The Best Franchises to Buy in America in 2018

Entrepreneurs interested in beginning their first business may want to consider the advantages of a franchise.

Franchises give business owners access to tried-and-true business models, experience, and training. In America alone, there are thousands of franchises available — from boutique businesses with a handful of franchised locations to large, global chains.

Every year, Entrepreneur creates a list of the top 500 franchises. These franchises are ranked by budget, fastest growing, top brands, and top new franchises, and they are selected based on a number of factors from financial performance to upfront cost. This year, Entrepreneur’s Top 10 franchises were:

A McDonald’s franchise has some fairly heavy-hitting requirements, with a “bootcamp” for potential investors and a minimum investment of $1 million. But there’s a reason why: a McDonald’s franchise is almost guaranteed to succeed. If you can get through their rigorous on-boarding process, you’re likely to have a profitable venture on your hands.

7-11 has been franchising since 1964, and offers initial investments as low as $37,550. This is achievable because 7-11 stores are generally tailored to the neighborhood. Net worth requirements range from $100,000 to $250,000, with liquid cash requirements of $100,000 to $150,000. 7-11s are being opened across North America, and often prove to be valued additions to their neighborhoods.

Dunkin’ Donuts
Dunkin’ Donuts is currently looking to expand throughout the globe. An initial franchise fee of $40,000 to $90,000 is required, with an on-going royalty fee of 5.9%. Dunkin’ Donuts offers over 70 varieties of donuts, in addition to coffee and breakfast sandwiches. It has name recognition in a number of countries.

The UPS Store
Businesses and individuals often turn to the UPS store for their brick-and-mortar shipping needs. The UPS Store has an initial franchise fee of $29,950, with a liquid cash requirement of $60,000. UPS Store franchises offer packaging, shipping, and copying and printing services.
RE/MAX LLC. A RE/MAX LLC franchise can be started with as little as $38,000, which is impressive given the amount of potential profit within the real estate industry. RE/MAX LLC franchises are comprised of real estate agents, working together under a high commission concept. An initial franchise fee ranges from $15,000 to $32,000.

Sonic Drive-In Restaurants
Sonic Drive-In has fairly significant buy-in, with a low initial investment of $1,073,000 and an initial franchise fee of $45,000. A full service drive-in restaurant, Sonic maintains a presence throughout the United States.

Great Clips
With an initial investment as low as $137,000, Great Clips is one of the most affordable franchises on this list. The initial franchise fee is $20,000. Great Clips is a hair salon company that is often featured in malls. No hair care experience is required.

Taco Bell
One of the most popular fast food franchises, Taco Bell is a known name throughout the World. With that in mind, the $25,000 to $45,000 initial franchise fee for Taco Bell is extremely reasonable. Those who are interested in owning a solid fast food franchise may find Taco Bell an accessible entrypoint.

In recent years, Hardee’s has been reducing its company-owned stores and increasing its franchises. A Hardee’s franchise requires an initial investment of $1.4 million, but in return a franchisee gains access to an immensely successful restaurant business popular throughout the Midwest.

Sport Clips
Similar to Great Clips, Sport Clips is a hair styling franchise that requires no previous experience in hair styling. A sports-themed barbershop environment, Sport Clips has an initial franchise fee as low as $25,000.

Entrepreneur’s list is comprehensive, but those aren’t the only good franchises available — they are simply the ones that are currently performing well in America. Fast food restaurants and low cost hair salons, for instance, are staples that are successful regardless of economic strength. Selecting a franchise is often as much about finding the right franchise for the market as well as finding the right franchise for you.

Starting a franchise is not without its risk, but it’s less risky as a whole than starting a brand new business. Entrepreneurs who have a liquid investment at hand and solid financials may want to look into procuring a franchise as a way to begin their first business.


Ethan Warrick
Wealth Authority

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