Starting a Business
We know opening, expanding, or relocating a business is challenging, with no shortage of details, questions, and uncertainty. Among these are the City permits you may need to open your doors. This page provides an overview of things to keep in mind as you plan for your new (or moved) business.
Business LicenseEvery business operating in the City requires a business license, which is issued by the State of WA. If you have questions about business licensing please contact Economic Development & Outreach Coordinator Brady Begin.
PermittingCertain businesses are not permitted in all areas of the City. To learn whether your intended business location is zoned for your proposed business, or if you have any questions about home occupations, signs, or building permits, please contact Brooke Eidem.
Home Occupation.If you are operating your business out of your home, you will need to ensure your business meets the requirements for home occupations outlined in SMC 14.207.075(3). Home occupations are intended for indoor activities with limited or no customer visits.
Signs.Most new or modified signs require a sign permit to ensure consistency with the adopted sign standards. Good signage will ensure that every business is visible and streetscapes remain un-cluttered.
A-Boards.A-board (sandwich board) signs do not require a sign permit, but are permitted only outside of the Historic District. An A-board sign may be placed within the public right-of-way where it will not pose a safety hazard for pedestrians or motorists. A-board sign standards include size restrictions.
Building Permits.A building permit is required for some building modifications that may necessary to accommodate your business, such as demolition of walls, new plumbing fixtures, etc.
Assistance in Beginning
a BusinessThe State of Washington has created a guide to assist you in how to start a business. Other helpful information from the State can be found at the following websites:
The following agencies offer valuable resources to assist you as you plan your business: