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Surveys show that Americans feel getting in shape is easiest with a gym membership. That’s the largest reason why there’s over thirty thousand gyms in the United States.

As such, entrepreneurs, who also have an interest in fitness, to consider franchising a fitness center.

Below are four things to be aware of before taking the leap of faith.

1) Expensive Launch

When franchising, the investor doesn’t just pay a percentage back to the corporation – they also face significant start-up costs. When it comes to opening a gym, estimates show a start-up price tag of as much as three-hundred thousand dollars. From equipment to insurance to rent for a space large enough to house lots of people and their exercise instruments, startup costs are steep.

However, location and gym brand play a role in the price.

Then, after getting past these expensive costs, the franchisee agrees to either pay back a flat, monthly rate – or a percentage of the revenue.

2) Location is Key

When it comes to having a successful gym, a convenient location that many people can access is critical. Because gym memberships can cost as much as fifty dollars a month, those who head to the gym want it to be close to either their home or their job.

To make sure a location is worthwhile, investors should head to Stats America to evaluate the location they have in mind.

3) It’s a Seasonal Business

Each year, Americans notoriously make their New Year’s Resolution to get in shape. This causes a huge uptick in memberships during January. Again, as the summer months creep up, many decide it’s time to get in shape for their upcoming beach trips. Because of the high fluctuation in busy and slow seasons, those opening up a fitness franchise need to make a plan to confront this issue. Usually, the ups and downs in attendance can shake out in the wash since standard gym memberships require a monthly payment for 12 months rather than a pay-as-you-go option, but it’s important to be patient and ride out lulls — they’re perfectly normal.

4) Corporate Plays a Role

Many corporations who allow for franchises will create strict guidelines when it comes to things like hiring and training employees. At the same time, they may even provide employees from nearby locations.

For entrepreneurs who desire autonomy, it’s worth noting that the corporate office of the franchise will act like a boss at times.

Closing Thoughts

Franchising a fitness center will always be a strong investment because there will always be people who want to get in shape. But that doesn’t mean it’s not a challenge, as high start-up costs and seasonal swings make it a complicated business. Entrepreneurs should address these issues before making the investment.