The 5 Top-Ranked Franchises You Can Buy for as Little as 5 Figures
These companies all rank in the top 21 of the Franchise 500.
Not all of us have a million dollars to spend on a franchise like McDonald’s or Taco Bell. However, that doesn’t mean we’re entirely out of luck on getting to run our own restaurant or business. We could try to apply to run a store like a Chick-fil-A (although in many ways, that’s more like being a restaurant manager than an owner) or set our sights on other, more affordable options.
This quick list of five franchises can, hopefully, give you the best of both worlds: top-ranked companies that can help you feel secure in your investment without breaking the bank.
Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 11
Started franchising: 1964
Total units: 66,689
Initial investment: $47,100 to $1.2 million
It’s no surprise that 7-Eleven has more franchises than anyone else in the Franchise 500, given that it’s the top-ranked company you can start for just five figures. The massive convenience chain has added more than 9,900 units in just the past three years.
2. Kumon Math & Reading Centers
Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 12
Started franchising: 1958
Total units: 26,278
Initial investment: $73,400 to $154,800
You might not be familiar with Kumon tutoring, due to its relatively small American presence, but the company has finished in the top 20 of our rankings each of the last three years. And while a 7-Eleven franchise can cost as much as $1.2 million, the high end of a Kumon franchise runs in the low six figures.
Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 13
Started franchising: 1948
Total units: 8,072
Initial investment: $93,600 to $401,800
Baskin-Robbins didn’t finish as highly in our rankings as its brand partner, Dunkin’ (No. 1), but the ice-cream franchise costs less and continues to grow, despite beginning its franchising in 1948.
4. HomeVestors of America
Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 19
Started franchising: 1996
Total units: 1,102
Initial investment: $56,000 to $426,300
Dallas-based HomeVestors of America began franchising in 1996 and has seen strong growth over the past six years, helping it to take home the top franchising spot in the 2020 real estate industry.
Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 21
Started franchising: 2013
Total units: 528
Initial investment: $55,400 to $236,250
Tech-repair company uBreakiFix only started franchising six years ago, but it’s shown incredible growth, going from 60 units in 2013 to 162 in 2015, 325 in 2017 and 528 in our 2019 count. Its minimum initial investment of $55,400 ranks as the second-lowest among these top-ranked franchises (behind 7-Eleven), as does its maximum startup cost of $236,250 (behind Kumon).