CertaPro Painters Franchise - CertaPro Complaints
CertaPro Painters

CertaPro Painters Franchise  
"CertaPro Painters Franchise: Selling dreams that become nightmares"      

   >>>   Don't Buy A CertaPro Painters Franchise   <<<
That's the advice and opinion of a former CertaPro franchisee
Wanted: Year-End RAAG Report
If you're a Certapro franchisee, please consider sending me a copy of the year-end RAAG report.
Email to: certaprosucks(at)gmail.com or contact me.
If you don't live too far away, I may be willing to help you peel the wrap from your van in return.

Follow the Certapro Painters Franchisee Disappearing Act

Certapro Painters franchisees who appear to disappear:



It's like flushing $150,000 or so down the toilet.

  CertaPro franchisee:
Going broke? No marketing money left for next spring?
Wondering how to get out?
Read this

CertaPro Painters lawsuits   CertaPro lawsuits:
CertaPro's franchise agreeement includes a binding arbitration agreement, so franchisees will probably not be able to sue but will, instead have to go to arbitration. Arbitration is secret, not public. However, I have been able to find a few lawsuits related to CertaPro in the public domain. Check out the lawsuits

A Record Of Failure:
Nearly 70% Of CertaPro Painters Franchisees Gone In Six Years

CertaPro Franchise  Complaints

Comparing CertaPro Painters' Franchisee Listings shows that nearly 70% of the franchisees listed on Dec. 31, 2004, were no longer listed on Dec. 31, 2010.

Nearly 70% gone in six years.

When a franchisee fails, there remains a 10-year franchise agreement which could precipitate an emotional and financial disaster.

A major reason for franchise failure, in my opinion: Minimum sales requirement.
It only guarantees that CertaPro will make money.

The myth that's a lie:
Franchises do NOT have a greater chance of success:
Franchises have greater failure rate than most believe.

Terrible Franchise Agreement:

CertaPro Painters Contract

CertaPro's franchise agreement is written to favor CertaPro and it places severe conditions, restrictions and financial obligations on the franchisee.

CertaPro Painters franchise agreement is TERRIBLE for franchisees!
CertaPro Painters gets the mine and the franchisee gets the shaft.

You are signing a contract agreeing to pay CetaPro at least $250,000 in addition to the franchise fee and other payments:
The franchisee signs a contract which LEGALLY BINDS him/her to produce at least $5 MILLION in revenue and pay CertaPro at least $250,000 over the 10-year term of the contract.

If you don't make that much revenue, as many don't?
Too bad. You still owe the money.

If you go out of business after, say, 3 years?
Too bad. You still owe the money.

  Minimum franchise fee agreement:
1st calendar year $450,000 (min. $22,500 franchise fee)
3rd - 5th $500,000 (min. $25,000 per year franchise fee)
6th - 10th $650,000 (min. $32,500 per year franchise fee)
source: CertaPro's 2011 Franchise Agreement

Blame the Failed Franchisees:
"He/She Didn't Work Hard Enough"

Certapro's answer, when asked about failed franchisees?

They blame it on the franchisee!

"He didn't follow the plan", or
"She didn't have what it takes", or
"He didn't work hard enough" (lazy).

That's bullshit. When a franchisee is looking down the barrel of a huge financial loss, you'd better believe they will bust their ass to try to make it work.

I've talked to other failed franchisees and the losses are tragic and sometimes heart-breaking: A sense of personal failure, thoughts of suicide, loss of one's home, a marriage breakup.

So Certapro blaming failure on the franchisee (probably HUNDREDS of them) simply demonstrates, in my opinion, what a despicable outfit it is.

If the Certapro franchise really worked:

  • There would be no minimum franchise fee. Their "system" would work as promised. The franchisee would make money and they would make money. But they know it probably WON'T work and they want a guarantee they will profit -- even if the franchisee doesn't.
  • If a franchisee got into serious financial trouble, they would devote attention to him/her. I never saw that. Their corporate staff was, in my opinion, a joke. Precious little support -- just reading stock verbiage from their corporate paperwork.
  • They would not make failed franchisees sign a "gag agreement". That alone should raise red flags! Why do they want to silence former franchisees?
  • The franchise agreement wouldn't be so onerous. The franchisee is guaranteed essentially nothing. Certapro has every advantage. If anything goes wrong, the franchisee is screwed..

So if you hear something like, "The franchisee didn't work hard enough", do this:

  • Ask Certapro to give you a signed document stating a failed franchisee can speak to you candidly and honestly and will be freed from the terms of the "gag agreement". Get Certapro to sign six or more copies of that document.
  • Find six failed franchisees, send them the agreements, and hear the true tales. Certapro should be able to give you contact information for recently failed franchisees. If they say they can't, they're lying.
"Quality" and Subcontractors?
(Headache and Heartburn City)

CertaPro's marketing includes buzzwords like "quality" and "professional", probably to invoke a sense in customers that they're going to get a top-quality paint job done by CertaPro's seasoned, experienced painters.

In fact, many CertaPro franchisees use subcontractors and it appears the subcontractors may get the short end of the stick.

Relying on subcontractors can result in some unhappy painters whose primary goal is to get the job done as quickly as possible. It can also result in some angry customers and many headaches for you.

The Majority of CertaPro Franchisees Will Fail,
based on CertaPro's history of franchise failure

The Majority of

Possibly 90% or more fail

See The Failures YourselfCertaPro complaints
(Most of those "boxes"
are now six feet under)

Forget CertaPro's marketing hype.
Believe The Reality

CertaPro's marketing hype is designed to paint an image of success in your mind (and you may believe that a franchise is practically certain to succeed.

Franchises have a greater failure rate than most believe.
You probably will NOT find all the buried CertaPro skeletons.
You will find precious little on the web from failed franchisees.
CertaPro wants it that way (see "Gag Agreements", below).

CertaPro Franchise Failure
Here's An Example: Florida
August, 2007 to January, 2012:

CertaPro franchise failure

Ask CertaPro about their franchisees' failure,
and they may very well blame the franchisee.
However, the failure rate, as illustrated in Florida,
strongly suggests CertaPro's "blame the victim"
approach is a lie and that CertaPro's
"business in a box" doesn't work well.

Are you willing to risk your life savings
or go deep into debt

on a franchise with a success rate like this?

(Oh, and if CertaPro tries to tell you Florida
is an aberration, don't believe it.)

Also see: Startup Failure Rates - The REAL Numbers

How Much Do CertaPro Franchisees Make?

Did they tell you that
you'll make a lot of money?

Take a look at some of
CertaPro's own numbers

It's amazing to see how they compare to
CertaPro's "minimum annual sales" requirements.

Do you think franchises are
a "sure thing"?

That's False: Franchises may fail more
often than non-franchise startups!


Due Diligence:
You Think You'll Check Out CertaPro Before Buying?
Think Again -- The Deck Is Stacked

Think You're Gonna Do Due Diligence Before Buying A CertaPro Franchise?  Think Again:
CertaPro Painters Gag Agreements      Gag Agreements:

Many (most?) Former franchisees are forbidden to make negative comments about CertaPro. Click here to view a CertaPro gag agreement ("non-disparagement agreement").

WHAT don't they want you to hear?
And WHY?




You're Thinking of Buying a Painting Franchise...
...and you know nothing about the professional painting business?

Are you nuts???

They may tell you "no experience required", but (based on my experience) it's utterly false.
You will end up losing money for "on-the-job training" (trust me), and you may end up with some VERY angry customers.

CertaPro Painters Franchise Disclosure Document (FDD)
You can download CertaPro Painters' FDD at the California Department of Corporations website.
  Franchise Disclosure Document (FDD), 2011
  A look at some numbers from the FDD:

CertaPro Painters Franchise Agreement
You can download CertaPro Painters'Franchise Agreement at the California Department of Corporations website:
  Certapro Painters franchise Agreement
 Former Franchisees:

Care To Share Your Story?

CertaPro Forum

 About This Website:

This site was established by a former CertaPro Painters fanchisee,
to inform the public regarding the CertaPro franchise "opportunity".

My purchase of a CertaPro franchise was the worst and most costly decision of my life. I believe there may be hundreds of other former CertaPro franchisees who share that experience and view. I've heard some of the others' stories.

I believe the vast majority of those who buy a CertaPro franchise risk losing as much as $150,000 or more within a few years and ending up emotionally distressed, saddled with debt or forced into bankruptcy, faced with demands from CertaPro for more money or finding themselves sued by CertaPro.

In my opinion, CertaPro's deceptive marketing, combined with its actions which serve to hide information about the many failures, represents an intentional effort to deceive and misrepresent. I believe they must KNOW they are making money at the expense of others and that most new franchisees are probably destined to fail.

Potential victims of CertaPro's actions should know about the dark side of the CertaPro franchise.

I believe CertaPro's motto should be: "We put the pain in painting".


There's MORE

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Proudly disseminating facts about,
and sharing personal experience with,
the Certapro Painters franchise
since 2009

"Because the public needs to know"