Long before becoming a franchisee, Sergio Nunez was committed to doing whatever it takes to provide for his family. After having done everything from washing dishes to making hotel beds, he decided that it would pay to have a well-known name backing his hard work. He found the right brand with ServiceMaster Restore. Just last month, he and his co-owner began servicing customers in Santa Fe, N.M.
Name: Sergio Nuñez
Franchise owned: ServiceMaster Restoration by Sinergia, in Santa Fe, N.M.
How long have you owned the franchise?
I’m a brand new ServiceMaster Restore franchisee, who began to serve clients in April 2014.
There are a lot of reasons, but the influential ones are the name, the branding, the support and the background that comes with a national franchise. I’d been in construction for years and in 2008, opened a local restoration company. Between the downturn in economy and the lack of branding, I lost all my money in a very short period of time. Recovering from that experience, I realized that to succeed, having a name and a respected brand is everything.
What were you doing before you became a franchise owner?
Over the last 15 years I’ve been in the construction business in Santa Fe and had up to 12 employees at one time. I also began a local restoration company, which didn’t work out, but by partnering with ServiceMaster and other national companies, I saw what it took to succeed. Over the years, I’ve done whatever it takes to survive and provide for my beautiful family, including washing dishes, delivering milk and making hotel beds. I’m a believer in very hard work and that God will lead you in the right direction.
Why did you choose this particular franchise?
Like I said, I researched other brands and was actually about to sign a franchise agreement, when something told me to look harder at ServiceMaster. I’m so glad I did because I now know ServiceMaster’s mission matches mine….”We Serve” is the company’s slogan. Serving God, appreciation and respect for employees and commitment to customer service aligns with my values and I believe that will contribute to my success.
How much would you estimate you spent before you were officially open for business?
Roughly $160,000, which included franchise fee, vehicle, equipment and office location set up.
Where did you get most of your advice/do most of your research?
Of course, I knew of and respected ServiceMaster from my previous experience, but after long online searches and tracking, it was really the person-to-person contact, on the phone and face-to-face, that convinced me. It was then that I felt the respect and the Godly values that are core to ServiceMaster.
What were the most unexpected challenges of opening your franchise?
The most unexpected challenges were the deep level of training required. I was away from home and my family for a total of about a month training at ServiceMaster’s headquarters in Memphis. All the certifications I had to obtain before opening were surprising but have really helped me grow as a person. I believe these things that were “unexpected challenges” will empower me to successfully lead ServiceMaster Restoration by Sinergia.
What advice do you have for individuals who want to own their own franchise?
Follow your dreams. Believe that God will lead you in the right direction and never ever, I repeat never ever ever, give up or lose faith.
What’s next for you and your business?
In April I opened the franchise with seven employees and my partner, Lorena Montez. My hope is to honor God in all that I do personally and as a business. I believe with this humble attitude, a servant’s heart, a thirst to learn, and ServiceMaster’s deep support and solid values, we will have a bright future to thrive in Santa Fe.