Frequently Asked Questions

A range of questions asked by people who would like to know more about whether a franchise business is right for them, about estate & lettings franchises & about the Belvoir Group and how it works with franchisees. We have divided these questions into sections below & included a helpful video for each answer.

General franchise questions

The dictionary definition is the provision of services by one person to another person under a contracted, franchise agreement with a set of terms therein which suits both parties.

The franchise offers support services for you to run a business. So you have to decide whether what they charge you to do that (it’s usually called a royalty or a management service fee) is worthwhile for what you’re getting.

Providing the person suitable and has the knowledge & attitude, anyone can.

We carefully select people when we a have a mutual understanding as to whether we think you’re going to be suitable or not to meet the standards we require and also to make your business succeed.

We couldn’t knowingly enter somebody into a business if we felt that they didn’t have the proper approach, attitude or finances to make that business work.

But, within those parameters, just about anybody can become a franchisee.

A good franchisee needs to understand the task in hand, take on board, the training that we provide and then use their drive, enthusiasm and knowledge to make that business work.

People have to be prepared to put their time and effort into it and to get involved with the training.

The great thing about a franchise is, if you misunderstand something or forget something, the whole franchise support system is there.

If you adhere to what we say, use your own knowledge, skill and attitude to drive your business forward, that’s maximizing your opportunity.

Take on board what you’ve been trained, understand as much about the sector as you can and the territory that you have, use your drive and enthusiasm to drive the business that you have forward.

And when there are growth opportunities such as acquisitions or buying the next territory or going into another service, look at it carefully and take it.

Providing the person suitable and has the knowledge & aptitude, anyone can.

We carefully select people when we a have a mutual understanding as to whether we think you’re going to be suitable or not to meet the standards we require and also to make your business succeed.

We couldn’t knowingly enter, enter somebody into a business if we felt that they didn’t have the proper approach or attitude or finances to make that business work.

But, within those parameters, just about anybody can become a franchisee.

The reason that we advertise ourselves as franchisors and how we explain what a franchise is, is that we have a set of support services, and brand standards.

Our job is those support services to ensure that the business can meet our standards. To this end, we provide training, legal support, compliance & audits, a business development manager and a team that is dedicated to your brand.

You can find out more about how we support franchisees on our support page.

You will have to adhere to the franchise agreement that you sign up to when you start. This will outline any financial responsibilities and standards that will help you maintain and build the brand. You will also have to undertake training & follow the Belvoir Method, a system of processes designed to keep you compliant & to help you grow your business.

There are always risks with running a business. What the Belvoir Group and any other good franchise seeks to do is to mitigate that risk much as possible so that you can operate your business with a degree of protection.

A Natwest survey from 2018 said that 20% of new independent businesses survived two years and 80% of franchise businesses survived two years. So there are statistics to show that using a good franchise brand support mitigate your risk.

We, when we recruit people into our business, we do not offer ‘cold starts’. That means when you join our business, you join with a going concern, a running, profitable business. This is just part of our method to maximise success & minimise risk but it can never remove all risk.

It can be but restrictions should be positive. By this, we mean that restrictions are there to ensure that everyone benefits.

The restrictions mainly revolve around the brand system & brand standards. Unity of systems and standards sold nationwide is important because, if we can ensure that everyone follows standards that enhance the brand, everyone wins.

Estate agency franchise questions

That depends on demographics. We usually have a minimum number of ‘chimney pots’ in an area that we feel works (40,000 to 50,000). This generally means that the rural territories are larger in area & the urban ones smaller.

Compliance is really important to our regulated industry because you can get into hot water if you aren’t compliant.

Franchising helps protect you against that. We provide you with the compliance methods to use & audit you every year to make sure you’re using them.

Each brand has their own brand standards. Ours are clearly set out in our manual. One of the considerations of acquiring an independent business is to refurbish up to the necessary brand standards that we have.

We allow time for transition as it helps with cashflow & to ensure that the reputation of the existing business is preserved. You can imagine that J S Smith has been the only estate agent that’s in town for 50 years, shutting it overnight and putting the brand outside the door is not the best marketing move you’ll ever make.

Our managed marketing team will help you do that and there is a very transition brand process to help you do that.

But you will have to transition over an agreed period of time to whatever the brand standards are and that cost is accounted into the business plan we put forward.

No. There are many very successful franchisees who had never been estate agents or letting agents before.

We provide intensive training to prepare you for the estate & lettings industry. You do need to have an aptitude for training and the willingness to undergo & take onboard the training.

We usually say it’ll take three months. The reason for that is we have four induction training courses a year.

Every single person who joins our franchise must attend the induction training course. It would be irresponsible for us to set people off running a business in our sector unless we train them.

That includes people who’ve been in our sector for years. We often get told “I’ve been an estate agent and I’ve been a letting agent for 20 years, do you you want me to be trained to buy this business?” The answer is yes.

We’ve met many of them at the end of our four-week intensive training course and they are always glad they attended and come away learning things they never knew.

Well, for the induction training, you need to learn all the methodology we use to go to market.

There’s also the franchise agreement you’re signing up to. We need to know that you’ve read it, understood it and so on.

We don’t just offer induction training, you’ll be provided with ongoing training to ensure you can meet the challenges of a dynamic market.

In order to provide the best information & consistency across all offices, we we have a dedicated, bespoke software a known as SME, which is the requirement for all franchisees to use.

It does cost to install and operate but it’s heavily subsidized by the Belvoir Group and is also supported and managed by us as well.

It’s also a tried and trusted means to help you to operate your business satisfactorily so that you can report back on progress to us and we can report back to you.

Belvoir Group franchise questions

We’re a very well known, well supported brand but look behind what you see on the surface. What’s important for your future is how you are supported (with regulation, marketing, licensing etc).

The Belvoir Group has all of the tools needed to operate in the property sector: good finance, good management, good support, honest endeavor to get the business done. And our franchise model is proven to be successful.

We believe our brand is supported by the best management team and our ambition is better than anybody else in our sector.

Franchising is very process driven. We have a proven method and we call it the Belvoir Method.

As this process has been proven to work across hundreds of businesses, we’d expect you to follow the process to get the best outcome.

Business development managers (often known as BDMs) are paid to help you grow your business. You’ll

Their job is to visit franchisees, ask them how they’re doing & what they’re doing it and suggest ways they can grow and improve.

You’ll have a dedicated business development manager who will help you in the business & who will attend all regional meetings & provide support & feedback.

We offer 42 different training modules for different pieces of and roles within the business. For example, in a lettings or estate agency business, there are valuers, lettings managers, viewers, office managers etc. We offer in-person training & via video-conferencing.

We don’t do ‘cold starts’ in the group, meaning that franchisees are encouraged to start with a business that is already running (that we will help them identify & acquire). The amount of capital you will require will be proportional to the cost of the business.

We do have excellent relationships with all national lenders (high-street banks, secondary lenders, challenger banks etc) & banks are pleased to work with people who are buying a franchise rather than buying & starting a business as franchisees will be using a successful model & will have a wide range of business support from us.

Within the brand you select, none.

We do have a number of brands but each have their own support team & particular area of focus.

With over 300 offices, our strength is in the depth of knowledge our franchisees have. We have a system of regular meetings with franchisees to enable them to share ideas. Many of our franchisees love working together & swapping ideas.


We prefer for you to be familiar with the processes & methodology of the business first but actively support franchisees that are looking to grow into other territories or by acquisition.

Whatever the size of your ambition, we have sales and letting franchise options to suit different circumstances and goals.

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Estate agent showing a house