DreamMaker Bath and Kitchen has been recognized as one of the best franchises for veterans by Military Times.
The remodeling franchise was named a Top Franchise for Veterans based on a number of factors, including the company’s culture, performance, costs and the support it offers current and former service members and their families. The list features 53 franchises that are considered “the best options” for veterans interested in franchising.
“The franchise brands on this list make the extra effort for their veteran and military-connected franchisees,” said George Altman, the Military Times editor in charge of the rankings. “They earned their places on these rankings through their dedication to current and former service members, and their efforts should get the attention of veterans considering their launching a franchise.”
DreamMaker Bath and Kitchen was founded as Worldwide Refinishing Systems by Don Dwyer Sr, the creator of the International Franchise Association’s VetFran Program. A Vietnam veteran, he started the Vet Fran Program after the Gulf War to help veterans across the country become business owners through franchising. Today, the franchise is known as DreamMaker Bath and Kitchen and is run by his son Doug Dwyer, who prefers the title of Chief Stewarding Officer (CSO) to CEO. DreamMaker Bath and Kitchen is still an active participant in the Vet Fran program. They offer Veterans who are interested in franchising with DreamMaker a discount on their franchise fee.
He notes that while the discount is a small acknowledgement of the sacrifice and dedication of service members, it pays great dividends, adding that veterans make excellent franchise owners. The exact traits that they learn and express through their service — dedication, honor, commitment to excellence, leadership, attention to detail, perseverance, camaraderie — are the same traits that help a business owner succeed, especially when they are able to work with proven systems and enjoy training and ongoing support.
“If you are a veteran, first of all, thank you,” he said. “We owe you a tremendous debt. Without the efforts of you and your fellow service members, we wouldn’t enjoy the freedoms that have allowed us to build a growing business based on Biblical principles. DreamMaker is working to make lives better for veterans, whether they need help remodeling, or are looking for a new career.”
In addition to offering service members and veterans a discount, VetFran provides other incentives, mentoring and education about franchise ownership. The program has helped more than 5,000 veterans become franchise business owners since 2010, according to the International Franchise Association.
DreamMaker is no stranger to veteran outreach. Many DreamMaker franchise owners have remodeled homes for disabled veterans — creating more accessible baths and kitchens, and backyard decks with ramps instead of stairs. At the same time, the company has created a path for veterans to move into skilled trades and to become franchise owners.
One such veteran franchise owner is Air Force veteran Nate Coombs, Owner of DreamMaker of Ogden, Utah. The father of three is committed to making homes safer for veterans, and notes that there are grant programs to help disabled veterans remodel their homes for greater accessibility.
“Disabled veterans and seniors often face obstacles in their homes as they age, and it takes someone with universal design expertise to help them start making life a little easier,” he says. “It always amazes me that many small changes in homes can be huge for veterans and seniors,” he said.
Several of DreamMaker’s most successful franchisees come from backgrounds outside the construction and remodeling industry. DreamMaker’s business systems, coaching and support help people learn the business and thrive. And business is good. DreamMaker unit store sales growth has increased by more than 80 percent over the past six years
Military Times includes Army Times, Navy Times, Air Force Times and Marine Corps Times. The company is part of Sightline Media Group, a Regent company. The rankings are published in each of the newspapers’ print editions and online at MilitaryTimes.com, as well as ArmyTimes.com, NavyTimes.com, AirForceTimes.com and MarineCorpsTimes.com.