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

These low-cost franchises are worth your time, energy and investment.
Bimbimkha007 | Getty Images

Let's face it: Starting a business can be expensive, and most people don't have a million dollars to invest to get their business up and running.

The good news is that you don't need that kind of money to start a profitable business. There are plenty of great franchises you can buy for $25,000 or less, and I've thrown every one from our Franchise 500 list into this slideshow. The franchiseses come from all sorts of industries -- everything from sports to auto care and tax services -- so there are plenty of options that can fit your interests, strengths and budget.

Start the slideshow to learn more and find which of the 24 affordable franchises is the best investment option for you.

Related: 5 Affordable Franchises You Can Start for Less Than $10,000

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

1. Jan-Pro

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 37

Initial investment: $3,985 to $51,605

Initial franchise fee: $2,520 to $44,000

New units in 2016: 375 units (4.8 percent)

Jan-Pro provides a commercial cleaning services for businesses, and there are two types of franchises in the company's business model. The first is a home-based or unit franchise, which represents the person who is responsible for actually doing the cleaning. The second is a master franchise, which oversees a cluster of units. 

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

2. Stratus Building Solutions

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 71

Initial investment: $3,450 to $64,550

Initial franchise fee: $2,700 to $53,800

New units in 2016: 79 units (6.8 percent)

Like Jan-Pro, Stratus Building Solutions is a commercial cleaning service that offers unit franchises and regional master offices. 

Related: Our 5 Best Franchises in the World

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

3. Coverall

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 73

Initial investment: $16,498 to $51,361

Initial franchise fee: $13,500 to $40,320

New units in 2016: 0 units (0 percent)

Another commercial cleaner, Coverall has been franchising for over 30 years and had 8,575 locations across the world at the start of 2017.

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

4. Cruise Planners

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 75

Initial investment: $2,095 to $22,867

Initial franchise fee: $495 to $10,495

New units in 2016: 361 units (17.4 percent)

The first franchise on the list that isn't a commercial cleaning business, Cruise Planners is pretty much exactly what it sounds like. The home-based travel agent network sells full-service travel packages.

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

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

5. Jazzercise Inc.

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 81

Initial investment: $3,530 to $12,900

Initial franchise fee: $1,250

New units in 2016: 181 units (2.1 percent)

The dance and aerobics classes of Jazzercise Inc. do serious business. First founded in 1969, there were 8,880 locations across the world at the start of 2017.

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

6. Anago Cleaning Systems

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 84

Initial investment: $10,440 to $68,548

Initial franchise fee: $4,590 to $32,348

New units in 2016: 132 units (10.0 percent)

Anago Cleaning Systems unit franchises provide regularly-scheduled office cleanings and periodic commercial cleaning services.

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

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

7. Vanguard Cleaning Systems

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 144

Initial investment: $10,930 to $39,400

Initial franchise fee: $9,630 to $35,700

New units in 2016: 58 units (1.9 percent)

Vanguard Cleaning Systems is yet another commercial cleaning franchise. It's worth noting that five of the top seven affordable franchises on our Franchise 500 list are cleaning franchises. They might not be glamorous, but they're good investments.

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

8. Dream Vacations

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 156

Initial investment: $3,245 to $21,850

Initial franchise fee: $495 to $9,800

New units in 2016: 80 units (7.9 percent)

Like Cruise Planners, Dream Vacations is a home-based travel agency network. Both travel agencies -- and many of the franchises on this list -- also offer discounted investment prices for military veterans. So, if you have served in the armed forces, research whether the franchise you want offers those discounts.

Related: 100 Franchises You Can Start For Less Than $50,000

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

9. Chester's

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 170

Initial investment: $8,639 to $296,598

Initial franchise fee: $3,500

New units in 2016: -1 units (-0.1 percent)

Chester's has one of the widest ranges for initial investment -- you will need to invest anywhere between $8,000 to almost $300,000. However, depending on your current assets and plans for the fried-chicken franchise, there's a chance you could start a new location for less than five figures, which makes it worth investigating.

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

10. Property Management Inc.

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 288

Initial investment: $19,850 to $86,800

Initial franchise fee: $15,000 to $45,000

New units in 2016: 49 units (46.2 percent)

Property Management Inc. franchises find tenants for rental properties, process rent payments, provide inspections and more. Basically, you'll work as a flexible landlord who can collaborate with multiple property owners, real estate agents and more.

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

11. Dale Carnegie Training

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 295

Initial investment: $19,700 to $174,500

Initial franchise fee: $10,000 to $30,000

New units in 2016: 4 units (1.8 percent)

If you have a passion for teaching, then a Dale Carnegie Training franchise might be a good investment. Franchises help build new thought leaders by teaching important business subjects like self-improvement, leadership, investment and sales.

Related: Our Top 5 Franchises You Can Run From Your Own Home

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

12. Buildingstars International

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 298

Initial investment: $2,245 to $53,200

Initial franchise fee: $995 to $46,995

New units in 2016: 41 units 6.4 percent)

Buildingstars International is the sixth of seven commercial cleaning franchises in this slideshow, but unlike some of the other options, Buildingstars offers three investment paths: the technician, who works part-time; the onsite manager, who oversees larger buildings and a bigger team; and the corporate manager, who takes on a still greater share of responsibility and revenue.

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

13. SuperGlass Windshield Repair

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 336

Initial investment: $9,910 to $31,000

Initial franchise fee: $9,500 to $28,500

New units in 2016: 6 units (1.9 percent)

SuperGlass Windshield Repair has three main concentrations: windshield repair (of course), scratch removal and headlight restoration. So, if you like working with cars, this might be a good investment.

Related: The 5 Best Burger Franchises You Can Buy (and How Much They Cost)

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

14. Coffee News

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 354

Initial investment: $9,750 to $10,750

Initial franchise fee: $8,500

New units in 2016: -1 units (-0.1 percent)

Coffee News is a free weekly publication, which is distributed among local restaurants, coffee shops and hotels. It makes money by selling ads for local businesses, but the publication also contains news stories, jokes and more.

Related: Low Cost Business Ideas, How to Start a Small Business

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

15. Little Kickers

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 343

Initial investment: $20,000 to $35,000

Initial franchise fee: $15,000

New units in 2016: N/A

Little Kickers provides pre-school soccer classes. So, if you have a passion for sports and a love for children, then check out this franchise.

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

16. Padgett Business Services

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 423

Initial investment: $20,200 to $99,975

Initial franchise fee: $15,000 to $56,000

New units in 2016: -7 units (-1.9 percent)

Padgett Business Services franchises offer tax advice, business advice, payroll solutions and other business services. So, if you're an accountant looking to leave an established business and work for yourself, but you need a recognized brand to help make the transition, Padgett could be a good investment.

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

17. Town Money Saver

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 429

Initial investment: $5,700 to $17,000

New units in 2016: 0 units (0 percent)

Town Money Saver franchises distribute monthly, direct-mail advertising flyers to homes and businesses, which includes coupons that customers can use.

Related: Our Top 10 Franchises You Can Buy

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

18. Christmas Decor

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 444

Initial investment: $19,550 to $62,250

Initial franchise fee: $11,400 to $31,900

New units in 2016: 10 units (4.4 percent)

Christmas Decor franchises offer holiday decorating services. The business focuses only on Christmas, so this is seasonal. That could be a good thing or a bad thing, depending on what you're looking for in your business investment, but it's certainly worth noting ahead of time.

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

19. Leadership Management Inc.

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 447

Initial investment: $20,000 to $27,500

Initial franchise fee: $15,000

New units in 2016: 10 units (2.2 percent)

Leadership Management provides programs and courses in 23 languages to help people achieve their life and business goals.

Related: Need a Business Idea? Here are 55

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

20. HappyFeet Legends International

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 456

Initial investment: $22,500 to $29,400

Initial franchise fee: $15,000

New units in 2016: 4 units (2.4 percent)

Like Little Kickers, HappyFeet Legends International teaches pre-school children soccer skills with the help of stories, nursery rhymes and songs.

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

21. Rhea Lana's Franchise Systems Inc.

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 460

Initial investment: $19,050 to $38,950

Initial franchise fee: $10,000 to $13,500

New units in 2016: 0 units (0 percent)

Rhea Lana's Franchise Systems Inc. organizes events for selling children's clothes. This puts pressure on you to do well during the events, but also frees up your time for the rest of the year -- the business claims it focuses on just six key events per year.

Related: The Top 5 New Franchises to Keep Your Eye On

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

22. OpenWorks

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 462

Initial investment: $17,000 to $124,450

Initial franchise fee: $15,200 to $72,000

New units in 2016: 17 units (5.1 percent)

OpenWorks is the final commercial cleaning business on this list. However, if you've determined that a commercial cleaner is the best investment opportunity for you, then don't write this one off. Take the time to find out which of the cleaning franchises actually fits you best.

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

23. Kinderdance International Inc.

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 471

Initial investment: $17,950 to $46,100

Initial franchise fee: $15,000 to $40,000

New units in 2016: 4 units (3.0 percent)

Kinderdance International Inc. offers education through dance programs. Franchisees can teach at community centers, preschools and child-care centers, which allows you to skip on construction costs.

Related: 5 Tech Franchises You Can Start Now for as Little as $25,000

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

24. Proforma

Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list rank: 476

Initial investment: $4,730 to $39,695

Initial franchise fee: $14,500

New units in 2016: -27 units (-3.8 percent)

Proforma provides business documents, forms, promotional products, printing and other services. If you consider yourself highly organized and have an eye for business style, this might make a good investment for you.