Setting up Shop - Licences & Approvals
Starting a business in Sidney?
Let us be the first to welcome you! Here's everything you need to get started:
1. Register Your Business Name
Your first step is to register your business name through BC Registry Services, which is a requirement for all businesses operating within the Province of BC. You can also use BizPal to identify the permits and licences your business requires from the local, provincial and federal levels of government.
2. Location and Zoning/Permitted Uses
Before you decide on a specific location that meets the requirements for your business, you need to ensure the location conforms to the BC Building Code, and complies with the Town's zoning and bylaw regulations.
Our Town representatives can help you identify these regulations, and help you select the best property to meet all your operations needs. You can also find more detailed information here:
Looking for commercial space options? Visit SpaceList, an external database, to view a partial listing of commercial real estate currently for sale or lease in Sidney.
3. Building Permits and Sign Regulations
Making alterations to your space? Our Town staff can help you determine whether you need a Building Permit. While you no longer need a permit to display your signage, please ensure the size, number and type of signs comply with our Town Sign Bylaw.
4. Apply for a Business Licence
All businesses in Town require a valid business licence, whether from the Town of Sidney, or an Intermunicipal Licence from another municipality within the CRD. If you wish to operate a Sidewalk Cafe, you'll need a Sidewalk Cafe Licence.
- Business Licences
- Intermunicipal Business Licences (coverage for municipalities within the Capital Regional District)
- Inter-Community Business Licences (coverage for certain municipalities throughout Central and Southern Vancouver Island)
- Sidewalk Cafe Licences