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NOW it the TIME to get into FRANCHISING!!!

It's always a great time to get into franchising. Yet for entrepreneurs seeking to start and build their own business, some times are better than others to consider franchising as the vehicle for attaining their personal and business goals. Whether you're a 30-something Millennial, or a 60-something and laid off from a lifetime of working for someone else, franchisors have something to offer if you're just starting out on the road to business ownership. So why now?

Today's uncertain, slow-growth economy has consumers counting every penny and spending fewer of them each day. This leaves businesses with less margin for error than in flush times, so entrepreneurs need all the help they can get. Franchising offers that help, providing a successful business model; a proven system; structure; training in how to start, manage, and grow your business; a known brand name; marketing materials and national advertising campaigns; a network of fellow franchisees; and ongoing support through the years, from startup to exit.

Millennials, coming of age when lifetime employment and retirement with a gold watch seemed like quaint old story, were bitten early by the entrepreneurial bug and see starting their own company or solopreneurial business as quite natural. While many are willing to start their own business, their abundance of energy and enthusiasm cannot make up for their lack of business experience, so many starting out seek the support and guidance a franchisor offers.

We've said it before and we'll say it again. In the world of franchising: 1) Making it on your own does not mean making it by yourself; and 2) Why reinvent the wheel?

That's why franchise opportunities in growing sectors such as senior care are attractive today: with Baby Boomers aging by the day, this sector is guaranteed to expand in the coming decades.

Another factor is the time crunch so prevalent in two-income families. Time-saving services such as house cleaning, child care, pet walking, and lawn services are one answer for those with disposable income -- and these markets are not going away any time soon.

The low unemployment rate in 2017 means that many of the best jobs are filled, that competition for openings is fierce, and that people with good jobs are less likely to leave them in a shrinking job market. This is driving many to seek alternatives -- such as franchising, which offers opportunities outside the traditional employment search. Combine this with a decades-long decline in wages and buying power, and you have more and more people looking to start their own business to provide them with the security they no longer can find working for someone else.

If you're the right type of person (someone who can follow a system, stick to their franchise agreement, and work well in a collaborative environment) and you pick a strong brand that matches your goals and values, franchising might just be your ticket to success. And let it be said: franchising is not for everyone.

If you want to give franchising a look, be sure to read or reread previous chapters in this How-To Franchise Guide, especially chapters 1-7. In short, be sure to compare franchising with self-employment; conduct a self-inventory; research industries that seem right for you; and please, do your homework and due diligence by speaking with franchisees as well as franchisors.

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