You have questions... We have answers.
Q. What Benefits do I receive when I become a franchise?
A. The benefits are many. You will have the right to use our federally trademarked name, Assist-2-Sell. The marketing program, one that is unique and extremely effective in attracting home sellers and buyers, is yours to implement in your marketplace. You will attend our training class where you will learn everything from how to set up and organize an office in a high volume environment to learning the specifics of marketing; how, when and where to direct your marketing and what fees to offer based on current market conditions. In addition, you will learn how to recruit and compensate agents. Our support mechanism is unparalleled. On-going support and mentoring is just a phone call away. You have direct access to experienced support personnel and unlimited access to our franchise only online resource center, and more.
Q. How much is the initial franchise fee?
A. The initial franchise fee is $14,500
Q. When do we pay the franchise fee?
A. After we have approved your application, we will prepare a franchise agreement. You pay the franchise fee when you sign and return the franchise agreement.
Q. How much is the on-going royalty?
A. 5% of the gross income for the office. Example: You sell a home and earn a $3000 commission. The royalty would be $150. An additional 1% is collected for a marketing development fund.
Q. How hard is it to get approved to buy a franchise?
A. Not hard. You need to be financially stable. Generally this means that you have the funds necessary to buy the franchise, equip an office, invest in start-up advertising, and cover operating costs as well as your personal expenses for the first few months. The amount varies from market to market. You don't need to be rich to buy a franchise, but as with any business, you need to have adequate funds to get the business started and give it time to grow.
We also look to see that you have adequate real estate experience and local market knowledge. Minimally you need at least three years of residential real estate experience. You need a brokers license, or you need someone working with you who has a brokers license.
Q. Can we operate out of our home office?
A.No. We do require that you have a professional office location. The requirements are minimal. Many find an "executive suite" set up works best when just starting out. Again, we will help you determine the best plan based on your projected growth rate.
Q. Do I have to work in the business myself?
A. Yes, we do prefer owners work in building their business. This is most important the first few years.
Q. How much money can I expect to make by owning a franchise office?
A. We do not make representations on how much business you might expect to do or how much money you can make. There are too many factors that differ from market to market.
Q. Do homeowners who list with Assist-2-Sell offices have to show their home?
A. Don't confuse us with "For Sale by Owner" type companies. Our concept is based on offering full service for less commission than typically charged. When managing a large listing portfolio, it makes sense for the seller to host the open house but showings are done by our agents. If a particular home does not suit the buyer, you will be able to show any other homes you have listed, including MLS listings.
Q. How much do we charge sellers to sell homes?
A. Each office independently sets their fees. We, of course, offer you guidance in determining a pricing structure that fits your local market. Most of our offices offer two different programs. One is a non-MLS, Direct-To-Buyer®. The other program is our "MLS for Less"® program at a commission considerably lower than the competition.
Q. Do sellers pay the commission up-front?
A. While our franchise owners set their own fees and determine what they will offer, none charge up-front fees. They follow our belief that you should only get paid for results. If you take money from a home seller and don't sell their home, they tend to think poorly of you. We have enough confidence in our program to be willing to be paid only if we sell the home.
Q. How can you afford to charge less and still succeed?
A. Volume. Sounds simple, and it is. While most real estate companies are looking for ways to charge more and to provide less to home sellers, we take the opposite viewpoint. We know that by charging less and by doing more, we can be more successful. We call it "Results with Savings!"® When you think about it, how do other real estate companies justify such high commission?
Q. What about the other agents; will they show Assist-2-Sell listings?
A. Yes. Keep in mind many of our listings are MLS listings. We don't ask cooperating agents to work for a discounted commission. We recommend offering the same cooperating commission that is common in your area. The discount is taken on the listing side. On non-MLS listings, we show you how to work with other agents.
Q. Why shouldn't I just open my own discount company?
A. Certainly, this is the first thought just about everyone has. The concept on the surface seems simple enough. You need to ask yourself how much will it cost in time and money while trying to figure out how to make it work. Compare this with our low franchise fee and reasonable royalty. One mistake could easily cost more than the cost of a franchise. Why re-invent the wheel? We have over a 20-year head start, and we offer you the benefit of not only our experiences (both successful and not), but also the experiences of all our franchise owners around the country. The sharing of information between all offices is very valuable. You will learn what works, and more importantly, what doesn't. In addition, we are constantly changing and improving our systems. Would you rather compete with a local Assist-2-Sell office or own the local Assist-2-Sell office?
Q. How do you pay your agents?
A. The traditional formulas don't work. We spent years, and a lot of money overpaying, before we worked out a compensation program that was both fair and equitable. We of course share this confidential information with you as part of the training.
Q. How does Assist-2-Sell compare to other franchises?
A. Most other franchises offer the same old traditional concepts as far as the public is concerned. They just have different names and perhaps different compensation plans for the agents. The Assist-2-Sell concept offers something different and appealing to the consumers.
Q. Are lower commissions really the future of real estate?
A. Look around at other industries. Are fees going up or down? The best comparison may be the stock brokerage industry. Charles Schwab went from being a controversial "thorn in the side" company to #1. Keep in mind that we are constantly changing and improving our system in response to the marketplace. What we do today will change considerably as technology such as the Internet becomes more consumer friendly. We see our role as one of not only offering practical solutions for today, but development of new solutions for the changes we all face. We believe Assist-2-Sell is ideally positioned to benefit most from the differences the future will undoubtedly bring.
Q. Are you looking for small or big offices?
A. Both. While most of our franchisees are offices of 5-10 people, including support staff, there is nothing to preclude larger offices from converting to Assist-2-Sell. Some offices are just a couple people. Our larger franchise offices have 15-25 people.
Q. Do we buy signs and things from you?
A. No. We provide you with information on suppliers that we work with. We are set up with all of the major vendors. You can choose to buy from them or use vendors of your choice. You will usually find our approved vendors offer very competitive pricing.
Q. I’m afraid someone else will get the area I want first. What can I do?
A. Move fast! Seriously, while there are many great areas still available, they are going quickly. Once your application is approved, we will have the franchise agreement prepared. You can sign the agreement and send your check. You have six months to attend training and open the business.
Q. Do I have to attend training before I can open an office?
A. Yes. Our training program is very comprehensive.
Q. What is the next step?
A. Call some of our franchise owners to hear first hand about what is like to be involved with us. Also, feel free to call us at 1-800-528-7816 when you have more questions or you are ready to proceed.
The list of questions could go on and on so we'll stop here for now. Hopefully we anticipated and answered most of your questions. If you have others, just give us a call at 1-800-528-7816 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also visit our web site at www.assist2sell.com.