Why now is a great time to buy into care franchises
Care franchises are one of the top investible franchise opportunities that are available currently within the UK. Since Covid-19 struck, the supply of care facilities and support across the country has declined significantly.
Why a sudden surge in demand for care?
There are many reasons why there has been a sudden surge in demand for care. For one, the UK is an ageing population. Within the next 50 years, estimates suggest that the UK will have a population of 8.9 million over 65, equivalent to the size of the current population of London.
Likewise, Covid-19 has caused significant problems across the industry. The first is the number of outbreaks in care homes. More families have looked at other care options, like carers visiting them at residences rather than care homes. Some smaller care homes have closed as a result.
Smaller care homes have also seen a rise in costs as PPE is required. The need for increased staff has also resulted in significant reductions in profits if not causing losses.
Does this mean care franchises are unprofitable?
While some of the care industry is struggling to make money, it isn’t all bad news for those looking at care franchises. In-home care can give customers and their families the support they need while also being a great business model.
You will probably require an office to run operations. In contrast to the costs of running a larger building 24-hours a day, like a care home, the expenses will be significantly lower.
You will also be able to employ carers to help you when you need it. If there are no customer appointments, you don’t need to pay staff. When running a residential care centre, there is always a need for carers to be on duty.
Therefore, care franchises can offer significant returns on your investment.
What about competition from other care providers?
There are numerous care providers across the UK. Within a local area, you could probably find several suppliers. However, there is significant demand at the moment. According to a recent report, there are now significantly fewer beds per 100 people for those over 85 than there were ten years ago.
You should note that there are different niches within the care industry, for example, specialist live-in carers. These are specialists who live 24 hours a day with those that they look after, offering respite care to a family member who cares for an individual.
Or you could offer disability care, helping those of any age who have specific needs to help them manage everyday tasks.
You might notice that in the local area there are lots of one type of care being offered, meaning there is a gap where your services are badly needed and under-resourced.
What do you need to operate one of the care franchises?
While there are currently no specific requirements required to run a care franchise, there are some skills that would make running one a lot smoother. For one, you should have a care background, ideally in a previous medical role, like nursing, midwifery or in care homes.
You should also have excellent knowledge of your local area. If you travel between homes, you will find it helpful to know most of the local routes. However, you will find that you will soon start to learn where places are around you, so your efficiency in this aspect should improve in time.
Finally, you should have good people management skills. You will need to operate a team of people within your business which could include people who help you run marketing, recruit carers for you or help with accounting.
What are the challenges when investing in care franchises?
While care franchises are an exciting investment opportunity and an excellent choice for many, there are challenges. The first is recruitment. Statistics show that in the UK, there are 110,000 care vacancies. This massive shortage of talent will become your problem so you will need to recruit carers regularly to help you reach your customers.
Retention will also be another problem. Most of those leaving a care business move to a different care provider rather than leave the sector. Two out of every three leavers are just switching brands mostly due to staff satisfaction. So you have to ensure your carers are happy.
Finally, you could face challenges in productivity because there is a lot of paperwork involved with all care vocations. There are ways to improve this such as by adopting digital technology. Care franchises can help with this and will provide everything you need to get started and run a successful care business, so speak to the franchisor when investing.
Also check out: What qualities you need to be a hands-on care franchisee?
If you are looking for franchise opportunities within the UK, then one of the care franchises is a great option. There is going to be an increase in demand over the next few decades as the population ages. A care franchise could yield good profits for you as well as provide enormous satisfaction that you are doing something that makes a real difference.