The YMCA was established in the 1800s as a 501© (3) organization with the original mission to provide men with a safe space to participate in healthy activities. According to reports, George Williams, a 23-year-old draper founded the first YMCA in London on 6 June 1844 with the aim of “improving the spiritual conditions of young men engaged in the drapery, embroidery and other trades”.

At that point, the organization was only interested in putting into practice Christian principles by cultivating a healthy spirit, mind, and body. YMCA strives to instill a sense of direction and hope in the minds of industrial workers via prayer and Bible study.

Note that although the YMCA idea began among evangelicals, with time it moved to pass the stringent religious and social barriers that were well noted in England in those days. As time went on, these traits of openness attracted men, women, and children regardless of race, religion, and nationality to the new movement.

Have it in mind that YMCA now adopts a holistic approach to individual and social development comprising spiritual, intellectual, and physical methods. It has since grown into an organization that helps people from all walks of life.

Coupled with its community-building programs, the YMCA also boasts of very massive workout facilities, group fitness programs, and sports programs for people of all ages. However, note that the quality of the fitness centers can vary from one location to another, but a good number of YMCA locations are very wonderful places to work out and they have a decent selection of equipment.

Cost to Open a YMCA Franchise

There is no available information concerning the cost of opening a YMCA franchise mainly because the company only divulges this information to very serious candidates, after extensive discussions and deliberations.

Note that to buy a YMCA franchise, you will have to apply for a franchise directly on the YMCA website; only then will you be able to find out the cost of franchising with the company. Nonetheless, ensure you have at least $30,000 to pay for the franchise fee and all other additional investment costs.

Steps to Open a YMCA Franchise

Just as was noted above, to buy a YMCA franchise, you will have to apply for the franchise directly on the YMCA website. Nonetheless, if you are looking to work with YMCA, here are steps to consider;

  1. Reach out to as many people as possible

To ensure you make very valid decisions about YMCA, there is no better source of information than those who are already involved with the YMCA. Owing to that, it is recommended you reach out to franchisees before you come to any decision.

Although YMCA will provide you with an honest account of what you can expect as a franchisee, their approach will naturally be a little more sales driven, especially since they also want you to sign up with the franchise.

After you must have consulted or spoken to the team, conversing with existing franchisees is a very sure way of fact-checking what you were told and this also allows you to see the franchise opportunity from various perspectives. Note that every genuine franchisor will be more than willing to provide you with the contact details of their franchisees – anyone who doesn’t is likely to be hiding something.

  1. Work with legal and financial professionals

Franchising is a simple concept; however, the legal and financial frameworks used to support the business model can be quite complex and convoluted. Owing to that, potential franchisees with YMCA are advised to leverage the expertise of legal and financial professionals when starting on their franchising journey with YMCA. Unless you are trained and qualified in one of these fields, you will be taking a significant risk if you decide to go it alone.

Have it in mind that a lawyer or legal representative who has experience in the franchising sector can easily understand legal contracts, and also help you define the relationship between you and YMCA. Aside from that, an accountant will help you run over the numbers and establish whether your financial projections are accurate and reasonable.

  1. Put together a well-detailed business plan

This is one of the most important steps to take when buying into a YMCA. Note that to properly demonstrate to yourself and others that investing in a YMCA is financially viable, you must put together a properly researched and written business plan.

YMCA will help you create this document since they already have a great deal of experience. As the business plan will be used to apply for finance, it is recommended that you understand everything in it and also ensure it supports the proposed direction of your YMCA franchise.

  1. Consider your options when it comes to financing

It is important to consider how you intend to finance your franchise. In some cases, this decision will have to be made for you. More often than not, franchisees tend to depend on their family and friends to support them by topping up their resources. This can be a wonderful way to raise a little extra capital when the investment amount is just out of reach.