• Report: #747072

Complaint Review: Handyman Matters franchise

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  • Submitted: Wed, June 29, 2011
  • Updated: Fri, December 09, 2011

  • Reported By: Anonymous — Denver Alabama U.S.A.
Handyman Matters franchise
Denver, Colorado United States of America

Handyman Matters franchise Andy Bell, Handyman matters, handyman matters franchise Denver, Colorado

*Author of original report: Handyman Matters Franchise Owner Is Full of @!*#

*REBUTTAL Owner of company: Is it really that cold out there?

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I recently owned several Handyman Matters franchises.  I bought my franchises from 2 other owners who were struggling and wanted out.  I bought them for pennies on the dollar of what they spent buying the franchises.  When I purchased them, Handyman Matters charged little to nothing for "transfer fees".  After about a year and $110,000 spent, I realized that this business model has serious problems and that it does not work in cold-climate areas.  I decided to sell my territories.  I was directed by the franchise toward a buyer that they found.  I spoke with this potential buyer for about a month and he was interested in buying my territory. 

Then they dropped the bomb on me that this guy came with a business broker who would charge me 40% of the total sale price.  Oh, and Handyman Matters corporate was going to charge me $24,000 in transfer fees.  What a crock.  I got on the phone with Andy Bell about these two issues and he basically told me "then don't sell it".  I was dead broke after losing over $100k in this piece of crap franchise, and I had found one person in the world who was interested in buying it, and he told me "don't sell it then".  I ended up walking away from the sale with about $14k, Handyman Matters made $24k, and their worthless broker made $27k. 

The $24k that Handyman Matters took from me basically had no expenses attached to it, and even though I was in a financially desperate situation, they still charged the full amount to me.  I find that to be totally unethical.  I would highly recommend to anyone considering buying this franchise to study the numbers very closely.  Very few franchisees make money and if you want to sell it down the road for a profit, good luck.  They'll tell you about a couple who have, but the sun shines on a dogs a** every now and again.  Get the numbers and profits that owners are making and ask around at how easy or hard it is to make that money and decide from that.  Don't let Careyanne or Andy with his charming smile and smurf-like ways endear you.  

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 06/29/2011 03:35 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Handyman-Matters-franchise/Denver-Colorado-/Handyman-Matters-franchise-Andy-Bell-Handyman-matters-handyman-matters-franchise-Denver-747072. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
1Author 0Consumer 1Employee/Owner
Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Author of original report

Handyman Matters Franchise Owner Is Full of @!*#

AUTHOR: Anonymous - (U.S.A.)

Andy- answer this question: How many owners have their been in the Twin Cities area?  I can count either 5 or 6.  I don't know one that was successful.  This franchise is not meant for cold weather areas.  You state Chicago as an example.  So, if you reading this are interested in buying this franchise, I recommend calling the super successful owner of the chicago market and see what you find.  I know she basically created her own marketing mix and created something that nobody else had or knew how to do (mostly based on Angie's List).  It wasn't being taught by the franchise, so I don't know how you can take credit for that.  She would have built that no matter what her business name was.  

The fact is you screwed me by charging me at the highest legal limit contractually in fees for the sale of my business.  You and I both know you can charge those if you want to, and you often don't.  Just as you hadn't in the sales in that territory previous to my sale.  You set a precedent and then didn't follow it with me.  So don't try to make me look like a fool about signing it 9 times and must not have read it.  I did read it.  I made the mistake of thinking you were a stand-up guy.  I was financially desperate at the time and you totally took advantage of me.  Now I'm doing well and wish I could go back and fight you legally over it.  Even if I lost I'd be happy about making you pay the legal fees to defend yourself.  Our system is set up such that people legally get screwed a lot.  It happens when people fall back on contracts that aren't necessarily right or fair, but they're a contract.  That's what you fell back on.  You chose not to do what was right, but what you could legally.  

For those of you thinking about buying this franchise: just take a look at how much money most of the franchisees are not making.  Once you pay your 10% royalties and marketing fees, good luck making anywhere near what you deserve for how hard you'll work making it.  If you want to buy an annoying, low paying job, this is definitely the right franchise for you.  
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#2 REBUTTAL Owner of company

Is it really that cold out there?

AUTHOR: Andy Bell, Founder, Handyman Matter - (United States of America)

A recent complaint lodged against Handyman Matters Franchise Corp. on Rip-off Reports warrants much clarification.
 
"Anonymous" from Denver, Alabama has stated that he recently owned several Handyman Matters franchises. This much is true. 
 
Let's address his accusations in order:
 
He states that after about a year into his agreement, he realized that this business model "has serious problems and that it does not work in cold-climate areas."
 
As it happens, three of our most successful franchises have operated in the Chicago area for more than six years now. It doesn't get much colder than Chicago. We also have franchise locations of even longer duration in Denver, Colorado: another area well-known for its cold winters.
 
What Anonymous unfortunately did not mention while making his complaint is that he was simultaneously running an entirely separate business franchise while he held his Handyman Matters franchises. He left the day-to-day operations of his Handyman Matters franchise to a customer service representative/office manager, who had no official training from our Corporate office. And while we urged him to send this manager to our corporate offices for a week of orientation and training, he never complied. Every new franchise owner attends this vital training, given how critical it is to the successful operation of their franchise business. Furthermore, Anonymous had numerous opportunities to take advantage of this important, required and FREE of charge training, as we offer these classes six times a year. Yet he never trained anyone in his office and left them alone to run the business.
 
Additionally, we provide "field support" in the form of experienced consultants who travel to all of our franchise locations, as well as providing daily support via telephone and various forms of electronic communication. One of these consultants traveled to Anonymouss locations TWICE during the time he was an owner. On both occasions, our consultant discovered that this former owner was leaving the day-to-day operations of Handyman Matters to someone else, and that he indicated no interest in taking a more hands-on approach to his business; even as it continued to struggle.
 
When Anonymous made the decision to sell his business, he states that Handyman Matters "dropped the bomb" on him that the purchaser of his territory "came with a broker who would charge 40% of the total sale price and take $24,000 in transfer fees."
 
All financial information is clearly stated, not once, BUT THREE TIMES, in the Financial Disclosure Documents that Anonymous signed upon the purchase of his territories. And since Anonymous bought three territories, he signed three entirely separate contracts. This means he affixed his signature NINE TIMES to documents that stated EXACTLY what his costs would be, but then he said it caught him by surprise. I can only conclude that he put his name on these contracts without bothering to read them. We are absolutely transparent to any and all prospective franchisees regarding financial disclosures.
 
Anonymous is accusing Handyman Matters of being "totally unethical," when the real challenge here seems to be a lack of personal responsibility in understanding the agreements, and the lack of commitment Anonymous demonstrated to run his franchise effectively. He repeatedly ignored advice and violated sections of the contracts he signed relating to the standard procedures for operating his Handyman Matters franchises.
 
I do, however, agree wholeheartedly with one point he raises: He "highly recommends to anyone considering buying this franchise to study the numbers very closely."
 
We couldnt agree more! This is why we make that effort so easy and transparent to our prospective buyers. In fact, I firmly believe if Anonymous had taken his own advice, he would now be operating a highly successful Handyman Matters franchise, as many other people across the country do every single day.
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