Becoming a franchisee is an attractive option for many aspiring entrepreneurs who feel more comfortable with a significant amount of guidance during their first business endeavor. This blog is structured as a general guide to help you understand the steps you need to take to open your own franchise in the state of Florida.
Before you take the first real step, you need to have done an extensive amount of research and due diligence. It is helpful to enlist the services of a franchise consultant to help you discern the opportunities and potential pitfalls afforded to you as a franchisee in your territory. You should also be aware of the tradeoffs associated with being a franchisee.
Step. 1: Meet with a potential franchisor for a “discovery day.”
After you have done a significant amount of research, you will then reach out to companies you are interested in becoming a franchisee for. You will get a chance to find out more information about the specific franchisor at a discovery day. Also, you should ask any questions about the Franchise Disclosure Document (FDD) that the prospective franchisor sent you prior to the in-person meeting.
Step 2: Scout out possible locations and speak to other franchisees.
Often, you will get the chance to talk to other franchisees at a discovery day. You should ask them questions that you might have felt uncomfortable asking the prospective franchisor. Additionally, you should choose a few potential locations for your franchise. There are different procedures and protocols among different franchisors for choosing a location. The franchisor will usually offer a territory in the FDD; you might then be charged with finding some spots within your territory. The location will need to be approved by the franchisor.
Step 3: Review the franchise agreement sent to you after your discovery day.
Many franchisors will make a decision on whether or not they would like you as a franchisee shortly after discovery day wraps up. If you made a good impression and checked all the franchisor’s boxes, then they will move the process forward by sending you the franchise agreement and specifying a date by which they want a decision.
Step 4: Make sure you have enough funding to proceed as a franchisee.
When you have settled on the company for which you want to be a franchisee, you need to review your funding options and be completely sure you have sufficient capital to start. There are a variety of public programs that offer loans to those looking to start a small business. The franchisor also might offer some sort of loan program for you.
Step 5: Sign the franchise agreement and begin gathering the necessary licenses and permits.
Signing a franchise agreement is an exciting time, but it is then that the real work begins. Your franchisor will be heavily involved in helping you open your location. One big part of this is training you and other members of your staff to get ready for your franchise’s opening day.
Trembly Law Firm is passionate about helping Miami-area entrepreneurs and business owners have a successful enterprise. Our firm can help you check all required legal boxes no matter which part of the franchising process you are in. Call us at 305-431-5678 to get started on a consultation.