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Old 11-09-2003, 10:54 PM   #1 (permalink)
 
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I am thinking of opeing a tanning salon and wanted a little advice. Is it better to do it yourself of a franchise? Which brand of bed is better? Is it better to lease beds or buy? ......
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Old 11-10-2003, 03:46 AM   #2 (permalink)
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..do it yourself..franchises are not cheap to buy into...the high fees are ridiculous..they MUST be paid even if you dont have a busy season..you are forced into buying equipment/retail of their chosing..if your competitor gets a better/newer bed, you can't 'up'them..everything you do,must be 'cookie-cutter' to the demands of the 'home office'..you will never be in business for yourself...much cheaper, more freedom,prestige to be your own boss, control your own destiny, your own decor, brand name, logo etc..better to buy equipment than lease, though leasing has advantages..BUT..if you are a new up-start, you will NEVER find anyonewilling to lease to you with under 2years time in business.There is not a lease company out there that will lease more than 35k at an average rate of 20-30%interest..my advice, get an SBA loan/bank loan/, and buy!!!..or find a salon for sale with a bank/SBA loan..you could easliy find one in Raleigh for 40-60k, and turn-it around.
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Old 11-10-2003, 07:13 AM   #3 (permalink)
 
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Thanks Soapking. Appreciate the advice. Which tanning beds do you prefer. Had considered going with ETS until I read some of the comments on tantalk.
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Old 11-10-2003, 08:25 AM   #4 (permalink)
 
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Why the **** do people imediately consider ETS beds? That's not fair. I was in the same boat at one time. You should check out the local places and try out their stuff. Make notes. Does the bed run hot? Flakey bulbs? High canopy, price per session, etc. Don't buy the same as the comp. as you'll be playing price tag until you can't take it no more. Also take note at what they are selling for lotions. Don't buy into something for the kickbacks. Invest in something that works. That's what's going to sell. If you can play the game you can make a TON of dough like 30-40% of your income (busy season) Most places will replace bottles that go bad and give discounts on bulk sales.
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Old 11-10-2003, 09:49 AM   #5 (permalink)
 
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I would suggest going with Sundash/Ergoline beds. You will pay a little more up front but the benefits are well worth it.
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Old 11-10-2003, 10:39 AM   #6 (permalink)
 
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I totally agree with HalfBaked, SunErgoline beds are top. They cost a lot to get started but they are easy to maintain and give wonderful results. As for franchising, I agree with soapking. I can't say it any better than him, so I won't try.

Also, the researching other salons in your area is a must. I realize that it may sound sneaky, but if you don't know what your competition is doing, you don't know if you are beating them or not!

Also, your profile says you are in North Carolina. Be careful there, the regulations are a bit strenious to deal with. You can find them online at www.state.nc.us click on "NC Agencies", Quick link to "Enviornment And Natural Resources, Dept. of", Click on "Rules, Policies and Regulations" under the heading of "NC State Laws and Regulations", do a search for "tanning". This should get you to the relevant regulations.

Also, North Carolina requires formal classroom training for tanning salon owners and operators. You need to contact the Department of Enviornment and Natural Resources, Division of Radiation Protection, the number should be (919) 571-4141. It is in Raleigh.

Good luck with your salon!
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Old 11-10-2003, 03:12 PM   #7 (permalink)
 
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i too am looking at opening a salon after the first of year,,my G/F and myself go to diff salons almost dailyand take note of EVERYTHING there,down to which lotion bottles have dust on them,,have called independent tanning bed service tech's around the country asking about which beds require more or less upkeep,seems from the ones that did talk to me,salons in high income neighborhood-areas,clients tend to prefer more flashy beds even if tan quality is less,town im going to open salon in has 50-100 g income avg,,so from talking to techs ,checking out competition,i am leaning towards buying pure tan beds,techs claim they are by far the beds that require less upkeep,,,any comments on direction i am heading will be most appreciated
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Old 11-10-2003, 03:38 PM   #8 (permalink)
 
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k...at the show, ETS had some impressive new beds, I really was impressed...you might want to reconsider, but I will say stay away from the Sunvision line...I do have the Ergo-sundash line and they also have come up with some new ones...shop around and make sure you inquire about ballast and lamp watt, you want them to match...
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Old 11-10-2003, 03:45 PM   #9 (permalink)
 
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Another thing...why do you want to franchise and run the salon the way someone else would have it done instead of running the way you want to run it. I say buy, but everyone is different, you get the tax break if you lease, but I would say finance through a bank...not a leasing company, your APR will be cheaper with a bank.
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Old 11-10-2003, 09:23 PM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Thanks for all the info. Keep 'em coming. I can use the advice.
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