Guest Post By Harold Shumacher | President, The Shumacher Group, Inc.

So you’ve finally decided to become a franchise owner. Whatever the business, the most important factor may very well be to find the best franchise location.

When I was new to the real estate industry, an experienced professional told me the three most critical issues in a brick and mortar business are location, location location. Little has changed in this area.

You’ve completed your research. You are now prepared to select your franchise location. What comes next?

You can always look around on your own, identify available properties, track down the leasing agent, strike a deal and then pray that you have found the right franchise location.

The better solution is often to find a commercial real estate specialist. This professional can assist you in finding the best possible franchise location.

How can a commercial leasing specialist help you? This professional can demystify and streamline perhaps the most critical decision you’ll make as a franchisee, the franchise location. If you have used a real estate agent to buy a house, the process is similar with franchise locations.

Should You Use A Franchise Location Specialist?

The real estate specialist (a.k.a. tenant rep) works for you to help find the best possible franchise location. This professional should furnish you current market information and rental costs for the franchise location.

Remember, along with the rent, tenants typically pay a portion of taxes, maintenance and insurance for most franchise locations.

The real estate specialist should know about new projects being planned that might meet your needs for your franchise location, including anticipated completion dates. Perhaps the most useful insights a tenant rep can offer are if any suitable properties may now or soon be available for your franchise location.

How do I find the right leasing specialist? Your franchisor might already have relationships with leasing specialists. This professional could be your first stop in finding your franchise location.

If your franchisor can’t refer you to a leasing specialist or you don’t wish to utilize the franchisor’s contact, ask other business owners and your advisors for referrals. In many large markets there are tenant reps that specialize in particular areas such as restaurants, retail, etc. and that can help you identify the best possible franchise location.

How much does a leasing specialist cost? Frequently, the broker is compensated by the lessor. You often are required to sign a form describing which party the leasing agent represents and who is paying the agent. Always ask if the relationship is unclear.

Now, good luck selecting your franchise location.

Harold Shumacher is the president and managing broker of The Shumacher Group, Inc. an Atlanta, GA based firm that specializes in representing national and regional retail and restaurant companies. Throughout its 25 plus year history, the company has worked with several national franchisors and has helped select hundreds of franchise locations…..

If you would like to speak with one of our franchise consultants today, please don’t hesitate to call (706) 356-5637!