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Best Tutoring Franchise Opportunity in 2018, as chosen by an actual tutor
My method for choosing the best tutoring franchise
I work as a full-time, independent tutor. I have my own tutoring business, unaffiliated with any franchise or larger company. It’s taken me several years of hard work and experimentation, but my business is finally at a point where my schedule is filled and I’m making quite a nice living.
As a tutor and an independent business owner, I know the first and most important thing is money. If you run out of money, your business’s days are numbered. The second most important thing is quality of service. If you’re delivering a bad product, whether intentionally or not, you’re wasting your time and everyone else’s.
With that being said, here are my criteria for the best tutoring franchise
- Low upfront cost, or at least a lot of value for the money spent on upfront cost
- Lots of customers for selected franchisees, as measured by quantity of Yelp and Google reviews
- Happy customers for selected franchisees, as measured by rating in Yelp and Google reviews
Best In-Home Tutoring Franchise: N/A
I was not impressed by any of the in-home tutoring franchises I looked at. They were all expensive, and provided very little value for money. Furthermore, when I looked at the quantity of Yelp and Google reviews that my local franchisees had, I was unimpressed.
If you’d like to start an in-home tutoring business, you should not buy a tutoring franchise. Instead, you should start by following my guide to becoming a tutor, and go from there.
My review for Tutor Doctor and my review for ClubZ follow later.
Best Learning Center Franchise: Mathnasium franchise review
If you’re interested in a learning center franchise, I’d recommend Mathnasium. It’s not the cheapest, but I think they’re worth your investment. Here’s why.
The Mathnasium investment is expensive but worthwhile
A Mathnasium franchise is not cheap. You’ll be paying roughly $53,000 to Mathnasium’s parent company in your first year, and that’s before we account for royalties per student or expenses.
These expenses get you the right to the Mathnasium name and method, training in the method, and support for your business. Considering that Mathnasium advertises heavily on its method, this is a reasonable deal, as franchises go.
Mathnasium centers have a fair number of reviews, suggesting a fair number of customers
I live in Boston, Massachusetts. There are 2 Mathnasiums within 6 miles of me, with one more opening soon. This is more than I think is appropriate, but it is a densely populated area.
For comparison’s sake, my closest Starbucks has 277 reviews on Google. So, if that’s a fair comparison to make, Fresh Pond has about a 10th of the foot traffic of a Starbucks, and Newton has about a 20th. I would think Fresh Pond is likely doing quite well, and Newton is doing okay.
My only worry would be that they are somewhat close, and that they’re competing with one another. I would recommend that anyone interested in a Mathnasium franchise is careful that they’re not opening up one in a crowded area.
Mathnasium centers are highly rated, suggesting satisfied customers
Both Mathnasiums that are open near me have an average of 5 stars on Google and Yelp. Reading the reviews, the customers are clearly happy with their results.
Other learning center reviews
Using the same criteria, here are my other reviews.
Kumon franchise review. Should I buy a Kumon franchise?
To buy a Kumon franchise, you’ll have to pay around $20,000 to Kumon, and up to $20,000 to Kumon’s vendors. This gets you access to their materials and their name.
Not a bad deal, except Kumon is clearly oversaturated. There are 6 Kumon centers within 2 miles of me. None of theme have more than 2 reviews on Google.
If you buy a Kumon franchise, you will lose your money because there are way too many Kumon franchises.
Tutor Time franchise review. Should I buy a Tutor Time franchise?
You need to pay Tutor Time around $55,000 to open a Tutor Time franchise. It’s unclear what that gets you.
There are no Tutor Time franchises near me. As such, I searched in Connecticut, and found 4 in Connecticut. All have between 5 and 10 reviews on Google, suggesting that they’re doing okay.
The reviews for the franchises were so-so. It does not appear that Tutor Time can necessarily deliver a good service, which makes it a bad franchise to invest in.
Tutoring Club franchise review. Should I buy a Tutoring Club franchise?
You need to pay Tutoring Club around $50,000 to open a franchise. It is unclear what exactly that gets you, as the Tutoring Club website doesn’t offer much more than saying it gets you “support”.
There are no Tutoring Club franchises in Massachusetts. As such, I looked in Connecticut, where there are two. These two have 3 and 4 reviews on Google, respectively, which suggests that they do not have a lot of people visiting. It looks like Tutoring Club cannot guarantee a steady flow of customers.
Sylvan franchise review. Should I buy a Sylvan franchise?
You need to pay Sylvan around $26,000 before you start. It looks like that gets you access to their name and their “learning system”, which is some sort of educational software.
There are 3 Sylvan franchises within 10 miles of me. Of these, 2 franchises have 6 reviews on Google, and 1 has 0 reviews. All 3 have 0 reviews on Yelp. It looks like you won’t get many customers if you buy a Sylvan franchise.
Tutor Doctor review. Should I buy a Tutor Doctor franchise?
Short answer, no. No you should not buy a Tutor Doctor tutoring franchise. If you want to start an in-home tutoring business, then follow my free guide. Here’s why you shouldn’t buy a Tutor Doctor franchise.
A Tutor Doctor franchise is expensive, and does not provide value for money
You will have to pay $50,000 to Tutor Doctor to start a franchise. That is incredibly expensive, considering that you are working from home. All you get in return is 80 hours of training, “mentorship and networking”, and business software.
As an independent tutor, I can tell you that none of those are necessary. If you follow my guide, you’ll get better results for free than if you paid $50,000 to Tutor Doctor.
Tutor Doctor franchisees have very few customers
There are 4 Tutor Doctor franchisees within 50 miles of me. Of those, 3 have 0 reviews. 1 has 2 reviews, but has a defunct website.
It’s clear that Tutor Doctor franchisees do not get many, if any, customers. For comparison, I have 14 Google reviews.
Tutor Doctor franchisees are unhappy
I searched on Glassdoor for Tutor Doctor franchise owners. I found two reviews on Glassdoor, and both of them were 1 star. It is clear that Tutor Doctor franchisees are very unhappy.
ClubZ franchise review. Should I buy a ClubZ franchise?
Short answer, probably not. The ClubZ franchise cost is not little: $35,000 to $40,000 for an in-home tutoring business. You get slightly more for your dollar: they provide tutors as your employees, marketing materials, and training.
But you don’t need ClubZ for your marketing. You can do it yourself.
Furthermore, it doesn’t look like ClubZ franchisees get many customers. There are 3 ClubZ franchisees within 10 miles of me. Of those, one has 11 reviews, and two have 0 reviews. If you’re one of the unlucky two, you’ll be unhappy.