You need a licence to conduct any business in the District. This includes those that are temporary, home-based, based outside of the municipality, or not-for-profit.
- Annual licences are issued for a calendar year (Jan 1 - Dec 31)
- Your business licence is non-transferable, so if your business changes location, or you take over an existing business, you must apply for a new licence
- The fee is not refundable if you close your business
The full list of fees for all business types is available in the fees and charges bylaw.
You are required to pay the full listed fee, which varies, depending on a number of factors, including:
- the type of business you have
- the number of people engaged in the business
- floor space
There is a non-refundable processing charge included in your fee.
How to apply
To apply for a business licence, complete the application form online and email it to email@example.com. We will review and process your application, then email you with a link to pay by credit card or arrange for a cheque to be dropped off.
Is your business located in the District?
Is your business located somewhere else (but you're working in the District?)
Once we receive your application, we will review it to ensure your business conforms to all necessary bylaws before we issue your licence. You are not legally authorized to conduct business until you have received your licence from us.
If you have a home-based business, bed and breakfast, or child care centre, there are other requirements you need to satisfy.
Are you running a business in your home?
If you want to run a business in your home (a 'home occupation'), there are a number of regulations you must comply with in order to get a business licence.
Here are some general guidelines. For full requirements, please refer to the zoning bylaw.
Regulations for home businesses
Home occupations — with the exception of Bed and Breakfasts — must comply with these guidelines:
- You must maintain the residential character of the building
- You cannot occupy more than 20% of the total gross floor area, or 46 sq. meters (495 sq. ft.), whichever is less
- All materials, equipment, and products must be stored or parked within a building
- No vibration, noise, heat, glare, odour, or electrical interference should be detectable from outside your premises
- Your premises should not generate excessive traffic or air pollution
- The only sign or display that can be visible is a single, one-foot-square name plate
- You must be a resident of the home, and a total of two people can work in your business (including yourself)
- You can only sell commodities that you make on the premises
- You can't conduct more than two businesses from the premises (if your premises contains a bed and breakfast, you can only have one home occupation)
- You cannot manufacture, store, assemble, display, or distribute firearms or ammunition
- Gun shops and social escort services are not allowed as home occupations
- If you operate a childcare from your home, you are not allowed to have a home-based business
Are you starting a bed and breakfast (B&B)?
You can operate a Bed & Breakfast (B&B) in any single-family residential zone in the district.
Requirements for B&Bs
There are two classes of B&Bs. Licence requirements vary, depending on which class you fall under.
A Class 1 B&B:
- contains a maximum of 3 bedrooms
- hosts a maximum of 6 guests
You do not require a public meeting or Council approval to receive your licence.
A Class 2 B&B:
- contains 4-6 bedrooms
- hosts a maximum of two guests per bedroom
You are required to get Council approval, and a public meeting will be held, before you will be able to get a licence. You will also need to have building, plumbing, electrical, and property use/licensing inspections to ensure compliance.
Do you have a secondary suite?
If your home has a secondary suite and you want to operate a B&B, the suite must be authorized and registered by the District.
Get more information
Get all the details about operating a B&B in the District, in our handout. It includes information on:
- parking requirements
- required inspections
- sign requirements
- details about the application process
Are you starting a child care centre?
Childcare facilities in the District must comply with both municipal and provincial regulations.
Our community service department is responsible for overseeing the municipal regulations, and can help you understand the application requirements and process.
Is your business in a commercial, industrial, or institutional space?
Before you apply
If you are running your business in a commercial, industrial, or institutional space, you first need to confirm with us that the type of business you are running is allowed at your location under the zoning bylaw. You will also need to meet the off-street parking requirements
Once your location is approved, and you have taken legal possession of your space, you can apply for your licence.
Other permits you might need
- If you need to change or alter your building to accommodate your business, you may be required to apply for building, electrical, and mechanical permits. If you do, you will need a business licence inspection after your permitted alterations are finished
Learn how to apply for building and building-related permits
- If you want to install a sign for your business, you need a separate permit for that
Learn how to apply for a sign permit
More information about permit requirements
Learn about business permits, licences, and other government requirements (local, provincial, and federal) for starting, running, and growing your business