The First Steps to Starting a Business in Wenatchee

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You’re well on your way to having your own business. You’ve come up with the idea and a business plan, but now all you need to do is get things rolling. If applying for licenses, permits, and setting up a place to do business sounds confusing or intimidating, relax. It’s actually easier than you may think, especially now that you’ve found this guide. We’re here to help you walk through the steps you need to take to open your business in Wenatchee.

Get Licensed and Insured

A business license allows you to legally conduct business in Wenatchee. There are a variety of different licenses you may need, depending on your business. At minimum, you’ll need a business license from the state of Washington and at least one of the following business licenses from the city of Wenatchee.

  • Home-based business license: for residential businesses, including daycare centers and group homes
  • Inside city business license: for non-home based businesses located in the city of Wenatchee.
  • Businesses outside of city limits license: for businesses outside of the city but that still plan on doing business in Wenatchee
  • Occupational license: for specific trades or professions, including architects, home inspectors, cosmetologists, or real estate businesses

If you have employees, you’re required by law to have worker’s compensation insurance to cover costs if anyone working for you is injured in a work-related accident. 

Zoning and Construction Requirements

If you’re building a new structure for your business, it must meet city codes before you can receive a business license. The city of Wenatchee’s Fire, Community Development, and Environmental departments will conduct walk-through inspections to ensure your building meets construction and safety requirements.

You’ll also need to make sure the building or area is zoned for the work you’d like to do. For example, you may want to start a home-based welding shop out of your garage, only to find your residential neighborhood is not zoned for that type of work.

Select your business solutions.

To get your business off the ground, you’ll need to put an infrastructure in place. If you have a business with an existing building, this will include high-speed internet and phone services.  Depending on the size and type of business, consider these additional services.

  • Wi-Fi mobility, which is useful if you have a waiting room or restaurant and allows customers to connect to the Internet
  • Dedicated internet access for businesses that require fast upload and download times and guaranteed bandwidth
  • Audio and web conferencing if your business frequently meets with clients or vendors from different locations
  • Business texting to communicate with and send reminders or updates to customers

Let Others Help

If you run into problems or have questions along the way, contact Wenatchee’s Community and Economic Development department. Use the steps outlined here and communicate with the city as you go through the process, and you’ll be open for business in no time.

Image by Kevin Dooley via Flickr