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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all

I signed up to the forum to get some useful technical help and am looking forward to that.

I did also sign up because I need some business help too. I run my own business and it is ok but over the course of the last few weeks I have been contacted by Mr Electric about buying a franchise. They have called me 3 or 4 times now and the man I spoke to was very nice and explained the franchise opportunity to me.

In short, you buy a franchise for a specific set of zip codes. In my case it would be approximately $30,000 or maybe more if I purchase a larger area. For that price I can obviously trade in that area but as part of the programme I get appropriate training for the business, which includes intensive training at their headquarters in Waco, Texas, ongoing support, job management system, my own area website, help with how to market the business, accounting software and advice as well as national accounts.

I have taken a look at this page http://www.leadingtheserviceindustry.com/Mr-Electric-LLC.aspx and the company website http://www.leadingtheserviceindustry.com/Mr-Electric-LLC.aspx.

All of the above seems useful and could add value to my business, however I am not 100% sure it will work out exactly like I have been told. The man who I spoke to seems fair enough but he does have an answer for my questions so far!

Does anyone have any experience with Mr Electric, not just their technical skills but the business opportunity and the franchise?

Also, if anyone has any advice on what to ask them regarding the franchise I would really appreciate it too?

I know this may have been discussed in the past but up to date thoughts would be helpful.

Thanks
 

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I have no experience with Mr. Electric but others have stated to stay away from them. I personally would never pay someone for that service.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Dennis I appreciate your comments but I'd really like to hear from people with direct experience of the franchise.
 

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If 30K was all you ever had to pay, it might be worth it. Like with any franchise, you're never done paying. You're still paying after they're done providing value.
 

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I cant speak to Mr. Electric's offer directly but as someone who knows about franchises, i will offer this advice.

Buying into a Franchise, best practice group, or coaching program is like buying a gym membership. The monetary expense is the least of your cost. Make you consider your time, drive, motivation, desire, etc.

For me, buying the p90x video series would be a waste of money...not because its a bad workout program but because I lack the drive, self control, and motivation to actually follow the program.

Most of these programs depend more on you than the quality of the material. In reality making money as an electrician is fairly simple...its just not easy. Just like having a beach body is a simple concept...its just not easy to execute.
 

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Hi all

I signed up to the forum to get some useful technical help and am looking forward to that.

I did also sign up because I need some business help too. I run my own business and it is ok but over the course of the last few weeks I have been contacted by Mr Electric about buying a franchise. They have called me 3 or 4 times now and the man I spoke to was very nice and explained the franchise opportunity to me.

In short, you buy a franchise for a specific set of zip codes. In my case it would be approximately $30,000 or maybe more if I purchase a larger area. For that price I can obviously trade in that area but as part of the programme I get appropriate training for the business, which includes intensive training at their headquarters in Waco, Texas, ongoing support, job management system, my own area website, help with how to market the business, accounting software and advice as well as national accounts.

I have taken a look at this page http://www.leadingtheserviceindustry.com/Mr-Electric-LLC.aspx and the company website http://www.leadingtheserviceindustry.com/Mr-Electric-LLC.aspx.

All of the above seems useful and could add value to my business, however I am not 100% sure it will work out exactly like I have been told. The man who I spoke to seems fair enough but he does have an answer for my questions so far!

Does anyone have any experience with Mr Electric, not just their technical skills but the business opportunity and the franchise?

Also, if anyone has any advice on what to ask them regarding the franchise I would really appreciate it too?

I know this may have been discussed in the past but up to date thoughts would be helpful.

Thanks
Welcome to the forum:thumbsup:

$30,000.00?

Buy your own website, you can do that here http://contractorrevolutionmedia.com

Come here and read the business section, you will learn much more there that anywhere else, and it's free.

When people call you looking for money, and sucker you into monthly payments, it's always a bad deal for you.

The challenge is to build your own business, not pay someone else to do it for you....save that money so you'll be able to pay someone to mow your huge lawn at your huge house....Good luck.

It's funny how NONE of those franchise guys are posting on forums.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for the replies everyone, there are certainly some alternatives to look into and while I am comfortable building my own business I thought it was worth asking opinions.

If the Mr Electric franchises don't post on here, that must also be another negative.

As for Waco, #weird!
 

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If you put in the same amount of work required to make your Mr Electric franchise successful as you would your own personal business you'd be just as successful without all the franchise fees.
 

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Long time ago in a galaxy far away, we were a Mr electric franchise. Best tuition money I ever spent. We gave up the franchise for several reasons, primarily I hate residential work.

But I learned a ton through them, and even more from other franchisees.

You will spend more money trying to figure it out on your own. When we signed on, they were the only game in town. These days you also have nexstar, esi, Mr sparky and who knows who else.

It's not for everyone, but it's got its merits.

These days we run mechanical/electrical in 9 states. Many who slag the franchises/affinity have always been, and will always be, 1-4 man shops. Nothing wrong with that. But if you want a 20, 30, 50 man shop, look at what the guys with those shops are doing. In residential service most are franchises or affinity group members.

As an aside, I'd look into Mr sparky or nexstar if that's a rouse you are considering. Dwyer group was bought by a capital company years back, it wasn't good for the franchisees.
 

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If you are even thinking about a trades franchise -- you might note that they are NOT taking off like McDonalds -- and that the franchisor is in NO position to help you secure materials -- something that is part and parcel of a McDonald's franchise.

Labor quality, talent, skill, persistence -- I don't think it fits the franchise model -- which is HUGELY linked to a commodity, item that is repeatedly purchased -- typically while travelling.

The original big franchises where gasoline stations. When you pulled into Texaco or Richland (both extinct, BTW) you knew the quality of gasoline, etc. for sale -- and their unified purchasing terms: cash or gasoline credit card.

Later, Ray Kroc mimicked that scheme -- leaving out the credit cards. He'd found in the McDonald's brothers a fast food joint that was hyper-competitive -- and located just off of a major transit route. (I-10 in Arizona, IIRC) All HE had to do was clone it.

Yet pumping gas / flipping burgers are TRIVIAL SKILL tasks.

Whereas, our trade is stuffed with variability and complexity -- closer to Hollywood talent than a bag boy.

&&&&&&

If you've got ANY business moxie then you know that you need to hang on to cash, and NOT obligate yourself to monthly payments.

(It can't be much of a surprise that just the new vehicle payments alone are enough to blow up many a budding EC. His rivals don't have such a 'nut.')

If you are interested in a fast boot up and have the finances: seriously look into buying out an existing EC that's on the cusp of retirement. The average age of most ECs is so high, that you've got many facing that situation.

The ideal situation is to buy into a firm with an established customer base, etc.

Four out of the last five ECs I worked for made this transition. Two were bona fide buy-outs. The other two were father to son's partnership buy-outs. The deal was a staged buy in -- and even then -- the sons needed to get partners and guarantors involved.

It's HARD for an EC to liquidate and get anything like full value.

He can't normally sell his firm to his own troops. They've got no risk money to put up at all. Most are great at the craft -- and zeros as businessmen.

So instead of trying to bust into the market -- buy the keys to it instead. It's how the big boys all operate. ALL of the biggest ECs have been through major ownership changes ... aka buyouts.
 

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..........Later, Ray Kroc mimicked that scheme -- leaving out the credit cards. He'd found in the McDonald's brothers a fast food joint that was hyper-competitive -- and located just off of a major transit route. (I-10 in Arizona, IIRC) All HE had to do was clone it.........

Actually, he found it near impossible to peddle a fast-food franchise. Given the low ROI and high failure rate of start-up eateries, most investors stayed far away from Roy and his golden arches.

What made him successful is when he started marketing it as a real estate investment.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
More useful comments, I'm glad I signed up here.

As for McDonalds comparisons, they seem fair to make but if Mr Electric are not going to be rigid and provide a platform of appropriate supplies and materials I should use like McDonalds, how do they maintain consistency in the same way that McDonalds do? Surely this is what franchising is about, a copy and paste scenario across the country like McDonalds, BK or Subway!

Buying into an existing business does seem a good idea but due diligence for that would seem even more critical than buying a franchise. Lots of careful consideration and checking. I'll definitely bare that in mind.

As for the ex Mr Electric who posted, thanks for a fair appraisal. So the learning is good, the support to grow into a more expansive shop is available but with the Dwyer Group owned by a capital company that could be very restrictive to my business I would assume?
 

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It's not like there's going to be 25 Mr. Electrics in your trade area. If there are, then stay away cuz they're not protecting your territory and certainly won't have your best interests in mind.

As for what other franchisees use for material it shouldn't matter. Listed is all you need to worry about.

Just find a brand you're happy with and stick with it. That way there will at least be some consistency in your work.

See..... you learn stuff for free here!
 

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Actually, he found it near impossible to peddle a fast-food franchise. Given the low ROI and high failure rate of start-up eateries, most investors stayed far away from Roy and his golden arches.

What made him successful is when he started marketing it as a real estate investment.
How so?

Ray Kroc KEPT the real estate underneath his franchise's restaurants.

It's the ONE thing that was excluded from a franchisee's assets.

He did sell a super master franchise for Southern California, IIRC, to really get rolling. He also had to entirely re-negotiate his original deal with the McDonald's brothers.

He sold himself to WALL STREET as a real estate play -- but that came quite a bit later, after McDonald's already a pretty big chimp on the block.:rolleyes:
 

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One of the keys for a McDonald's franchise, for an Ace Hardware franchise, for ... is that the master franchisor acts as a materials wholesaler -- at least price wise -- so the small guy ends up acquiring his stuff at 'big boy prices.'

Mr. Electric -- AFAIK -- does not do this -- and there is no expectation that they ever will.

That buying power edge works out to be HUGE for fast food joints as the ordinary prices charged to a small guy restaurant would make your eyes bulge out.

(I've seen the numbers from the inside, BTW.)

Mr. Electric is also no path to leverage.

This is normally HUGE to all other franchisees.

The oil companies, and the early era McDonald's let you walk into ownership with implicit extreme leverage.

If you were a good old boy, way back when, Texaco (now extinct) would let you 'own' a station for a trivial entry fee -- expecting to take their end by the volume of gasoline and oils sold. The operational leverage was astounding.

Mr. Electric does not have this feature.

Then there's the matter of marketing. I don't see where Mr. Electric has a big marketing footprint -- nor can it ever have one.

This means that it's not a franchise at all like the others.

It's at best a 'best practices' clan. Dang, you can get that straight from ET.C right now!

To get operational leverage, you need to buy out a going concern. THAT'S how the big money is made.

Starting up from scratch -- is a long road, as those here can testify.
 
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