The franchise checklist

Sarah Stowe

A simple guide to the essentials you need to check before you buy.

  • Are you confident in the franchisor?
  • Have you seen a disclosure document?
  • Is the franchisor compliant with the Franchising Code of Conduct?
  • Have you run a credit check on the franchisor?
  • Does the franchisor have a history of litigation?
  • For an existing business, have you seen current financial statements (balance sheets, profit and loss, tax returns)?
  • For a brand new site, do you have sales and profit examples and know the method behind the calculations?
  • Have you evaluated the financial returns?
  • Do you know all the expenses franchisees are required to pay?
  • Do you know how the royalties are calculated?
  • Have you worked out your operating costs?
  • Do you know the term of the agreement?
  • Do you need a permit or licence to operate the business?
  • Have you checked the lease? Is there a right to renew?
  • What are the store fit-out costs?
  • Are you working within a territory? If so is the area exclusive?
  • Are you restricted in your product purchase?
  • What are the franchisee and franchisor obligations?
  • Is the franchisor embracing the digital environment and social media?
  • What training is available and who pays for it?
  • Who owns the intellectual property and what is licensed to the franchisee?
  • What marketing will the franchisor implement?
  • What marketing is your responsibility?
  • What is the dispute resolution process?
  • Have you spoken to former and current franchisees about the business?
  • What restrictions are there when selling on the franchised business?
  • How can the franchisor or franchisee terminate the franchise agreement?