The Top 10 Franchises That Can Be Run Part-Time From Home or Through a Mobile Unit

Looking to start a franchise but have limited time? These options might just work for you.

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Entrepreneur Staff
Associate Editor, Contributed Content
4 min read

Entrepreneur has been ranking the top 500 franchises in America through six different decades now, using a five-pillar system that helps us evaluate the hundreds of entries we receive every year. Those five pillars are:

  1. Costs and fees, which includes aspects like the franchise fee, total investment and royalty fees.
  2. Size and growth. For example, how many open and operating units does a franchise have? What is the growth rate, and how often does the franchise experience unit closures?
  3. Support, focusing on training times, marketing support, operational support, franchisor infrastructure, financing availability and litigation.
  4. Brand strength. How far does the brand’s name go with your potential customers? What is its social media following, history in business and experience with franchising?
  5. Financial strength and stability, which centers on the franchisor’s audited financial statements.

These 10 businesses ranked at the top of our list among franchises that can be run part-time from home or through a mobile unit. Check out the slideshow to see if one of them might make sense for your lifestyle.

1. Jan-Pro Franchising Int'l. Inc.

  • Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 27
  • Started franchising: 1992
  • Total units: 10,118
  • Initial franchise fee: $2,520 to $44,000

Jan-Pro franchises offer commercial cleaning services for businesses and offers franchisees a variety of investment options. The company website states you can start a franchise with a minimum of $1,250 for a down payment and $900 for its starter kit, but depending on your ambitions, the plan could cost as much as $50,000.

2. Anago Cleaning Systems

  • Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 33
  • Started franchising: 1991
  • Total units: 1,711
  • Initial franchise fee: $5,015 to $31,000

Anago Cleaning Systems offers two options for its franchisees: a master franchisee who purchases an exclusive territory and sells unit franchises to individuals while securing cleaning contracts from local businesses, and the unit franchisees who operate the cleaning business as a low-cost, part-time-optional investment.

Related: 24 Top-Ranked, Affordable Franchises You Can Buy for $25,000 or Less

3. HomeVestors of America Inc.

  • Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 36
  • Started franchising: 1996
  • Total units: 1,122
  • Initial franchise fee: $32,000 to $70,000
Real-estate franchise HomeVestors of America has two ways in which to invest. You can buy a full franchise, which comes with marketing rights in a territory and an office location with a staff. The associate franchise option, though, comes in at $32,000 and can be run part-time from home.

4. Cruise Planners

  • Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 37
  • Started franchising: 1999
  • Total units: 3,151
  • Initial franchise fee: $695 to $10,995

Cruise Planners is a home-based travel agent network connected to American Express Travel Services. Its remote culture and software gives franchisees the ability to set their own schedules and run their business from anywhere.

Related: The Top 5 Franchises of 2021 From the Entrepreneur Franchise 500

5. Dream Vacations

  • Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 65
  • Started franchising: 1992
  • Total units: 1,553
  • Initial franchise fee: $495 to $9,800
Dream Vacations is a home-based travel agency franchise that is highly accessible due to a low initial fee, a six-day initial training period and a 1:10 ratio of support staff to franchisees.

6. Monster Tree Service

  • Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 71
  • Started franchising: 2012
  • Total units: 152
  • Initial franchise fee: $49,500

The Monster Tree Service franchise fee above addresses a single territory investment, which includes an exclusive, protected territory of at least 200,000 in population for tree- and plant-care services. It is a work-from-home franchise, but a yard or other storage area might be needed to store the vehicles and equipment or to meet your work crews.

Related: 5 Franchises You Can Buy for Less Than $18,000

7. Stratus Building Solutions

  • Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 75
  • Started franchising: 2006
  • Total units: 2,030
  • Initial franchise fee: $3,600 to $69,000
The unit option for commercial-cleaning franchise Stratus Building Solutions allows its franchisees to work from home or part-time on office buildings, shopping centers and more.

8. Snapology

  • Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 114
  • Started franchising: 2015
  • Total units: 155
  • Initial franchise fee: $24,900 to $67,500

The Snapology website describes the business model as a “low-cost, home-based franchise.” Franchisees offer a range of services for children, including STEM and robotics programs, pre-school classes and birthday parties.

Related: 24 Top-Ranked, Affordable Franchises You Can Buy for $25,000 or Less

9. STEM for Kids

  • Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 173
  • Started franchising: 2014
  • Total units: 122
  • Initial franchise fee: $39,500

STEM for Kids brings computer coding, bio-medicine, engineering, robotics and automation classes to pre-K, elementary and middle school children in a variety of ways. Although the company website says classes cannot be conducted at home, some programs can be delivered at approved sites like schools or faith-based centers.

Related: 5 Low-Cost Franchises You Can Start for as Little as $4,000

10. Destination Athlete LLC

  • Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 211
  • Started franchising: 2008
  • Total units: 151
  • Initial franchise fee: $20,000 to $50,000
Destination Athlete LLC offers a low-cost, home-based opportunity for those who want to be flexible with a part-time or full-time business. Franchisees serve their community by specializing in athletic equipment, apparel, fundraising and performance.
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