Business License Information
Who needs a business license?
Generally, any business operating in, or conducting business within the City of Renton limits will be required to annually register and obtain a business license.
A new license will need to be obtained when an existing business changes ownership, changes name, or changes location.
If you have any questions regarding the City of Renton's business license requirements or need help applying for a new Renton business license or renewing an existing license, please email Business Licensing or call 425-430-6851.
How do I get a business license for the City of Renton?
Prior to applying for a City of Renton business license, your business must obtain a Uniform Business Identification number (UBI) from the Washington State Department of Revenue. You can contact the Washington State Department of Revenue at 1-800-647-7706, or you can find instructions on the Department of Revenue's website.
Once you have a UBI number, the next step is to complete the City of Renton business license application. Depending on the type of business being operated, one of the following applications will need to be submitted:
Payment is due at the time of application submittal.
How much is the business license fee?
The business license registration fee is due at the time of application, and during each subsequent renewal.
- Commercial Business License (both in-city and out-of-city) - $150 annual registration fee
- Home Based Business License - $150 annual registration fee
- Temporary Business License Application (maximum 90 days or 480 hours worked) - $50 registration fee
- Peddler's Permit - $75 registration fee (annual)
(CHANGES) Effective 1/1/2017
The per employee business license fee is also due annually, at the time of the business license renewal. The per employee business license fee is ONLY applicable for:
- Businesses that have not owed any Business and Occupation (B&O) Tax to the City of Renton in the preceding 12 months. (Businesses generating gross revenue less than $1.5 million within the City of Renton); AND
- Businesses reporting more than 1,200 worker hours in the year
The per employee business license fee is $.0352 for every hour worked in the preceding year. More information on the per employee business license fee can be found on the City's Business Tax page.
If my business is located in my home, do I need a business license?
Yes. The Home Based Business License application includes detailed information and instructions regarding home based businesses. If you live in an apartment you must have written permission from the landlord to conduct business out of the apartment at the time of application. Section 4-9-090 of the Renton Municipal Code establishes the parameters for businesses operating in residential areas. The Zoning Administrator will verify compliance with the Code prior to issuance of a Home Based Business License.
What is the Business License Approval process?
All applications in the City limits of Renton are sent to the Building/Zoning Department to determine compliance with zoning laws for specific business location. Once approved for zoning, the Fire Prevention Department reviews for approval. Once the application has been approved by all departments and payment has been received, the Business License Division will record, print, and mail out the Business License.
How do I renew my existing City of Renton business license?
Businesses with an existing license will receive an annual renewal application approximately 30 days prior to the current expiration date, and a security code will be included for online renewal purposes. With your City of Renton business license number and security code you may renew online; or you may return our completed renewal form to: City of Renton Business License Division, 1055 South Grady Way, Renton, WA 98057. Payment is due at time of renewal.
Are there any other licenses or taxes for doing business in the City of Renton?
Yes. In addition the annual business registration fee, if a business reports more than 1,200 hours worked for the year, the business is responsible for:
Other taxes your business may be subject to:
Where can I find more information for businesses in Washington State?
For information regarding securing a business license from the Washington State Department of Licensing, or registering with the State Departments of Revenue, Labor and Industries, Employment Security, or the Office of the Secretary of State, please check out the State of Washington - Business Licensing Service. Please note that the State business license and the Master Business License are separate from, and in addition to the City of Renton business license.
The Small Business Development Center provides local small and medium-sized businesses with professional, no-fee, confidential, one-on-one advising, plus research services, training classes and seminars that can help your company thrive and grow. For more information call 425-235-7819 or visit their website: www.wsbc.org.