Let’s briefly review:

You’ve decided you want to start a business and we got excited!!! Then we went through the rigors of choosing your business name. How fun was that? After that, we went over the incorporation process and discussed different options for your business entity. Whew! We’ve put in work!

Now let’s go over some other important ‘stuff’.

The entire point of all of this is to make sure you are operating at an optimal level and that not only means in a way that protects you most but also in a way that’s legal. The question here is are you allowed to conduct business? Do you need a license to practice your trade. For example, I didn’t pop up one day and just decide to be an attorney. New York State requires me to be licensed. Now, don’t get scared. Every trade that requires a license in New York doesn’t require you to take a bar exam like I had to do. But getting a license may require a certain amount of education or training. Think Real Estate Agent or Hair Stylist. These are trades that require licensing through the State. To see if your chosen trade requires a license issued from the State of New York, you can go here.

In addition to licensing, you’ll need to apply for other essentials and necessary documentation in order to practice at an optimal level, i.e., legally. Let’s jump in:

Employer Identification Number (EIN)

This is covered in ‘Get Structured – Accelerated’, in depth. Pretty much every business needs one. This is your business’ ID number. You’ll need this in order to file your taxes, even with a pass-through entity like an LLC.

Doing Business As (DBA)

A DBA isn’t always necessary, but it is the legal name under which you’ll be operating your business. This is definitely necessary when the business is registered under one name, but you’d like to brand it as something else.

Health Permit

A definite if you’re planning on preparing or producing food. Even caterers are required to file with the Department of Health.

Zoning & Planning

Land use is controlled in many ways and varies depends on locality. You should check with your municipality to look into their zoning and planning laws. These laws dictate where you can run certain businesses. Most prominent are laws controlling what businesses can be run in residential areas, for instance.

Sales & Use Permit

What’s the saying about death and taxes? Depending on what you’re selling, you’ll need to collect sales tax.  You can check on this by contacting your local municipality.

Rental Licensing

Many City’s in New York State require you to sign onto their Rental Registry and pay a fee if you own and rent out property. If you are operating a property management company, you will want to look into this.

Professional Licenses

We talked about this a little earlier, but NY State requires certain professionals to hold licenses. Professionals such as attorneys, electricians, mechanics, insurers, cosmetologists and medical care workers. You can find out more here.

This is not an all-inclusive list but it’s a great start when g along step-by-step in developing your business. Next time well talk about writing a business plan and how that information will help you get to know your business and help others see its potential as well. Until then…..