Acquiring a Franchise

Most Owner/Operators enter the System by purchasing an existing restaurant, either from McDonald’s or from a McDonald's Owner/Operator. A small number of new operators enter the System by purchasing a new restaurant.

The financial requirements vary depending on the method of acquisition.

Financial Requirements/Down Payment

An initial down payment is required when you purchase a new restaurant (40% of the total cost) or an existing restaurant (25% of the total cost). The down payment must come from non-borrowed personal resources, which include cash on hand; securities, bonds, and debentures; vested profit sharing (net of taxes); and business or real estate equity, exclusive of your personal residence.

Since the total cost varies from restaurant to restaurant, the minimum amount for a down payment will vary. Generally, we require a minimum of $500,000 of non-borrowed personal resources to consider you for a franchise. There are limited opportunities to enter the program with less cash available (primarily in rural or urban areas), and, in some situations, the financial requirements may be substantially higher depending on the specifics of the transaction.  Individuals with additional funds may be better prepared for additional or multi-restaurant opportunities.

Financing

We require that the buyer pay a minimum of 25% cash as a down payment toward the purchase of a restaurant. The remaining balance of the purchase price may be financed for a period of no more than seven years. While McDonald’s does not offer financing, McDonald’s Owner/Operators enjoy the benefits of our established relationships with many national lending institutions. We believe our Owner/Operators enjoy the lowest lending rates in the industry.

Ongoing Fees

During the term of the franchise, you pay McDonald’s the following fees:

  • Service fee: a monthly fee based upon the restaurant’s sales performance (currently a service fee of 4.0% of monthly sales).

  • Rent: a monthly base rent or percentage rent that is a percentage of monthly sales.