Here's How Much It Really Costs To Open A Jimmy John's Franchise

Do you think you have what it takes to own a Jimmy John's franchise? Are you willing to be a master of speed and efficiency that makes and delivers sandwiches "freaky fast?" If so, founder Jimmy John Liautaud wants you to know that running a restaurant is "not sexy." It's hard work with long hours. "It's not for everyone," Liautaud said on the "Our Story" page on the Jimmy John's website. "I explained in detail how tough running a Jimmy John's can be. I explained the long hours, the unforgiving weather, the late nights, the weekends, and all of the sacrifices that go along with the industry. I made it tough for people to get into the system," Liautaud said (via Business Insider).

It may be tough to get in, but Jimmy John's wants you to succeed. New owners go through a 17-day training followed by a four-week apprenticeship before taking over their own store (via Franchise.com). For those willing to take the plunge, Jimmy John's says it has certain advantages: a simple menu and inventory, and a fresh, healthy product (if you're willing to overlook those food poisoning cases). "No soups, no hot sandwiches, no salads. Just sandwiches," Jimmy John's promises on its website for prospective franchisees.

One reason that owning a Jimmy John's franchise isn't for everyone: You need to have a certain amount of cash to even get a foot in the door.

Want to open a Jimmy John's? Only millionaires need apply

The total cost of opening up a new Jimmy John's varies widely. Is the space you are entering in serious need of repairs? Are you building a new Jimmy John's from the ground up? Whatever the case, Jimmy John's requires you to have $200,000 of ready cash and a net worth of $1 million. First, Jimmy John's extracts an upfront franchise fee of $30,000 to $35,000. Then, converting the location from whatever it was before into a Jimmy John's will cost anywhere from $97,500 to $200,000, according to ownajimmyjohns.com. Expect to pay another $95,500 to $166,000 for freezers, refrigerators, ovens, signs, furniture, and other fixtures. All told, Jimmy John's estimates your initial investment will be $313,600 to $556,100, which does not include any real estate purchases. These numbers don't apply if you are taking over an already existing Jimmy John's location. Then, you might pay more, or you might pay less.

All that's left to do after that is make sandwiches and make a profit – enough profit, hopefully, to give Jimmy John's a cut of your gross sales. The company takes 6 percent in royalty fees and 4.5 percent for advertising every single week. After all, Jimmy John's isn't making sandwiches any more – you are. The chain has to make its money somehow.