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Should You Buy A Plumbing Franchise? (Or Will Owning One ‘Drain’ Your Bank Account?)

plumbing franchise employee

Me? Own a plumbing franchise? C’mon, Joel.”

I’m serious. Dead serious. There’s an opportunity here. A huge one. But only for the right person.

And that’s what this post is about.

It’s Easy To Find Reliable Plumbers. Or Is It?

Can you find a good, reliable plumber in less than 2 minutes?

(This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy).

If you can, great. Lucky you.

But for the rest of us, especially if it’s a stinky toilet issue, it’s quite challenging. Not all the time, but a lot of the time. And going to Google to find a plumber, or a plumbing business, doesn’t always cut it. Why?

(Example ad for “find a plumber“)

find a plumber

Because the top results shown are usually purchased by non-local websites that local plumbers pay a lot of money to in order to be listed on. Like the online ad above. Why?

Because, for mom-and pop plumbing companies, it’s the only way they can afford to be on Google.

But if you’re the local owner (franchisee) of a plumbing franchise…one with a knowledgeable online marketing person, you do have an opportunity to get on top of Google’s search results. But wait, there’s more.

A Serious Shortage Plumbers

The other reason why it’s challenging to find a plumber is because there aren’t a lot of people who want to be plumbers. And that’s too bad, because there’s a shitload ton of money to be made.

Some Stats

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for plumbers is expected to grow by 14% from 2018 to 2028. But here’s the problem.

There aren’t enough plumbers. Why?

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An aging workforce.

From the folks at Evans Plumbing in Boise, Idaho:

Many plumbers are nearing retirement age, and there are not enough new workers to replace them. In fact, the National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA) estimates that 60,000 plumbers retire each year, and there are only 30,000 new apprentices entering the field annually.”

For instance, how many graduating high school seniors do you know who are interested in becoming plumbers? Or who want to own a plumbing business? Exactly.

Maybe these kids just need a little encouragement.

Like the kind they’d get by reading this from CNBC.

Could This Be The Right Time To Own A Plumbing Franchise?

I think it is. Why?

For one, the demand is there.

Secondly, supplying plumbing services seems to be a high-margin business.

For example, you can markup the materials. And you can charge high labor prices. Like $50+ an hour. Could that be the reason plumbing franchise opportunities are starting to appear?

That said, there’s a downside, and it’s a big one.


As in, a real shortage of it.

So unless there’s an increase in interest to be a plumber, plumbing franchise owners could end up in the never-ending loop of;

  • Recruiting
  • Hiring
  • Training
  • Disciplining
  • Firing

Until the end of time.

Of course a lot of businesses are experiencing the same thing.

But that doesn’t make owning and managing a service-based business like a plumbing franchise any easier. But the upside?

A huge need exists.

And not only in residential plumbing services.

Commercial plumbing services are needed, too. Always.

How Much Are Plumbing Franchises?

Today’s plumbing franchise opportunities have total upfront investments ranging from $100,000 or so, to $400,000 or more.

With that in mind, here are 3 franchise opportunities in the plumbing business space that have caught my eye.

Z Plumberz

Z Plumberz is a plumbing franchise opportunity with a strange name. 

The company, part of the Belfor Group, put together a nice video about their plumbing franchise opportunity. You should watch it. 

As to your initial startup costs for this plumbing franchise opportunity, it will range from $232,670 to $390,210. The franchise fee is $44,900.

Benjamin Franklin Plumbing

You don’t need to be a plumber to start a Benjamin Franklin Plumbing franchise. 

That’s because according to their franchise website, “We’re ready to make sure you’re trained and equipped to hit the ground. Your success is our success, and our operating system helps ensure that we both experience it!”

Cost-wise, your initial investment will range from $128,954 – $223,738. And your upfront franchise fee is $43,000.

For the details, check out the Benjamin Franklin Plumbing franchise .


RooterMan is a plumbing franchise that’s been providing plumbing-related services for over 40 years.

The company has a whopping 750 franchise locations, and according to their franchise opportunity website, “Is a trusted national brand you can use to take your plumbing business to the next level.”

If you’d like to own a Rooterman franchise in your area, you’ll need to invest anywhere from $45-$85k upfront, including the franchise fee. 

And in addition to their low cost, they have a flat fee royalty structure. 

That means the royalties you’ll owe to the company are based on the population of your territory, as opposed to paying a percentage of your monthly business revenue. 

Go to the RooterMan plumbing franchise opportunity website to learn more. 

Are You The Right Fit For A Plumbing Franchise Business?

Owning a plumbing franchise requires several specific attributes that contribute to success:

  • Strong organizational skills. They’re essential for managing complex plumbing projects.
  • A proven ability to recruit, lead and manage teams.
  • Excellent customer service skills. It fosters trust and loyalty among customers.
  • A people-oriented nature and effective communication skills are vital for engaging with customers.
  • A focus on managing expenses.

Should You Buy A Plumbing Franchise?

plumbing franchise opportunity owner

While plumbing may not be considered the most glamorous industry, its business potential can’t be understated. Why?

Because plumbing is an essential service, and people and businesses will always need plumbing repairs and installations.

That fact alone ensures a consistent demand for plumbing services, even during economic downturns.

Additionally, successful plumbing franchise businesses have the potential to provide a decent amount of financial security for you and your family.

Translation: a steady stream of clients can help you plan for your future with confidence.*

*There are no guarantees, though. Always have money set aside for unpredictable events. Can you think of any recent ones?

To Conclude

In conclusion, while owning a plumbing franchise business has the real potential to be financially rewarding, it does come with some challenges.

The biggest challenge, is, and will continue to be, finding employees. In this case, plumbers.

And if I were to pursue a plumbing franchise opportunity myself, that would be the thing that stopped me.

But the profit potential…

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joel libava

I'm The Franchise King®, Joel Libava. I help prospective franchise owners avoid bank account emptying mistakes. For over 20 years, I’ve been showing people how to make smart, informed decisions on franchises to buy, and I can help you, too!
P.S. I'm not a franchise consultant/broker.

“I've been a fan of Joel's for years. He's picked a niche and made himself the undisputed expert. I'd recommend him to anyone looking to start a franchise. "
- Gene Marks, Business Expert, Keynote Speaker
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