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Log In / Register | Sep 25, 2017

Liberty Tax

I have been in franchising for 23 years. I go with people to discovery days that are thinking of buying a franchise. I went along with a young man to Liberty for the dog and pony show. The first sign of trouble was someone picked us up at the hotel in an Uncle Sam suit. We went to the office and the whole staff was wearing shorts, flip flops and other casual wear. I have been on more discovery days than I can count and never ran into such a worn looking group. We had a sales rep that was in the Navy at one time and told us some wild tales about his submarine days. More than we needed to know. We ate lunch with John H and he gave us all the good news about the company. We went in after lunch and got the hard sell , the sales rep pulls up all the H@R Block locations on his computer along with their YTD sales information. That was interesting to say the least. One thing I remember the sale rep saying was that we were getting in on the ground floor of the next Microsoft. He must have said this 5 or 6 times during the day. It was shady from the word go. I told the young man I was with to find somehting else to buy into and he took my advise and did not buy the Liberty deal. This was  in 2003 and the big push was RAL  refund loans. After looking at the fees they charged, I could not see where there was much left at the bottom line and still do not see it. This is a business model that is facing death head on. HR Block has lost money the last couple of years and they are pushing their on line business and this is where their futture will be.  50% of tax payers pay no federal taxes now, Liberty, jackson and Block are all fighting each other for the lowest slime in the bucket. If you like going to pawn shops, title loan companies, buy here pay here car lots, and bail bonding compaines, then you will do well in the instant tax prep. biz. This will be your customer base. 

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