tricky home improvement projects

When it comes to some home improvement projects, there are some you should really just leave to the experts – even if you have some experience doing them, but aren’t licensed or insured. You may think you’re saving yourself a bundle in the short-term, but by attempting some of these house upgrades without the proper qualifications, you could be costing yourself a lot more down the road – not to mention potentially putting yourself (or others) in danger.

Electrical work. The results of trying to do this kind of work can be shocking – literally! Unless it’s something very simple, light changing a fuse or replacing a switch (even the latter could be tricky for some), then you should call on the experts. In fact, the Ontario Electrical Safety Code specifies you must only hire a licensed electrician, and that even a handyman must have an ECRA/ESA license. Remember, bad wiring jobs for new lighting or other purposes can cause a fire – and your home insurance company might not be too pleased to learn you caused it.
Demolition. Sometimes you need to get rid of the old stuff before you can start home improvements – or perhaps you’re looking to create that “open concept” look. Despite how fun it can be to swing a sledgehammer and break things, you don’t know what lurks behind walls – and you might not be sure if you’re dealing with a load-bearing wall. Smashing through old interiors can also potentially release asbestos and other substances that can be harmful to breathe – so leave this to a crew that knows what it’s doing.
Plumbing. Renovation ideas for small homes often involve some kind of plumbing upgrade, whether you’re installing a new toilet or building a new stand-alone shower. However, even if you think you’ve got the hang of piping, you should hire a licensed and insured plumber or you may get soaked – financially and literally.
Replacing Garage Doors. This one might seem a bit strange to some, but the truth is that there are components of a garage door – for example, the springs in a garage door system can cause serious injury – or worse. If you’re thinking of fixing or installing a new garage door (which is a house upgrade that can really boost your property’s curb appeal), hire a company that sells as well as installs them.
Installing roofing. Even if you’re comfortable climbing a tall ladder and walking around on an inclined surface 30-feet in the air, you still should leave roofing to qualified roofers. This is an important home improvement that not only make your home look better, but can protect its contents from water damage – so it needs to be done right. That means using the right tools, the right materials, and having the right knowledge about how to apply both.

expand your brand using other peoples money by using franchisor strategies

Back many years ago, I met a fellow franchisor, he’d built a nice company with 250 franchisees which operated Kiosks in shopping malls – you know those carts in malls that sell various wares. What he did was make each Kiosk its own business, at first as “independent contractors” but later as Franchisees due to the Franchise Law rules. Each franchisee had to sign a two-year franchise agreement with non-automatic renewal, where the Franchisor could merely take over the business, location, as he already had the lease-space agreement with the malls, including the corporations that owned many malls around the country.

After two years, he stopped renewing franchise agreements, took control of all those little businesses, and then sold the whole thing and retired a very wealthy man. Unfortunately, many of the independent contractors, turned into Franchisees were forced out after building up their businesses and providing a substantial amount of goodwill. The franchisor’s concept was built by the blood, sweat and tears of all those individuals, who did make decent money in the meantime, but were then basically terminated when their franchise agreement term ended.

Recently, there is an interesting company in the “Handy Man” sector which has a franchise agreement that states it may unilaterally buy back the franchisee’s business at any time after 2-years of operating. In the Franchisor’s option to purchase there is a mathematical formula for valuation of the Franchisee’s business that negate the value of any “goodwill” and allows the Franchisee to choose if he will see at “Fair Market Value” of assets (used equipment, office furniture) or twice the earnings before interest, taxes, and amortization (EBITA).

Why would a Franchise Buyer buy a franchise like that? I suppose there might be a few situations where it makes sense for instance, the Franchisee just needs a couple of years of income and believes they can build up a good “book” of business, and if it starts to go South, the Franchisor may buy him/her out and they can move on, less risk? But what if the Franchisor chooses not to buy and the business fails? What if the business succeeds wildly and the Franchisee is forced to sell-out a thriving and growing business?

If you think about it, it is a brilliant strategy for a Franchisor, have others build your business, take all the risks, and if they succeed, you terminate their franchise agreement instead of renewal, and if they fail, you simply let them fail, then sell that territory to a new franchisee, until one succeeds and then you just keep winning and building on the backs of others. As a franchisee buyer it may be wise to recognize such strategies and be weary of them, unless it serves your temporary purpose of a short term business and solid temporary cash flow based on your abilities and the Franchisor’s model. Think on this.m/access/