One of the greatest benefits to becoming a franchised driving instructor is that running a car is very expensive – the cost only multiplies when the car is used for driving instruction.
Including paying for the car, insurance, repairs and having to later purchase a new car due to wear and tear this can end up costing a fortune. Typically a franchise deal which includes a car will cost around £150-£200 – it’s basically a car lease with added benefits.
The lease will include advertising, scheduling benefits, all repairs required for the car and a supply of willing pupils. While the cost of the lease may seem like a lot, by the time you add up all the other costs and as will be explained later factor in the benefit of a steady supply of pupils it is actually much more financially beneficial to be part of a franchise.
Furthermore, being part of a franchise means you will always have a replacement car ready if one breaks down meaning you never have to miss lessons and lose out on money.
Another one of the main benefits to being part of a franchise is a steady supply of pupils. It’s not easy to get pupils, there are many driving instructors looking for work.
In order to get pupils you will need to advertise, but again effective advertising can be expensive. A small Yellow Pages Advert will cost £600 a year, and that is just one of the ways you may choose to advertise – it may also generate no work, lost amongst many small advertisements for instructors.
You could also advertise through a website, however usually those who appear high in Google search rankings are either paying for advertising or paying someone for what is called Search Engine Optimisation to manipulate their site in order to make them appear in the first page of search – this can also be costly.
Cost for lessons
It’s a sad fact that most pupils in choosing their driver will choose the cheapest or one with a special offer. However, as an independent driving instructor in order to make a decent living it can be near impossible to compete with the low prices of established or franchised instructors.
So, you choose to franchise. You pay £200 for a lease and charge £22 for lessons and have fuel costs of £150. You get between 40-50 hours of work per week meaning your turnover will be £880-£1100. After petrol and other costs you will net £530 to £750 per week.
However, independently in the beginning if you are lucky you generate 20 hours of work, you have had to cut your price to £20 per hour to compete or a special offer of 10 lessons for £100. Your turnover is much less at around £400 – leaving you £230 after running cost of fuel and car – this has actually cut your salary. Therefore from this example we see that it is what we take home that counts.
Whilst you are building a reputation a strategy involving a franchise may deliver the customers needed to achieve your financial targets easier than by working alone.
While it is not impossible to go it alone it seems to make much more sense and you will have greater support as part of a franchise.