience the highs (and lows) of managing your own future, creating wealth that will benefit you and your family. You get to be in control, at last, and make the decisions. You’ve likely done a lot of research, reviewing dozens of concepts, and agonizingover choosing just the right business in which to sink your hard-earned savings. However, before you sign the contract, make sure you’ve done the final bit of due diligence by talking to other franchisees. The franchisor’s FDD (Franchise Disclosure Document) contains a list of current and former franchisees, and you will need to call a good selection and find answers to a number of questions, including:

1. How Long Did It Take You To Break Even?

The franchisor may provide the average time it will take a franchisee to break even, once the business is opened, but you should verify this information with the people who have been where you are now. This information is important because you need to plan on financing your personal living expenses, in addition to the business expenses, until the business starts to make a profit. Knowing how much to have is critical because being underfinanced is a sure road to failure.

2. How Much Can I Expect To Make?

Having others to talk to is helpful for franchisees so use your call to build rapport with those you contact. In the same way, it is important to ask any financial questions with sensitivity. Some may be willing to share this information, others may not. If you are able to get this information, ask the franchisee what pieces they feel contributed to their success, or what issues led to less than stellar results. These “shares” are golden nuggets that will help you as you build your business.

3. How Would You Rate The Training Provided By The Franchisor?

It is no secret that the better the training, the faster your business will start earning you money. This is information many franchisees will have an opinion about and will probably share. Ask them about the most helpful training they received, and what subjects they wished would have been covered, but were not.

4. Has The On-Going Support From The Franchisor Been What You Expected?

Good support from your franchisor is absolutely critical to a new franchise owner. Areas where they may help you include site location, build-out, POS operations, the grand opening, advice on hiring and training employees, local and national advertising, ongoing training, and much more. Ask the franchisors you contact if they’ve been happy with this support. Make sure you ask new as well as seasoned franchisees so that you can see what you will experience at various times during your business ownership experience.

A final piece of advice is that calling franchisees is not a step to skip in your franchise selection journey. If you want the truth about a business, go to those who will be your peers, fellow travelers on the franchise road.

To learn more about the NOVUS Glass franchise experience, go to, or call 800-944-6811.