Do You Need a Business License?

As we have grown we have had more questions as to what is considered a home occupation by the City. In short, any business that is conducted from your home (within the city limits of Olympia) in which you receive money in exchange for any product or service that you provide is considered a business. The following types of business fall under this category:

Product Consultants

Most of us know someone who is a consultant. They may sell make-up, kitchenware, candles or a variety of other products, but they all should have a business license with the City. If you are a consultant and work out of your home in Olympia, you will need a business license and a home occupation permit. You may have a consultant that does in-home parties in Olympia; these consultants also need to have a license, as well.

Internet operation

We have had many questions about various internet companies. Whether you are providing internet support or selling products over the internet, if the office or home you are working from is in Olympia, it is considered conducting business in the City.


Whether it is language or piano lessons, it is a business activity as far as the City is concerned. Lessons given from your home require both a business license and a home occupation permit.

In-Home Childcare Centers

There are many things that are required from the state to open an in-home childcare center and sometimes a city business license is overlooked. Both a business license and a home occupation permit are required for this type of business.


Taking up a hobby can sometimes turn profitable. Fixing cars, catering, and craft making are great hobbies, but once money is exchanged for the product or service it is considered a business. Please make sure if you start to sell items made in the City, it is considered conducting business. You will need both a business license and a home occupation permit. 

Contact Information

  • Location: Olympia City Hall 900 Plum St. SE
  • Mailing Address: City of Olympia, Tax and License, PO Box 2009, Olympia, WA 98507-2009
  • Hours: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., M-F
  • Phone: 360-753-8327
  • Email: