Home Improvement Franchises - Feature Story

By Business Franchise Magazine

This article appeared in Issue 3#4 (May/June 2009) of Business Franchise Australia & New Zealand


Whether property owners wish to add value to or beautify their homes with an extra room, a second storey, a garage or fencing, an outdoor entertainment area or swimming pool, one thing’s for sure:  there’s a franchisee out there to service their needs.

Particularly in uncertain economic times, many people prefer to renovate or improve their existing homes, rather than acquiring a new one.  They simply allocate the money they would otherwise have spent on the associated costs of selling and buying, towards enhancing their existing home.

And although Australians have always been passionate about home renovation and improvements, even the do-it-yourself renovators often require the assistance of professional experts.

With many home improvement franchises currently available, the range is diverse:  bathroom re-conditioners; builders; fencing and roofing specialists; pool and spa installations; energy products; garages and carports; security providers; the list is endless.

As many home improvement franchises are also mobile businesses, owners enjoy both flexibility and variety in their working days.  Generally more affordable to buy and run, a mobile franchise eliminates expensive rentals and lengthy retail hours.  Here is just a selection of home improvement franchises on offer:

Allsafe Energy Efficient Products is striving to become the market leader in providing builders and home owners with energy efficient product solutions, such as skylights, heat pumps, ventilation systems, solar hot water and photo-voltaic panels, and insulation.  Demand for energy efficient products continues to grow substantially, due to both government encouragement and community concern for climate change.

Prospective franchisees should be interested in energy efficiency, and be enthusiastic and determined.  To help make the franchise network successful, Allsafe insists their royalty payment is lower than industry average, to further enhance the opportunity for success.

All Stripped removes ceramic, marble, slate, terracotta and vinyl tiles, as well as carpets, timber and cork flooring, and walls.  From domestic jobs to commercial and industrial strip-outs, All Stripped staff also assists with kitchen and bathroom renovations, and concrete floor grinding.

All Stripped understands its successful franchisees make a successful company, and have invested heavily in marketing, operating systems, processes and equipment.  Currently the largest tile removal company in WA, All Stripped is looking to add to its growing number of franchisees throughout Australia, especially the east coast and Adelaide.

Bathroom Werx is a National Franchise System specialising in on-site re-enamelling of baths, basins, showers and all sanitary ware fixtures and fittings.  With franchisees located throughout Australia, Bathroom Werx is almost 3 times older than its 7 year guarantee!  Bathroom makeovers are a popular alternative to expensive bathroom renovations.  Most homes have two bathrooms, and other potential customers include hotels, apartment and office buildings.

Franchisees earn money while learning a new trade, being paid during the 8-week training program.  Get into business for yourself and grown your own multi-van operation, while enjoying the sales, marketing, operational support and backup of an experienced and proven team, such as a National Call Centre that looks after all bookings.

Concrete Taxi offers a niche market franchise.  Each Taxi unit acts as a mini-batch plant, mixing concrete on site – this ensures no mess, no fuss and no stress.  The trucks can easily access small areas, taking advantage of the business that large concrete companies have to knock back.  Through company operations, territories are first developed and then sold as franchises once the customer base has been established.

State-of-the-art equipment includes Navman GPS trackers and communications equipment.  A 1300 number and the one call centre handle the bookings and distribution of work.  Current franchisees represent a cross-section of working backgrounds and trade experience is not necessary.

David Reid Homes has been raising the standard and leading the way for 15+ years in design, innovation, quality and service in building Architect Designed Homes.  With 44 franchises throughout Australia and New Zealand, it applies the same philosophy when selecting a potential franchisee.  As the continued success of David Reid Homes is based around key people and relationships, certain criteria is paramount when choosing the right franchisees as its partners.

A David Reid Homes franchisee does not require specific industry experience, just the passion to drive a business to success.  David R H are currently expanding further and looking for leaders who share the company’s values, have previous business experience and are passionate about property and design.

Garage World & Shed Boss is a network of independently Australian owned and operated businesses.  Constructions include garages and sheds, patios and awnings, workshops, commercial sheds and factories, rural sheds and barns.  In addition to domestic customers, commercial work has extended to include warehouses, indoor riding schools, aircraft hangers, gymnasiums and storage facilities.

Garage World & Shed Boss is now actively taking applications from builders and business people to operate their own outlet.  Currently with a network of 61 independently owned and operated businesses throughout Australia and New Zealand, licences are available across all States in both countries.  Garage World & Shed Boss operates under a flat fee royalty system, not a percentage-based fee, which means the more money you make, the more you keep.  The flat fee system also assists owners to budget for their costs in advance.

Goop Guys is fast becoming the market leader of temporary surface protection and peelable coatings in Australia and New Zealand.  The wholly Australian owned family business offers temporary protection products for windows, benches, bathrooms and floors.

Offering exclusive areas of operation, a Goop Guys franchise will appeal to customer service focused individuals who have a passion for quality.  With an easy to apply one coat application system, all products are environmentally friendly.  Head Office is dedicated to having the most superior products in the marketplace, its no wonder Goop Guys Franchisees are successful in their areas.

The Jim’s Group has an Australian iconic name and well-recognised logo.  Unable to service the growing demands of their clients, Jim’s is searching for more franchisees.  Jim’s is seeking to provide the highest levels of both franchisee and customer service support possible.  All bookings and enquiries are handled via call centres, allowing franchisees to focus on the actual work.  The following Divisions come under the home improvement umbrella:

Jim’s Building Maintenance has been around for 10 years, originally known as Jim’s Handyman.  Building maintenance includes major and minor maintenance repairs, renovations, bathrooms, kitchens, tiling, floorboards, plastering, carpentry, painting, brickwork, glass repair, locks and more.  The master franchise is also available.

Jim’s Fencing don't just build fences, they also assist customers in the design and painting.  Specialising in a range of steel and timber fences as well as security and pool gates, franchises are available in all areas of Australia and New Zealand.  New franchisees are offered the security of an income during 8 weeks of training and a $1,500 per week Work Availability Guarantee (conditions apply).

Jim’s Floors specialise in providing professional services in floor sanding, polishing and laying.  With approximately 30 franchisees around Australia, Jim's Floors is rapidly growing and is always looking for new prominent franchisees to become involved.  Franchises are available across Australia and New Zealand.

Jim’s Paving was launched in January 2001 and has become the leading franchised paving and complete garden construction supply and installation operation in Australia and New Zealand. Committed to providing professional service, workmanship, quality equipment and materials in the design, it supplies and services paving and associated landscaping products, including retaining walls and complete garden construction.

Jim’s Pergolas was established three years ago and includes other outside constructions such as gazebos, carports, patios and café blinds.  Benefits include initial and ongoing training, and cutting edge IT and communications.  Franchisees should be customer focused and enjoy working outdoors.

Jim’s Roofing services include cement and terracotta tile restorations, metal roofing, gutter replacement, rebedding and repointing, gutter guard installation, roof ventilation and asbestos removal.  All franchisees have the direct support of their Regional Franchisor who has hands on experience in the industry and acts as a personal business coach for each franchisee.

Kwik Kerb has been developing its decorative landscape edging business for 20 years.  Operators provide continuous concrete edging to enhance gardens, driveways and landscaped areas.  The finished product looks great and is a cost-effective method to create mower strips, driveway curbs and very functional and stylish garden edges for not only home owners, but commercial and government sites.

Operators receive comprehensive training, covering technical details of producing superior curbing, maintaining the machinery, and sales and marketing techniques.  An affordable business opportunity, many Kwik Kerb operators recover their initial investment in less than a year.

Outside Concepts is an old franchise with a new name.  ‘Mr Carports’ has been around for 19 years but the focus is now more on outdoor living designs, such as high quality pergolas, verandahs, gazebos, decking, entertainment areas, pool and spa enclosures, and café blinds.  They still build carports, but it now represents less than 40% of the work.  With around 30 franchises across the nation and a turnover of around $8 million, Outside Concepts is regarded as one of the largest retailers of outdoor structures in Australia.

Some experience within the building industry would be an advantage for potential franchisees, but is not imperative.  Successful franchisees should however, have excellent people skills, management abilities and be familiar with computers.  Keeping an open mind and being willing to accept new ideas and different ways of doing things would also be beneficial.

PoolWerx is the world’s largest pool and spa care network of retail stores and mobile vans, offering all pool products, equipment installation, maintenance and repairs, chemical delivery and expert regular servicing.  You do not require prior experience in pool and spa management to become a successful PoolWerx franchisee.

PoolWerx operates an in-house 'Pool School' staffed by professional educators through a Registered Training Organisation.  Franchisees have the training support of a Regional Development Manager; more than 30 National Support Office staff; and frequent interaction with fellow franchisees.  There are over 280 PoolWerx franchises across Australia and New Zealand.

Roof Seal has been associated with the roof restoration and replacement industry for 20+ years.  It is part of the Seal Group of Companies, which encompasses eight different products, including quality roof restorations and re-roofing, decorate concrete resurfacing, roller shutters, insulation, guttering and heat reflective roof coatings.

Identifying master franchising as the way forward, Roof Seal is offering exclusive geographical regions throughout Australia.  Roof Seal customers telephone the 1300 number and are automatically transferred to the master franchisee in the customer’s area.  Individuals interested in a franchise need not be trade professionals, as Head Office conducts extensive on and off-site training.

Spray Pave Australia is a business opportunity with the many benefits of a franchise.  Operators apply new concrete 1-3mm thick over existing concrete, in a range of colours and designs, making it ideal for driveways, patios, verandahs, ramps, carports, pool surrounds, decks and paths.  

Operators are trained in spray paving, epoxy flooring, polishing, staining, waterproofing, imitation slate, sandstone, timber floor boards and non-slip tile treatments.  Securing domestic, commercial and government work, Spray Pave offers individuals a range of business package models to start their own business.

THE Shed Company is a fully Australian owned and operated company that specialises in the design, supply and installation of a huge range of premium quality prefabricated steel buildings including carports, garages, barns, farm sheds, industrial and commercial buildings.

The franchise system provides an ideal opportunity for a licensed builder or shed contractor to enter this rapidly growing market to build a sound and highly profitable full-time business.  Franchisees use their own building knowledge and experience, combined with the franchisor’s developed experience, building designs, state-of-the-art computer software, business systems and know-how. There are no ongoing franchise service fees.

Tile Rescue has developed superior tile restoration procedures that can be taught to potential franchisees from all types of employment backgrounds.  The franchisor provides hands on training and complete support, including the comprehensive Tile Rescue® Franchisee Kit and various Manuals.

Franchisees enjoy the benefits of being their own boss without the risk of being on their own and enjoy the best of worth worlds:  personal and professional lifestyle satisfaction.  Interested individuals should be motivated and enthusiastic, and enjoy meeting people while earning a lucrative income.

Watch 24 Security Services is one of the top Australian security alarm providers of quality, affordable, leading technology wireless security systems for homes and businesses. Watch 24 is currently seeking sales professionals, with or without prior security experience, who want to own their own business.

Franchisees should have ambition and high ethnical standards.  Watch 24 offers low start-up costs, full-time or part-time hours, and full company training.  There are more than 100 licensed security advisers in all capital cities, plus many State and Territory regional centres.

Wet-seal encompasses all facets of waterproofing and sealing of internal and external wet areas for residential, commercial and industrial applications. It also supplies and installs under-tile and in-slab heating systems.  With over 25 years of experience and award winning systems, Wet-seal are the industry leaders in Australia and New Zealand.

Franchisees receive the highest level of support, starting with six weeks of intensive training, plus ongoing training for technical, sales, IT and administrative support.  Franchisees benefit from group buying power, a low entry cost, exclusive territories and two franchises for the price of one (waterproofing and under-floor heating).