Senior Care Franchises
Is a Home Care Franchise a Good or Bad Investment?
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Senior Care Franchises - By Robert Edwards
What are Senior Care Franchises? Well the majority in the market today are Non-Medical in home care. So these are caregivers that drive around helping seniors in their homes with things like cooking, cleaning, medication reminders, showering etc. In addition to non medical in home care there are also some companies that provide medical in home care, senior placement services, and other services that assist seniors in some way. As franchise consultants we work with over 30 senior care brands, and each one has a slightly different business model. Some might be better for your location depending on the demographics they specialize in and a number of other factors. We'll cover more on that later.
Now to start off let's look at the bullish aspects of senior care franchising first. This is what the salesperson will tell you.
From a demographic perspective 10,000 baby boomers turn 65 every day in the USA. This trend will continue for many years as the largest segment of the population gets older. In fact according to the US Census by 2060 Boomers will make up almost 25% of the population. Now many seniors prefer to "age in place" as they call it - they aren't ready to go to a care facility, but are not necessarily capable of doing all the things they used to do without assistance.
Elder care as an industry is expected to grow to 400 million annually by 2018. The Bureau of Labor Statistics sees future job growth of 70% for industry professionals over the coming decade.
Now the more you look at the statistical validation of senior care as an industry the more you see dollar signs in your eyes and get ready to sign that franchise agreement.
But hold on a second. I am going to show you information taken from the Franchise disclosure document of a very well known senior care brand. These numbers represent store openings and closures over a 3 year period. You can see here they opened 18 stores in 2014, but in 2015 they closed 8 stores and in 2016 they closed 22 stores! They also closed 3 company owned stores.
Now I'm not suggesting to abandon all your dreams of buying a senior care franchise, what I am suggesting is that you proceed in a more analytical fashion and remember just because it is senior care does not mean you are guaranteed success.
We help clients research senior care brands today I will illustrate some of the things we look at when helping select the best one. And why there is no such thing as the "Best Senior care Franchise". There is way too much information to list on a short video so lets look at a couple of criteria we use and why it is critical to pick the right brand.
I have a cheat sheet here that lists the 32 top senior care franchises, the investment amounts, and some of the market differentiators, that's available free contact us for details.
So first off let's look at your market demographics. If you don't know them you can head over to city-data.com - a fantastic resource that will provide a ton of demographic and statistical insight into your area.
Now the first consideration is to align your local market demand with a franchise that targets that demographic. Some senior care brands focus on more affluent neighborhoods and their services reflect that. Some franchises focus more on longer term stays, generally with older people. Some to shorter stays of just a couple of hours. Now if you pick the wrong franchise, and for example have a premium service and premium price, and you live in a blue collar neighborhood you won't do as well as you could. So always make sure the franchise market focus makes sense for your area.
Next consideration is their operational model. Some franchises have very stringent requirements for owners to be out in the community selling. Local networking, business development, chamber of commerce. That type of activity is mandatory for you to be successful and is an essential part of the model. But if you not a social person, or don't particularly like sales, you may want to explore franchises that have internet lead generation programs available, or perhaps National Alliances that provide an ongoing source of leads. Again both these franchises can be good, you just need to make sure that your skills and desired operational model are in alignment.
Now once these two key elements have been selected we can drill down further to things like whether you prefer to offer medical or non medical care. Medical can widen your net of available clients, but can increase regulatory requirements, employee salaries, and other factors. Some states are very difficult to obtain licensing and can take months to receive approval - make sure you are aware of this before you sign on.
Some states also allow for operation from your home, others will need an office. So the state you live in will also be a consideration when you choose a brand.
Always look at at least 3 franchises to compare things such as franchisee support and satisfaction rates, royalties, territory sizes, whether you have protected territory or accounts, failure and growth rates and more.
A senior care franchise can be a good investment as long as you do your research. If you need help researching and selecting a franchise you can learn more about us at on our Franchise Consultants Page.