How to Start a Business in Burien

Congratulations on your decision to start a new business! To help bring your dreams to reality, we have created a simple seven-step guide to launching your business in Burien and the state of Washington. To obtain a Burien business license, click here.

“We draw customers from Seattle, West Seattle and Tacoma who like the old-town feel that Olde Burien offers."

— Beka Atwood, Owner The Shoppe Seahurst

"It's easy to get customers in Burien. The Hispanic community has been very supportive."

— Alfredo Covarrubias, Owner ISP Computer

Start a Business

1. Develop a Business Plan

Before you launch your business, plan for success and assemble a business plan. A good business plan will not only guide your through the process of launching a business, but it will also help you to attract business partners and secure funding through financial institutions

Learn More About Writing Your Plan

Review Washington Business HUB's 8-step guide to business planning.

Contact us for information about Burien-area spending habits.

Learn more about local sources of financing for your business.

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2. Get Your Team Together

Move from your plan and spring into action. Seek out the advice of experts to avoid common mistakes in starting a business and to receive assistance with the implementation of your business plan.

Pro Tip: Select an architect and contractor who have experience working with the City of Burien and with your type of business to save your valuable time and money.

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3. Site Selection

Find the perfect location to get the most out of your business idea. View our resources and tips for site selection to get started.

Resources and Tips for Site Selection:

If you have not enlisted the services of a real estate broker, check out our site selector tool to browse currently available commercial properties.

Before you sign a lease or purchase a property, contact us to make sure your property has the right zoning and infrastructure to meet your needs. Asking about zoning, required permits, and permitting timelines can help you avoid facing unexpected costs down the line.

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4. Obtain the Necessary Permits

Get ready for move-in by making improvements to your site. Make sure that you read through and understand which permits, if any, you will need to acquire before you begin work on your new space. Depending on your situation, you and/or your team may be required to obtain one of the following permits: Building Permit, Electrical Permit, Mechanical Permit, Plumbing Permit, Fire Protection Permit, Sign Permit.

Pro Tip: Sometimes a simple project is not so simple. Be sure to contact the building division within the Community Development Department at (206) 248-5520 for assistance or visit the permit center for more information and forms related to permitting.

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5. Register and License Your Business

Obtain a business license from both the state and the City before you begin legally operating within the City of Burien.

Licensing your business involves two steps:

Step 1: Obtain a business license from the state according to your business structure:

Step 2: Obtain a business license from the City by visiting the business licensing page.

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6. Hire Employees

Add passion and talent to your business by bringing on new team members. Read through our resources and tips to learn more about the responsibilities of adding employees and how the City can assist you in this step.

Resources and Tips:

From finding and training qualified workers, to navigating, reporting, and complying with taxes and regulations, the Washington Business Hub can to help your business bring on new team members. In addition to general tips for hiring employees, the Washington Business Hub also has a specific page for payroll-related questions.

We are excited to assist you in your search for employees. Visit our Workforce Assistance page to learn more about how we can serve you and your personnel-related needs.

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7. Advertise Your Business

Congratulations! Now that you have gone through all the hard work of getting your business set up, it is time to tell your business story and let others know you are here. The City of Burien can help.

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