I spend a lot of time talking with talented real estate professionals and entrepreneurs who are considering franchising. We talk about their questions, concerns, and fears. I enjoy getting to know each of these people, and understanding how NextHome might be the right franchise for their goals and them for ours.
Some are ready to leap into franchise ownership immediately, while others wait and watch from a distance before becoming a part of our NextHome family.
When I think of the magnitude of franchising, it reminds me of buying my first home. In our personal lives, buying a home is the biggest investment many of us will ever make. We do our research and, with the help of a knowledgeable professional, we search for the home that fits our personal needs. However, knowing that a home ticks off every box on your list is only half the conversation. The time also has to be right.
The same can be said for starting a NextHome franchise.
To gain greater clarity on this conversation, we talked with two recent additions to the NextHome network: one who signed almost immediately after discovering us, and one who waited years to be next.
Ben Argall is a solutions-driven 30-something with an artist’s eye. As an unmarried entrepreneur, he has opened new markets for national brands, and he recently introduced NextHome Superior Living to Michigan’s upper peninsula. He reached out to us on November 30th, 2022 asking for more information. One month later, he signed the paperwork. On February 1st, 2023 (just two months after that first email) Ben officially opened his NextHome franchise.
Almas Abdullah is a mother and 20-year veteran of the Texas real estate industry. Almas and her sister, Shehnaz Sororfi, have worked side by side in real estate for more than 20 years.
NextHome and its people-first approach caught Almas’s eye in 2016, just as the company was gaining national attention. She reached out for more information, but the timing wasn’t right.
Seven years later, situations changed: 2022 was the right time to open NextHome Fine Properties in Sugar Land, Texas with Shehnaz by her side in brokerage leadership.
“Over the years, the real estate industry has changed,” Almas said. “Back in 2016, clients were less reliant on technology, big brand names were important, brick-and-mortar offices were mandatory, and my life circumstances were different. In 2022, I knew that what NextHome offered, my clients’ needs, and my personal timing had all aligned.”
Part of that alignment was due to NextHome offering kvCORE technology as an added member benefit. The addition was one important piece that Almas had been waiting for.
It wasn’t just the industry and technology changes that factored into Almas’s timing. She says she was not personally ready in 2016 to open her own brokerage.
“I was a different person in a different circumstance back then,” Almas said. “NextHome seemed to understand that. They were never pushy, but always clear about their value proposition. If I would have opened the brokerage back in 2016, it would not have done well. Things happen at the right time, and this was my right time.”
More than 1,500 miles to the north, Ben knew relatively quickly that NextHome had everything he wanted.
“As an independent brokerage, I was lacking robust, integrated systems – specifically training systems,” Ben said. “NextHome’s high-quality marketing also caught my attention. These were solutions I needed. When I find solutions, I make up my mind and act relatively quickly. That’s just who I am.”
Ben sent an inquiry email on November 30th, but followed up with a phone call the next day. With more detailed information in hand, Ben took the proposal to his CPA and his real estate coach for their advice.
“The math was eye-opening,” Ben said. “I was getting a lot of added benefit without drastically changing my bottom line.”
“I did write a few things down on a pro-con list when I was deciding,” Ben added. “But the pro side was getting so long, I just tossed the list and signed the papers.”
NextHome Superior Living officially launched February 1st – just 63 days after Ben sent his inquiry email.
“I am loving the training and camaraderie,” Ben said. “I am excited for the future of my business.”
Ben and Almas’s stories are significantly different, but both ended with two happy franchise owners. While both paths toward franchise ownership were different, both people embraced the timing that was right for their unique circumstances.
At the end of the day, each of us is a human who must balance professional pursuits with families, finances, and navigating long to-do lists in the same 24-hour day.
Before buying a home, most people take a careful look at their finances, they evaluate their family’s needs, and they consider any upcoming major life changes. Home buying is a very human experience.
The same can be said for franchising. Humans Over Houses is a philosophy that extends to our franchisees as well.
“I felt like I wasn’t a number,” Ben said of his first interactions with NextHome. “The CEO set up a video chat with me and shared his number. I got flowers in the mail after my grandma passed away. That was huge and eye opening. NextHome had the culture I wanted, and I knew that if we meshed well on those foundational business philosophy pieces, that everything else would fall into place.”
“This is a big commitment and you have to have time for this commitment,” Almas added. “There is a learning curve, and it’s important to consider if you have the time to commit to that. Do you have a support network, and financial reserves? Being both financially and mentally ready is important. There is always a right time for everything, and this was my right time.”
Is now the right time for you?