The Essential Guide to Starting a Business in Beaverton

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Now that you’ve built a business plan around your great idea it’s time to start turning these concepts into a moneymaking reality. But registering your business for state and city licenses, securing funds, and navigating the zoning ordinances of Beaverton can sap your entrepreneurial ambitions pretty fast.

To help keep your motivation intact and demystify the process of starting a business in Beaverton, Oregon, we’ve created this guide to walk you through all the technical, tedious phases of setting up your business.

Permits, Licenses, and Regulations

In order to operate a business in Beaverton you’ll need to register with the state department and obtain a city license. To simplify this process, the Oregon Secretary of State put together a Business Wizard that can help you identify which permits you will need based on the type of business you’re starting. Additionally, you can find general tips for new businesses in their free guide. For financial tips and classes on running an efficient small business, the City of Beaverton has compiled a number of startup resources from the Economic Development department of Oregon. These resources include a “How to start a business” guide, with excellent general counsel and tips specific to the region.

As for the city license, you can apply online to satisfy section 7.01 of Beaverton’s municipal code, which “requires that anyone engaging in any business within the city limits is required to pay a business license fee unless specifically exempt by state or federal statute.” These fees help support a number of community programs in the city and are based on a calendar year ending on December 31 (businesses operating after June 30th of the same year pay a reduced rate). Note that even though your work may be conducted outside the city limits, if your business is still based in Beaverton you will have to acquire a city license.

Taxes and Insurance

When you start your business, you’ll be subject to property, county, state and regional taxes as well as federal taxes. Luckily, you can find out which of these will impact your business most—based on your industry and location—by visiting Beaverton’s “Tax information for Businesses” page.

As for insurance information, you’ll likely be required to carry workers compensation insurance as well as business liability insurance to operate in Beaverton. Of equal import is whether or not you want to provide employee health insurance. While you’re under no obligation to do so, providing this coverage is a great way to recruit (and keep) employees. To help you find out which types of insurance are required for your business and which health insurance options work best for you, visit the City of Beaverton’s Insurance page.

Zoning and Construction Permits

Unless you’re running a business out of your home you’ll need to make sure you find property that’s zoned for your type of business. Beaverton has a zoning and land use map that you can use to find local areas suited for your industry. If you plan on constructing a new building rather than use an existing space, you need to visit the “Building Permit” page, which lists the requirements for keeping your business up to code as well as the various permits that certify you’ve done so. In cases where your building is up to code before you moved in, you will be refunded the cost of acquiring permits for things like plumbing, electrical, and mechanical.

Business Solutions and Infrastructure

Once you’ve established your base of operations and completed the necessary paperwork, it’s time to set up the infrastructure of your business. For some that can be as simple as an Internet connection and a cell phone. Others may need solutions ranging from IT support and PBX phone systems to cloud storage and private data lines.

When choosing which business services you need, be sure to refer to your business plan often. If a service won’t help you enact that plan then avoid it. On the other hand, if adding a particular service could magnify your gains, then it’s worth considering even though it may crowd your budget. It’s also worth it to find a provider with local reach. Should you need assistance, you’ll want to be able to get in touch with someone who knows Beaverton as well as you do.

Asking for Help

While the specifics of your business are up to you, using the resources above will remove some of the barriers to your success. If you have any questions about starting a business in Beaverton that aren’t covered in the reference materials, then feel free to reach out to the City of Beaverton. Their Economic Development department is as invested as you are in helping your business succeed.

You can reach the Economic Development Division using this info:

Economic Development Division

The Round

12725 SW Millikan Way

Beaverton, OR 97005

PO Box 4755

Beaverton, OR 97076


Ph:  (503) 526-2456

Fax: (503) 526-3720