How to Get a McDonald’s Franchise

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By Dzhingarov

McDonald’s franchises can be acquired in several ways, but the most popular way is to purchase an existing restaurant. This requires a significant financial commitment but could prove highly profitable over time.

McDonald’s operates a heavily franchised model, where most restaurants are owned by franchisees and branded under the McDonald’s brand. This strategy permits the fast-food giant to expand distribution and maintain control over its lands.

How to get a McDonald’s franchise

If you’re thinking about opening a McDonald’s franchise, it is essential to understand the requirements and costs involved with starting one. Additionally, consulting with a lawyer and business consultant can help guarantee everything runs smoothly.

McDonald’s has long relied on franchising to fuel its expansion, enabling franchisees to open their own stores. Today, most of McDonald’s restaurant units are owned by franchisees rather than McDonald’s itself.

To become a McDonald’s franchisee, you must pass through an application process that includes background checks and an interview panel. After passing this stage, you will be invited to pay the franchise fee and sign a contract granting you the rights to operate a McDonald’s franchise.

Before opening a franchise, you will need to invest money in equipment and supplies. Total startup costs for a new franchise could reach as high as $1.8 million; however, loans may be available to cover these expenses.

McDonald’s charges a $45,000 franchise fee and an ongoing service fee of 4% of your gross sales, in addition to rent which is calculated as a percentage of monthly revenue, and advertising expenses which average around 4% of sales.

Be prepared to manage day-to-day operations at your restaurant, which can be demanding and time consuming. However, the company provides extensive training and support for franchisees.

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Many business owners find the financial rewards to be enough of a motivation to justify the time commitment. On average, McDonald’s franchisees earn over $150,000 annually.

As a McDonald’s franchisee, you can count on receiving ongoing support from corporate headquarters and field personnel. This may include marketing materials, operational guidance and professional development opportunities.

McDonald’s guidelines for operating your business and offering national specials and promotions must also be observed. For instance, if McDonald’s advertises a national special, you must honor the price and date advertised.

Investing in a franchise can be an excellent way to jumpstart your career and accumulate wealth. But it is often an intricate and lengthy process, so having adequate financial resources is essential for making the most of your investment.


If you’re thinking of opening a McDonald’s franchise, it is essential to be aware of the costs involved with this popular fast food restaurant. Opening one can be expensive and difficult due to high startup and operating expenses.

First, the franchisee must secure a location to operate their business from. This could involve leasing or buying real estate and negotiating rent terms.

Depending on the location and restaurant size, this could range anywhere from $1 million to $2 million. Once open for business, franchisees must invest money into operational expenses like equipment and supplies as well as food and beverage items.

In addition to these fixed expenses, a franchisee must also cover labor costs. This is especially relevant if they operate an efficient restaurant like McDonald’s.

Another factor that can influence profitability is the type of customer who visits the store. A fast-food eatery located in a busy area will generate more revenue than an establishment located in rural or less populated areas.

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Finally, franchisees must invest in advertising and marketing to promote their business. While this may be costly, it also serves to draw in customers.

McDonald’s franchises typically cost between $1,366,000 and $2,450,000 to open, including an initial $45,000 franchise fee and ongoing royalties.

The initial royalty fee for franchise agreements is 4% of gross sales, which falls below the industry standard of 4-5%. Furthermore, a marketing fee of 4% must also be included as part of the agreement.

Though this investment can be substantial, the franchisee will likely recoup their costs within a relatively short period of time. On average, McDonald’s franchise owners make $150,000 per location each year in profit.

Franchisees can expect to build up retirement funds over time if their locations remain profitable. Furthermore, franchisees have the opportunity to pass on ownership to their children through the company’s “Next Gen” program.

McDonald’s franchises can be an ideal solution for those who wish to start their own business but are uncertain where to begin. However, a substantial investment is necessary and many other factors that can determine its success.


McDonald’s franchises offer an unparalleled opportunity for those with the drive, financial resources and passion for running a business. This restaurant chain has earned itself an impeccable reputation and provides numerous training options that can help you become successful in your venture.

To become a McDonald’s franchisee, you must first apply and meet their personal and financial criteria. Following a phone interview and personality test, you may be required to spend three days at one of their franchised restaurants so they can assess your performance.

Another requirement for starting a restaurant is that you possess enough non-borrowed funds to cover the initial down payment and other associated costs.

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In addition to purchasing a franchise, you will need to hire employees and purchase supplies for the restaurant. These could include uniforms, furniture, kitchen equipment, and other essential items required to open up shop.

Before opening a McDonald’s restaurant, one of the most essential steps is hiring qualified personnel. Look for people with excellent customer service skills and an enthusiasm for food, as well as experience in this field. Finally, ensure your manager has knowledge of the restaurant industry.

Once you hire the ideal staff members, it is essential to invest time in training them on how to operate in a fast-food environment. Fortunately, your restaurant chain offers plenty of resources for training on operation – videos and manuals included!

Hamburger University offers a variety of training options, most of which can be completed on-site. However, you also have the option to learn from self-directed online classes or individual lessons in your store. Depending on your level of experience, the full program may take anywhere from nine to 24 months to complete depending on length.

Once you’ve finished your training, you are ready to open a franchise restaurant. Although the process is fairly straightforward, there are a few things you should know before signing on the dotted line.

You must make a down payment equal to 40 percent of the total cost of your franchise, or 25 percent for existing restaurants. This payment must come from non-borrowed personal resources such as cash on hand, securities, bonds and debentures; vested profit sharing (net of taxes); and business or real estate equity excluding your residence.