Starting a New Business and Home Occupation Permits

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Thinking about starting a business in Simi Valley?  There are so many things to consider before opening the doors.  Is there a market for your product or service?  How much do you sell the product for, and will people purchase the product at that price?  What is the most effective way to market the business?

Welcome to Simi Valley Side ViewWhether you're starting a new venture, growing an existing business, or looking to relocate to Simi Valley, we're here to help your business prosper.  Find out how doing business in Simi Valley can benefit your organization by calling the Economic Development Office at (805) 583-6701 or visiting our Business Resource Center.

In order for a business to legally operate, there are several permits, fees, and other requirements that a business owner will need to obtain.  Business owners will need to ensure that the proposed location and business type are compatible. The proposed location must be properly zoned for the business type.  The City’s Economic Development Office has prepared an informational booklet "How to Open a Small Business in the City of Simi Valley" to assist you with starting a new business, including a home-based business. 

Home Occupation

If you plan to operate your business out of a residence, a Home Occupation Permit will be required from the City's Planning Division.  The permit places common sense limits on home-based businesses that are appropriate for residential zones; for example, home-based businesses cannot store hazardous materials.  Please refer to the Home Occupation Permit Brochure for more information. 

Tenant Improvement Process

Most owners opening a business in Simi Valley will go through a process called a "tenant improvement." A tenant improvement involves an alteration to an existing building, either interior or exterior, or both.  You will need to meet City requirements regarding architectural design, building occupancy, construction, parking, business signage, landscaping, and possible public right-of-way and sewer improvements.  Please refer to Commercial and Industrial Tenant Improvements page and the informational booklet "How to Open a Small Business in the City of Simi Valley" to guide and orient you through the tenant improvement and the City’s permit process, including any local agencies that may be involved with the opening of the business. 

Land Development

If your new business involves the development of a vacant or underutilized property, please refer to Land Development page for information.  The proposed business may require either a Planned Development Permit (PD) or Conditional Use Permit (CUP).  The approval of a CUP requires that a finding be made that the proposed use is compatible with the surrounding uses.  This level of review requires a Public Hearing before the City’s Planning Commission in which the surrounding property owners are notified to inform them of your proposal and to receive any public comments.

Please contact the Planning Division’s Deputy Director/City Planner at (805) 583-6307, if you desire to discuss your proposed project, and for any questions you may have regarding the planning process and/or the required application submittal information and materials.  A preliminary meeting to discuss your project and application is encouraged.

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