Two experienced business owners and a Navy veteran join home inspection franchise.
WIN Strategic-Partners come from a wide variety of backgrounds. Some have owned their own business; others have always wanted to be self-employed. More than 25% of WIN franchisees are military veterans, and all of them enjoy the freedom and financial stability of owning their own home inspection business.
Three WIN Strategic-Partners shared their stories of how they selected the WIN Home Inspection franchise.
Jamie Green — Crown Point, Indiana
Jamie Green bought an existing WIN Home Inspection franchise with a 12-year history of success in 2013. Buying the franchise, he says, wasn’t just a good opportunity. It was a great one.
His story highlights one of the best kept secrets of owning a WIN business. It is often possible to buy an existing WIN franchise that already has close relationships with Realtors who provide business referrals and an established record of profitability.
After selling his property management business in 2013, Jamie learned the WIN Home Inspection business in Crown Point, Indiana, was for sale. He met Charlie Yates, the longtime owner of the Crown Point franchise.
WIN’s extensive training and support network helped convince Jamie that joining WIN was a smart decision. Not only did Jamie have backup from the corporate staff, Charlie was willing to help train and mentor him for as long as it took.
“There was definitely a transition period where I had to get up to snuff,” Jamie says. “One of the great things about WIN is how supportive everyone is of one another. Charlie was extremely helpful. He walked me through the home inspection process in a very systematic way. Tim Chesna, a Strategic-Partner with nearby territories, has also been a big help. I call him several times a week.”
“Everyone at the home office in Alabama was also extremely supportive. Maybe I could have gotten in with other franchises for cheaper, but it would have taken me years to get it to the point where this business already is.”
David Schalm — Dayton, Ohio
David Schalm joined WIN in 2014 after retiring from the Navy. He knew that he wanted a change and a new challenge, and owning his own business was the best way to meet those personal goals. Today he is a WIN Strategic-Partner in Dayton, Ohio.
As a veteran, David qualified for a reduced franchise fee under the WIN for America program. In 2012, WIN pledged more than $1.2 million to the program to assist veterans. Today more than 25% of WIN owners are veterans, and that number is growing. WIN for America offers Gold and Silver level awards, which reduce the franchise fee by 50% and 25%, respectively.
“I began discussions with WIN (through the WIN discovery process) and it did not take long to see that WIN had very similar values to me, including a commitment to superb customer service and a high degree of integrity. The fact that WIN provided a reduced franchise fee for veterans was a welcome benefit,” says David.
David considered opening his own, unfranchised, home inspection business but quickly decided to join WIN.
“My decision to go with WIN was primarily because I felt I would have a better chance for success,” says David, who is especially appreciative of the marketing training he received during the initial Strategic-Partner training.
“This gave me the confidence to effectively market my business. I also like that they’ve provided me with a very clear marketing roadmap so that I don’t have to re-invent the wheel,” he says.
Justin Kirkbride — Hamilton, Montana
Justin Kirkbride, the new WIN Strategic-Partner in Hamilton, Montana, is used to being his own boss and setting his own goals. His previous successes include working as a licensed Realtor and starting a company that manufactures devices that make diesel engines run cleaner. After selling that business, he joined WIN Home Inspection.
Justin, who is the first WIN business owner in Montana, is already making plans to expand and become the owner of multiple territories.
“My plan is to expand. For the first three to five years, I’ll stay in my current marketing area, then grow in other cities. Realistically, I see the possibility of three franchises in Montana. When I achieve that, my plan is to take on more of an executive role. I’ll do the marketing and scheduling, and my employees will do the inspections,” he says.
Being affiliated with WIN gives him an advantage over competitors who can’t match WIN’s professionalism and high-tech equipment, says Justin. “When I arrive in my WIN-branded vehicle and wearing a company uniform, customers notice, and appreciate, the difference.”
WIN’s technology helps him stand out from competitors.
“One thing customers notice and appreciate is the modern equipment, like the radon detector. I call it the ‘gizmo.’ It connects with a computer and checks the levels every hour. Very impressive. If you don’t have it, you’re like everyone else.
“The technology isn’t cheap, but to build your business and stand out, you have to provide a level of service beyond your customers’ expectations or you’re just like the next guy,” says Justin. “I’ve invested $30,000 in my business and charge $300 and up for inspections, so my ROI is attractive.”