Home-Based Businesses

Home-based businesses require a business licence.

The City of Edmonton’s Business Licence Bylaw outlines the following category and regulations for businesses that are based in a home.

Home-Based Business

This category is described as "any business conducted out of a residential premises."

There are no special business licence regulations for this category, other than the need for a licence. However, this business does have special regulations under Edmonton's Zoning Bylaw.

Zoning Bylaw regulations for your business depend on whether you are a Major or Minor Home-Based Business, which is determined when you apply for your development permit (see Getting a Business Licence for more information).

The zoning of your property dictates whether a Major or Minor Home-Based Business is permitted in your home.

Major Home-Based Business Zoning Bylaw Regulations:

Major Home-Based Businesses are those businesses that are visible and may involve the customer coming to the home or some other use of the property that is not typical of a residential area. Major home occupations will allow more business visits and also allow you to have employees.

Typical businesses are hair dressers or lawn maintenance companies.

The following regulations apply:

  • There can be more than one visit to your home each day because of your business.
  • Your business can not have an exterior display or advertisement other than an identification plaque or sign that is a maximum of 20 centimetres by 30.5 centimetres in size.
  • You can not use mechanical or electrical equipment that creates external noise, or visible and audible interference with the home electronics of your neighbours.
  • Your business must not generate pedestrian traffic, vehicular traffic, or parking in excess of that which is normal for your neighbourhood's zone.
  • There can only be two non-resident employees or business partners working on-site any one time.
  • No outdoor business activity, or outdoor storage of material or equipment associated with the business is allowed.
  • Your business can not change the principal character or external appearance of the residential property.
  • This type of business can not be located in homes that have a secondary suite.

Minor Home-Based Business Zoning Bylaw Regulations:

Minor Home-Based Businesses are those that are considered to have no impact on the neighbours and are basically invisible.

Typical businesses would be consultants, computer programmers and other service-oriented businesses where the proprietor goes to the customer rather than the customer coming to the home.

The following regulations apply:

  • There cannot be more than one visit to your home each day because of your business.
  • Your business cannot have an exterior display or advertisement other than an identification plaque or sign that is a maximum of 10 centimetres by 30.5 centimetres in size.
  • You cannot use mechanical or electrical equipment that creates external noise, or visible and audible interference with your neighbour’s home electronics.
  • There cannot be any non-resident employees or business partners working on-site at any time.
  • No outdoor business activity, or outdoor storage of material or equipment associated with the business is allowed.
  • Your business cannot change the principal character or external appearance of the residential property.

For More Information

Permits and Licensing Service Centre

Sustainable Development
5th floor, 10250 - 101 Street
Edmonton, AB T5J 3P4

Hours of Operation:
Monday to Friday
8am to 4:30pm

Telephone

In Edmonton: 311

Outside Edmonton: 780-442-5311

Fax 780-496-6054