McDonald’s is one of the most successful and well-known fast food restaurants in the world and makes billions in profits every year.

If you are considering becoming a McDonald’s restaurant franchise owner, you may be wondering how much a McDonald’s franchise costs. Below you will find the answer to this and other frequently asked questions!

How much does the McDonald’s franchise cost?

A McDonald’s franchise costs between $1 million and $2.2 million to fully start operations. To open a McDonald’s restaurant, franchisees must have at least $500,000 in cash to begin the application process. Additionally, a franchise fee of $45,000 is also required.

There are many other details you need to know when it comes to buying a McDonald’s franchise which we’ll cover below!

How much does a McDonald’s franchise owner make per year?

A McDonald’s franchise owner earns an average of $150,000 per year, although this number can vary depending on location and popularity.

Additionally, the average annual sales of a McDonald’s restaurant are $2.7 million.

Along with this, you need to deduct costs associated with payroll, food costs, supplies, and other costs that the business charges the franchise owner.

Thereafter, approximately $150,000 per year is what the franchise owner is left with.

Is a McDonald’s franchise worth it?

It could very well be worth owning a McDonald’s franchise since annual sales can be well north of $2 million.

Unfortunately, there are many other associated costs to be aware of, including paying real estate fees, landscaping, and unforeseen upgrades.

Additionally, the franchise owner is responsible for upgrading kitchen equipment as well as remodeling and decorating. The older the McDonald’s, the more expensive the upgrades are.

Upgrades can easily reach $1 million, cutting into profits, but a franchise owner can still bring in more than $150,000 per year.

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Can anyone buy a franchise with McDonald’s?

Unfortunately, not just anyone can purchase a franchise with McDonald’s due to the high costs associated with becoming a franchise owner.

You will need to have at least $500,000 in liquid assets available, although it may be closer to $700,000 in liquid assets.

Additionally, you must pay $45,000 for a franchise fee, which is paid to the franchisor.

On top of that, of the $1-2.2 million it costs to start a franchise, you should be able to come up with 40% on your own, however, you can finance the remaining 60%.

What is the first step to becoming a McDonald’s franchise owner?

First, there is a lengthy application process where you must disclose your financial information, net worth, geographic information, and any criminal record you may have.

The McDonald’s franchise application is only the start of the process, with follow-ups likely where further relevant information may be requested.

However, you will need to complete a training program before you can become a franchise owner. It lasts from 12 months to 18 months and is required for anyone with a genuine interest in a franchise.

What are the main objectives of the McDonald’s franchise training program?

The McDonald’s Franchise Training Program lasts 12 to 18 months and is the first real step in obtaining a McDonald’s franchise and includes:

  • Be able to invest $500,000 or more of your cash in a McDonald’s
  • The training requires you to be available at different times of the day and on different days of the week
  • Divesting your business interests
  • Learn what makes a good franchisee and be prepared to adapt quickly to change
  • Move if necessary based on restaurant location
  • Dedicate your full attention and time to the catering activity and leadership role
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Can you own more than one McDonald’s franchise?

Can you own more than one McDonald's franchise?

Many franchise owners operate more than one McDonald’s, but you will need much higher cash flow if you want to operate more than one.

Additionally, McDonald’s looks at business history, so people who have been able to operate more than one business at a time are considered the most qualified to have multiple stores.

Subsequently, training in business or finance is also useful for managing multiple sites.

Is owning a McDonald’s franchise with a partner allowed?

As a general rule, McDonald’s does not allow someone to purchase a franchise with a partner, although this is at the sole discretion of the franchise manager.

Unfortunately, partnership agreements are not standard, but specific case-by-case circumstances might allow it.

Can you choose the McDonald’s restaurant you want?

The location of the franchise you would operate is not something you can choose and is not even discussed until after the in-depth training program.

Additionally, a location near you may no longer be available by the time you complete training, so geographic location flexibility is preferred.

McDonald’s doesn’t let you choose which store you want to operate, and if you’re limited to a specific location, you probably won’t get the franchise.

Can you apply to manage a brand new McDonald’s location?

McDonald’s does not allow a person who has just completed the franchise training program to manage stores that have just opened or are about to open.

Additionally, new locations are given to someone who has already proven themselves with their current store.

Owning a McDonald’s franchise also means being involved in the community

People who have started the process of becoming McDonald’s franchise owners should also get involved in the community.

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Likewise, it is encouraged that the franchisee gives back to their community in a way they deem appropriate and enters into a positive leadership role for the community.

Additionally, Ray Kroc, the founder of McDonald’s, was all about giving back and charity. Subsequently, this is where the Ronald McDonald House and Archways to Opportunity programs came from.

What traits does McDonald’s look for in a franchisee?

McDonald’s looks for people who exhibit specific qualities and traits because this can indicate how successful a franchise operator you will be, including:

  • Focus on the best possible customer experience
  • Lead a business in all its operational aspects
  • Have great interpersonal skills
  • Manage, train and lead a team at a sustained pace
  • Desire to give back to your community
  • Respect a variety of values ​​and cultures
  • Ability to create short and long term business goals and plans
  • Follow proven paths to success and a desire to learn
  • Produce positive financial results

If you want to know more, you can also read our articles on McDonald’s vs Hungry Jacks, Competitive Advantages of McDonald’s, First McDonald’s Store.


It will cost between $1 million and $2.2 million to become a McDonald’s franchisee, with at least $500,000 needed in cash.

Additionally, the costs associated with a McDonald’s franchise are high, including payroll, and upgrades can significantly reduce annual profits estimated at $2 million.

Not to mention, the location and size of your store are factors that will determine your eventual profits and income as a franchisee.

That said, becoming a McDonald’s franchise owner is still a very lucrative business, and earning $150,000 or more per year is typical.

Visit Les Gourmandises for more information.

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