Home Based Franchises Grow in Popularity but Operating These Franchises
Requires Certain Skills
by Ed Teixeira
As the popularity of virtual or home office businesses increase, so do
franchises that can be operated from the home. Home based franchises provide
individuals an opportunity to purchase a low cost franchise with the added
flexibility of a home based operation. However, there are certain challenges
that a home based office presents.
There is little doubt that the availability of new technologies has
accelerated the use of home based offices. The fax machine has been replaced by
scanners, international telephone calls replaced with Skype and webinars can now
take the place of telephone conference calls. In the past, a person that
operated from a remote location would have limited resources to manage their
affairs. Today, it’s become common place for business owners and employees to
work from home.
This phenomenon has impacted the franchise industry as evidenced by the large
number of home based franchise opportunities. A review of home based franchise
concepts has revealed some interesting results.
The leading categories that feature home based franchises are:
- Maintenance Services which include commercial and
residential cleaning, carpet cleaning, landscape, lawn care and
- Children’s Services which include education, tutoring,
creative and enrichment programs, fitness programs and other
- Business Services that include products and services for the
business community such as consulting, business coaching,
temporary staffing, advertising and specialty business products.
- Home Improvement Services that include interior and exterior
painting, kitchen and bathroom remodeling, interior designs,
window treatments and floor coverings.
These four franchise categories alone combine for a total of over two hundred
franchise programs. If we exclude food and hospitality franchises, which require
a physical location, from total franchises in the U.S. then the home based
franchise concepts account for almost 50% of total franchises for sale.
There are a number of advantages that a home based franchise offers:
- Lower start-up costs versus the traditional “bricks and
- Less liability in terms of equipment and leases
- Typically faster and easier to launch the new business
- Greater flexibility in terms of personal life and work
- Home based offices are more accepted by individuals and
businesses compared to years ago
- Women and seniors may find it easier to operate from a home
- Technology facilitates ease of operations. Tools such as
gotomeeting.com enable presentations and demos.
Challenges of operating a home based franchise:
- Requires personal discipline. The advantage of personal and
business flexibility can be a disadvantage without proper
- There is a lack of brand identity that a physical
- Franchisee should have certain technological skills
- Most home based concepts require strong pro-active selling
- Interruptions and distractions from family members
- Some individuals and businesses may be suspect of home based
- Not enough space and a lack of privacy
- Working too many hours can add to family stress
There are significant franchise opportunities that feature home based
operations. In the majority of cases a home based franchise can enable an
individual with limited capital to own and operate their own business. However,
to be successful the home based franchisee has to exercise personal discipline
in order to be successful. Finally, I would suggest that the home based
franchisee conduct their daily work schedule in the same manner as if they were
going to an office, minus the commute.
© 2010 FranchiseKnowHow, LLC
Ed Teixeira is the President of FranchiseKnowHow, LLC. He
can be reached at