In years prior, shopping for a franchise opportunity often meant checking out locations for your franchise. With the economic recovery still a work in progress and home equity lines equally diminished by a sagging real estate market, prospective franchise owners have turned to home-based franchise opportunities to get into the franchise game without major overhead.
Resort Maps Franchise, Inc., creator of more than 100 customized travel maps across the United States, United Kingdom, Costa Rica and Puerto Rico, recently sold its 100th franchise. As an opportunity that enables its franchise owners to work from a home office and set their own schedule, Resort Maps has seen the home-based trend evolve with the current economy.
“We’ve had new franchise owners who in other years may have opted for a Dunkin Donuts or some other location-based opportunity,” said Peter Hans, president of Resort Maps Franchise, Inc. “While some of that might be a financial decision, a lot of it is about choosing a lifestyle. Our franchise owners work hard when they work, but it’s not a 24/7 grind like a lot of franchise opportunities.”
Gerry Pelissier, owns Resort Maps franchises in Dennis-Harwich, Massachusetts and Chatham-Orleans, Massachusetts on Cape Cod, represents one of the new faces. A former executive in the corporate world, Pelissier successfully franchised a drive-thru gourmet coffee business before selling it to Chock full o’Nuts. At age 50, he found the Resort Maps to be an appealing option.
“Back when I was 28 years old, I had the drive and the entrepreneurship in my blood,’’ said Pelissier, who was the founder of a double drive-thru gourmet coffee business that he successfully franchised and then sold to Chock full o’Nuts. “I just turned 50 this year and I said to myself, ‘Let’s not create a new wheel.’ There’s a lot less risk and stress without leasing or buying real estate.”
While lower overheads are one reason for home-based franchise opportunity’s rise in popularity, flexibility of hours is another. Because franchise owners are not anchored to a physical location and 9 to 5 schedule, they can create a schedule that fits their personal lives.
“Coincidentally, we’ve had several single parents purchase franchises over the past few years,” added Hans.
Jessica Grentner, a single parent, worked for her family’s hotel business in Florida that happened to be an advertiser on a Resort Map. Grentner saw Resort Maps as not only a way to own her own business but to create a better life for her daughter.
“Working in the hotel business and living in Florida was just not a good fit for me and raising my daughter,” said Grentner. “I had a sister in Breckenridge, so Colorado was at the top of my list. I started a Resort map in the Vail valley in 2007, then in January 2009 I purchased an existing, established map in Summit County. The move couldn’t have worked out better professionally and personally for me and my daughter.”
Resort Maps began creating and publishing maps in the northeastern U.S. back in 1986. In an effort to continue the company’s growth and simultaneously keep the quality of the product, Resort Maps became a franchisor in 1993. Since adopting the franchise model, Resort Maps has grown steadily to over100 maps distributed across 20 states as well as towns and cities in England, Puerto Rico & Costa Rica.
In 2010, Resort Maps will print and publish nearly 20 million maps. And besides travelers, more and more opportunity seekers are becoming fans of Resort Maps.
“Resort Maps is truly a unique and appealing franchise opportunity. It’s not a 9-to-5 gig, you don’t need to take out office space and you don’t necessarily have to work 12 months a year to run a successful franchise. You just have to be willing to work hard when you work,” said Hans. “With more and more people looking to escape the corporate world for an opportunity that gives them some freedom and flexibility and great earning potential, 150 maps is certainly a tangible goal as we attract more franchisees– hopefully one we can meet within the next couple of years.”
For more information on Resort Maps or to inquire about ownership of a Resort Maps franchise, please visit www.resortmaps.com or call 802-496-6277.
About Resort Maps
Headquartered in the Green Mountains of Vermont, Resort Maps has been creating and publishing advertising maps in the northeastern U.S. since 1986. In 1993, Resort Maps expanded its reach by creating a franchise model for distribution of its colorful, hand-drawn maps of resort towns and cities. Today, that network of franchises has grown to over 100 Resort Maps in publication in the US and the UK, with several more in the process of being published. Nearly 20 million Resort Maps will be printed and distributed in 2010.
For more information on Resort Maps and/or the franchise opportunity, visit www.resortmaps.com or call 802-496-6277.
Resort Maps franchises serve cities and towns in California (Carmel, Monterey), Colorado (Boulder, Breckenridge, Cherry Creek, Colorado Springs, Denver, Vail & Beaver Creek, Estes Park, Fort Collins, Summit County), Delaware (Bethany Beach, Rehoboth Beach), Florida (Clearwater Beach and Gulf Beaches, Cocoa Beach, Daytona Beach, Melbourne, New Smyrna Beach, St. Augustine, Tarpon Springs), Georgia (Savannah/Tybee Island), Maine (Bar Harbor/Acadia, Boothbay region, Camden-Rockland, Kennebunkport, Kittery, Portland, York-Ogunquit), , Maryland (Annapolis, Eastern Shore, Ocean City, Solomons Island, St. Mary’s County), Massachusetts (Berkshires, Chatham-Orleans, Eastham-Wellfleet, Falmouth, Hyannis-Yarmouth, Martha’s Vineyard, Newburyport, Plymouth, Sturbridge, Worcester), Michigan (Traverse City, Northern Michigan), New Hampshire (Franconia/Notch Region, Hampton Beach, Hanover/Lebanon , Keene, Lakes Region, Mount Washington Valley, Portsmouth), New Jersey (Barnegat Bay, Cape May, Hoboken/Jersey City, Hunterdon, Lambertville , Long Beach Island, Ocean Grove, Point Pleasant, Princeton, Sandy Hook), New York (The North Fork, Lake George , Lake Placid, Saratoga Springs, The Hamptons,), North Carolina (Asheville, Brunswick County, Hendersonville , Outer Banks, Salisbury and Rowan County, Sandhills, Wilmington,), Pennsylvania (Bucks County, Chestnut Hill, Delaware River Valley, Gettysburg, Lehigh Valley, The Main Line), Rhode Island (Newport, Providence), South Carolina (Charleston, Hilton Head, Myrtle Beach), Tennessee (Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge), Vermont (Addison County/Brandon, Barre/Montpelier, Burlington, Killington/Rutland, Mad River Valley, Manchester, Mount Snow, Okemo, Smugglers’ Notch, Stowe, Waterbury/Richmond, Woodstock/Quechee) and Virginia (Northern Neck & Middle Peninsula) —as well as towns and cities in England (Chicester, Lewes) and Puerto Rico (Vieques, Culebra).