Start/Expand Your Business
Previous ◁ | ▷ Next

Whether starting a new business or growing/expanding an existing business, you can reduce risks, and thereby increase the chance of success, with planning and preparation. The information provided below will help you get started.

Get to know Edmonds

Even owners of existing businesses may not know the latest information, regulations, opportunities or incentives associated with doing business in Edmonds. Get to know the market better. Contact City staff, talk to Chamber of Commerce leaders, and stay in touch through the print and online press. Similarly, make sure you understand the state of business-related regulations.

Downtown Edmonds

Did you know that much of Downtown Edmonds is covered by a Business Improvement District known as the Edmonds Downtown Alliance (aka "Ed!") intended to ensure Downtown Edmonds "stays lively, attractive and prosperous." Businesses located within the Alliance boundaries contribute a assessment fee, billed on a quarterly or annual basis. New businesses opening up within the district are exempt from this assessment for their first year of operation. To find out more about the Edmonds Downtown Alliance, visit their website at

Information for Start-Ups

The following information may be useful as you plan the start-up of a new business. You will find numerous resources in and around Edmonds that may be of assistance, most of which are listed and linked below.


STEP 1: Develop a business plan

A business plan articulates what a business is, where it is going, and how a business owner intends to take it there. A business plan will likely include a summary, a company description, a marketing plan, an operations plan, and management and organization information. A business plan is critical — without a business plan, a business may fail. Most banks require a business plan prior to lending.

Please visit the Community and Business Resources page for a full complement of local, state, regional and federal agencies and organizations that may serve as valuable resources to you as you start up or expand your business. 

STEP 2: Find a location


  • About Edmonds - Click here for everything you want to know about our community including population and demographic information.
  • Local real estate agents: Bing/Google "Edmonds Commercial Real Estate Agents"


STEP 3: Zoning and Permits

Make sure that your business is allowed in the location you have chosen, what regulations may apply, and find out what permits may be required.

STEP 4: Business License and Registration

  • All individuals or companies operating or conducting business within the City of Edmonds, whether located inside or outside the City, must obtain a business license from the City. Prior to registering with the City, prospective business owners or operators should visit the Washington State Department of Revenue Register My Business website for information about state licensing fees and any additional licenses or registrations required, and to find out information about state taxes and Master Business Licensing requirements. One of the requirements for a City of Edmonds license is that all applicants must have an Uniform Business Identification Number (UBI). You may find information about registering your business and obtaining a UBI number on the Washington State Department of Revenue Business Licensing Service webpage.

Economic Development and Community Services Contact

Patrick Doherty, Director

Cindi Cruz, Program Coordinator
or 425-775-7724


Plastic Bag Regulations in Edmonds

Please be aware that in the City of Edmonds only reusable or recyclable paper bags are allowed at check-out stands of retail establishments and restaurants.  Plastic bags for meat, produce and/or bulk products or for take-out food from eating establishments are exempt from this provision.  The applicable code provisions can be reviewed in Section 6.80 of the Edmonds City Code, viewable at