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How to Own a Franchise Restaurant

Become a Part of the IHOP Franchise Family

Considering owning a franchise, but have questions? This page will guide you through the process of becoming a franchise owner, including tips on what to expect along the way. Briefly learn the history and reasons to purchase a franchise, advantages of ownership, and how IHOP works with our franchisees. You’ll discover how to own multiple franchises, read success stories, requirements, and some legal matters to be aware of.

Whether you're a first-time franchise owner or an experienced entrepreneur, this guide should provide the answers you need to make informed decisions for those looking to own a franchise.

If you’re interested in inquiring about becoming a franchisee, fill out our franchising inquiry form to get started and connect with a representative. We’re here to support you and answer all of your important questions. Get more information now!

Understanding Franchise Ownership - A Guide by IHOP

Opening a new restaurant business often involves multiple factors, and sometimes mixed emotions. Some of them are positive, and some of them are negative. What’s important is to understand your options and think about if you want to start from the very beginning or if you want to franchise with a brand with an excellent reputation, like IHOP. With this guide to understanding franchise ownership, you will learn about processes and requirements specific to IHOP, and be better informed in making this decision.

Owning a Franchise - The Benefit

There are multiple benefits of owning a franchise. Top franchised brands generally enjoy high brand recognition, resulting in increased customer loyalty and repeat business for franchisees. This consistent revenue stream contributes to a stable financial position and positive cash flow for franchise owners over an extended period.

In addition, owning a franchise provides the reassurance of being part of a larger organization, with all efforts contributing to a shared purpose. Furthermore, franchise ownership is ideal for fostering networking opportunities and social advantages. It presents an excellent opportunity for new entrepreneurs to establish relationships within their local community.

Franchise Ownership: Advantages You Should Consider

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Professional training and support: As a franchisee, you will receive comprehensive training to help ensure your business runs smoothly. Additionally, ongoing support from the franchisor is available to help you succeed.

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Join a well-known brand: Owning a franchise offers the chance to be a part of an established, reputable brand with a proven track record.

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Affordable investment: Compared to starting a business from scratch, investing in a franchise is often more manageable, with upfront costs that are typically easier to understand.

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Access to an existing customer base: Franchisees have access to an established customer base, providing a foundation for building and expanding the business.

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Ease of transfer: If you plan to sell your franchise in the future, you can sell it more quickly than other business types.

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IHOP Franchise Advantages

Owning an IHOP franchise comes with the following benefits:

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Corporate Support IHOP provides franchisees with various resources to support their operations, including menu development and assistance with store operations.

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Brand Recognition IHOP is a highly recognized restaurant brand across the United States and worldwide. This recognition provides franchisees with a recognizable name to promote and market.

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Marketing Support IHOP provides franchisees access to practical marketing programs that help them promote their restaurants and attract customers.

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Financing Assistance IHOP offers financial assistance for qualifying franchisees interested in purchasing a franchise. This assistance includes working with third-party lenders to help secure financing.

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Training and Support IHOP offers a comprehensive training program to help franchisees with access to sophisticated marketing programs to help them promote their restaurants and attract customers.

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Established Menu With a well-established menu, franchisees can tap into a local customer base familiar with IHOP restaurants’ offerings and benefit from ongoing culinary innovation.

Expanding Your Business: Maximizing Growth With Multi-Franchise Ownership

For entrepreneurs seeking to grow their businesses, multi-franchise ownership is an attractive option that can offer several benefits. By owning multiple franchises, you can take advantage of economies of scale, shared resources, and additional revenue streams.

The Benefits of Owning Multiple IHOP Franchises

Multi-franchise ownership with IHOP provides financial security, scalability, and the potential for business growth. By leveraging the established brand recognition of IHOP, you can improve marketability and attract loyal customers across multiple locations.

However, before pursuing multi-franchise ownership, conducting thorough research on each franchise is crucial and ensuring they align with your overall business plan. You must also be aware of legal or regulatory restrictions and comply fully with franchisor agreements.

Criteria for Multi-Franchise Ownership With IHOP

Adequate financing and capital, low overhead costs, solid business acumen, and franchising fundamentals are essential for successful multi-franchise ownership with any franchise, including IHOP.

Managing multiple franchises can be complicated, so having the necessary skills to manage teams, budgets, and expectations in each location is crucial.

With the right strategy and approach, owning and operating multiple IHOP franchises can maximize profits allowing you to take your business to the next level.

Owning a Franchise: Requirements, Risks and Rewards

Franchise ownership can be an exciting opportunity for entrepreneurs, but it’s crucial to understand the financial and legal requirements and the risks and rewards involved.

Before becoming a franchisee, franchisors may require a legal agreement that outlines the owner’s rights and obligations. It’s essential to consult with an experienced attorney before signing contracts to ensure complete comprehension of the agreement’s terms and conditions.

Prospective franchisees must also have the capital to cover the initial purchase costs, operational expenses, and any unexpected costs (which can range up to millions of dollars), depending on the franchise type. They also need business intelligence to assess the potential investment’s profitability, considering factors such as competition, industry regulations, and the cost of goods or services.

Checklist for Success

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Develop and nurture a strong brand

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Create a robust business model

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Follow transparent processes and systems

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Provide Comprehensive Training

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Offer Ongoing Support

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Establish Effective Marketing Strategies

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Develop a Strong Franchisee Network

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Monitor Performance and Provide Feedback

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Create a Business Plan - The Winning Way

If you’re interested in owning a franchise, starting by thoroughly researching potential opportunities and developing an extensive business plan outlining your goals, strategies, and objectives is essential.

Your business plan should consider important factors such as the demographics of your current and potential customer base and key financial projections, including projected sales, profits, and investment capital. Understanding the legal requirements for owning a franchise in your chosen area is also essential.

Once you have a solid plan, you must start securing funding and attracting investors who share your vision.

The Most Important Document: Franchise Agreement

One of the most critical documents for franchise owners is the Franchise Agreement, which sets out the commitments and rights of both parties involved in the business relationship. The agreement typically specifies details such as franchise fees paid to the franchisor, franchise terms, quality standards that franchisees need to follow, and operational restrictions. Additional provisions may surround customer referrals, royalty fees, and trademark licenses.

Before signing the agreement, you should understand your franchisee rights and obtain legal counsel.

What To Choose: Franchise or Corporate Ownership

Choosing between franchise and corporate ownership requires understanding the differences between the two models.

While owning a corporate business may offer more freedom regarding operations and pricing, owning a franchise comes with certain obligations that must be followed (as outlined in the franchise agreement).

The benefits of franchise ownership include access to comprehensive business training, franchisor marketing support, and a well-established customer base.

Expand Your Business Across Borders: Global Franchising

Expanding your business globally through franchising can be lucrative, but it requires careful planning and research. Companies interested in global franchising typically have specific requirements such as capital investment, business and retail experience, and product or service training. In exchange, though, franchisors offer access to trademarks, marketing materials, and licensed products.

For a successful global venture, potential franchisees should research the parent company, create a solid business plan, develop market entry strategies to fit with the franchise’s location and have adequate funding.

Your global franchise can begin if these steps are followed and agreed upon with the franchisor.


What is the initial investment required to own a franchise?

The initial investment required to own a franchise can vary greatly depending on the franchise type and the franchisor’s specific requirements. It’s essential to thoroughly research and understand financial obligations before committing.

What ongoing fees can I expect to pay as a franchisee?

In addition to the initial investment, most franchise agreements include continuing fees such as royalties, advertising, and other charges. Understanding and factoring these fees into your financial projections before committing is important.

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Do You Want to Know More About Franchising With IHOP?

With all that information considered, we hope you’re interested in franchising with IHOP. We have a dedicated Franchise Development Department that can assist with questions you may have concerning a franchise agreement with IHOP.