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LIBERTY TAX: Are Liberty Tax Franchise Owners Living Their Dreams?

Liberty Tax is looking for dreamers.

Liberty Tax is looking for dreamers willing to invest their savings, retirement accounts and/or home equity and a good portion of their time and energy into a Liberty Tax franchise.

Liberty Tax is recruiting hard for dreamers – They are even willing to waive the $40,000+ franchise fee. (See email ad below, left)

But are Liberty Tax franchise owners really living the American Dream of business ownership… being their own bosses… controlling their own destinies?

Does the portrayal of the Liberty Tax franchise in the recruitment materials match the reality as reported by current and former Liberty Tax franchise owners?

We’ve included excerpts from a current Liberty Tax franchise ad, and asked Liberty Tax franchise owners to share their thoughts below.

“At Liberty, Dreamers are Welcome.”

In a franchisee recruitment page currently running on Franchise.Com, Liberty Tax describes their target franchisee:

“At Liberty, dreamers are welcome.”

“dreamers who want to work for no one … but themselves”

“have big dreams.”

“forward thinkers”

“dream of success.”

“Possess a passion.”

“Won’t accept average.”

“an exclusive group”

“No Tax Experience? No Worries.”


“prepared to jump in with both feet”

“people who have that fire in their belly and a desire to succeed”

“Liberty franchisees are CEOs”

Liberty Tax AdWho they’ll be as Liberty Tax franchise owners:

“embracing proven marketing plans, working seasonally and connecting through cutting-edge social communications.”

“high profile.”

“you’ll have a proven system to follow that was 40+ years in the making”

“have access to more than 600 years of managerial experience, tax industry expertise and street-savvy marketing.”

“work really hard for 3 ½ months then spend the rest of the year pursuing other interests… Go on vacation. Raise alpacas. Learn to yodel…”

What they’ll get as Liberty Tax franchise owners:

“we will give you every bit of training you need—and then some. We’ll start with a week-long session at our corporate office in Virginia Beach, VA; follow it up with online and printed manuals, traditional and non-traditional training methods, webinars, onsite training, off-site training, conference calls and newsletters.

“Hewitt shares his insight with his franchisees, as a hands-on CEO, hosting conference calls, seminars and personally answering his e-mails.”

“A seasonal workforce keeps overhead lower than nearly any other industry.”

“No inventory. No worries about inventory loss.”

“Competitive advantage, population trends, traffic counts, visibility and more”

“Our team of experienced Site Selectors works one-on-one to locate, negotiate and sign the perfect location for your Liberty Tax office.”

“You will be in business for yourself with a very powerful partner ”

“We have nothing to hide.”

On the ad, Liberty Tax states “We have nothing to hide.”  So we invite Liberty Tax franchise owners to share whether the Liberty Tax franchise has enabled them to live their dreams and control their own destinies.

How well does the Liberty Tax marketing materials reflect the reality of the opportunity?

Do you think that recruiting “dreamers” with an emotional appeal to their egos and self-image is a wise, long-term strategy?


24 thoughts on “LIBERTY TAX: Are Liberty Tax Franchise Owners Living Their Dreams?

  • Hum? Sounds like dreaming alright.

  • Just take out “dream” and insert “nightmare”

    Believe me, Liberty Tax is a dream you’ll wish you could wake up from!

  • “work really hard for 3 1/2 months then spend the rest of the year…” they try to make it sound as if you will be semi-retired. What about the 8 hour per week you are required to be open, what about the monthly GRR’s, what about the required tax schools, the budgets, the planning etc. etc. There is no way one can build a successful company and make money working only 3 1/2 months. If it was that easy they wouldn’t be franchising any offices or franchises, they would keep it for themselves, wouldn’t you?

  • It’s definitely a dream… Keep it a secret though!!! Trying to buy as many territories before the secret gets out…

  • The company places so little value on it’s territories it’s given them away free.

  • Did you see the New office meter on zeenet? These bozos are hammering anyone that will sign up for a new territory, just remember that they are going to take 30% royalties with the new plan! Just think how many more zees will be on this website soon?

  • Liberty financials are out any thoughts?

  • johnbarilla

    Looks like another strong year of growth for Liberty Tax while #1 and #2 keep going in the wrong direction… I still think Liberty Tax will be #1 by 2020. What do you think Mike? Oh yeah, you hope they rot in hell because you failed and want to bring everyone down with you…

  • Liberty’s note recievables went from 68 million to 102 million, there will soon be many new zees entering this board by the end of next tax season, that’s alot of interest especailly when zees are borrowing at 12%, 18% and 25% APR. Run from this POS do not buy a Liberty tax franchise!

  • johnbarilla

    Why Mike because you failed and want everyone else to fail too??? Why do you think you failed, is it just because of Liberty or maybe your fault too?

  • johnbarilla


    Where in the financials did you see notes receivables go up from $68 to $102 mill? That is proof that you either you make stuff up completely or have no idea what you talking about. Probably both.

  • see page 15

  • John Barilla

    End of year balances went up to $ 70,564 from $59,599. Yes, they gave out way more loans this year but way more was paid back on them so the end of the year balance is only up slightly. You proved once again you don’t know what you are talking about.

  • John, only because you try to target me as if I am your enemy for what reason I am not sure, however you really need to learn how to read a balance sheet.

  • John Barilla

    You are not my enemy and I do not target you. I just point out your mistakes or lies.

  • Wow, it looks like 17 unfortunate souls bought a new office this week, that means probably half will be on this board in May. Due diligence before you buy, call current and former zees to see how the Liberty experience goes/went.

  • Frustrated and Disgusted

    Think about it, they could only find 17 people for as much money as these clowns are extracting from their franchisees to sell their franchises. Like Mike says, they will be on this forum next May.

  • CurrentContentZee

    I own a successful LTS office and I owned a failed LTS office. The successful store has been open more than 5yrs and I make enough money in 3.5 months to retire for the rest of the year. Making money within the LTS system depends on location, marketing, work ethic, working capital, and yes “LUCK”. LTS lends money so the Zee can have enough working capital to make it through the leans years. However, new Zees/Business owners forget the golden rule of business and borrow more than the business or they can handle. Unfortunately, most people forget this is a business and most businesses fail within the first 5yrs.

  • june sad

    Stay away from Liberty I lost everything I invested. I was an owner for 10 years. It is true that most territories are sold and resold every year. John Hewitt Makes money on Selling air. A territory has no value. It is just air until you make a successful store there. I had a very successful store. My lead employee bought her own store. She downloaded all my clients addresses and Phone # before leaving my employ. When the next tax season came around and I realized what was going on( I saw the letters) I complained to Corp. They did not back me at all on the “non compete clause”. I lost 200 clients that year. But if you quit liberty they will enforce the clause on you.

  • SanFranDan

    ^^^June sad:

    Come on over to the main LTS unhappy franchisee forum, we’d love to have you join us.

  • willie outlaw

    I am currently a LTS franchisee, I just completed my fourth year. I wish I had ran the other way. The AD is a idiot all they care about is numbers.

  • Former Owner - You get what you work for

    As a former Liberty franchisee I have to comment. You get what you invest, in energy and time. We had a store for 10 years. Pulled out about $50k average each year. Could have easily done more with additional locations.

    Liberty took their cut, but also provided us with off season financing and training to allow us to minimize our investment and also keep us current. After 10 years we sold the store for $120k. Total personal cash invested was $20k + an SBA loan which was paid off from operating funds.

    So no complaints from me. $20k in… $50 – 60k for 10 years. Sold for $120k. You do the math. Were we an anomaly, perhaps.

    The key to our success was location, marketing, and more marketing. You HAVE to drag the customers in, and location is critical. Were we lucky? Maybe. But success is possible.

    Would We do it again? At this point nope. We can do it on our own. For newbies. Absolutely. Very low entry cost, and the POTENTIAL, if you play it correctly to generate reasonable cash flows is good.

    One store is not enough, you need a few. Unless $30 – 50K is enough for you.

    Look at Subway or others. Much higher entry cash, and the same cash flow.

  • bill

    former owner: It’s interesting you decided to post on this forum with 23 post with the last one dated
    5/24/2014 vs. the more popular forum with 5098 post with the last one dated 9/18/2016. If you want to be involved you should post on the active forum.

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