Business License Information

Obtaining a Business License is easy to do, and the license cost is very reasonable (typically $15 to $100 per year). Business licenses are issued following the City’s fiscal year which means that all licenses will expire on June 30th each year. Also, the City of Carpinteria does not have a gross receipts tax, as do many other jurisdictions. New and existing businesses in the City fall into one of five categories. As a rule of thumb, a business license is required for all business activities conducted within the City limits.

Please visit our new online portal at  to submit a new application or renew your current license.

Questions? Call our Business Support Center at (805)389-3554.


The steps to obtaining a Standard Business License Permit are as follows:

Step 1

Submit applicable business license forms (available at the following link) and pay the related taxes and fees: Business License Application Packet. Businesses physically located outside of Carpinteria need only submit the business license application. The Certificate of Occupancy form is also required for In-City businesses located within a Commercial area only. Please note if your business’ physical address is a residential address you will be required to have a Home Occupation permit along with your Business License (see separate application and remit $10 application fee).

See the current Business License Tax Rate Chart detailing applicable fees which vary based on your business’ total number of employees and the number of months remaining in the fiscal year. All licenses expire on June 30th of each year.

Step 2

The Community Development Department will review the location of the proposed business to ensure that the business can be allowed at the particular location based on the Municipal Code. The Building Inspector will inspect the physical location of the business to determine if it meets all of the requirements of the Building, Health and Safety Codes. This is typically done within five working days.

Step 3

The City of Carpinteria will mail the business owner a business license within 15 working days.

Total Elapsed Time

Typically, 15 days, assuming the applicant meets all requirements of the particular business category applied for.

*Remember, if your business falls outside the realm of the typical business, i.e. home occupations, solicitors, etc. or your facilities require building alterations, new construction or Health Department inspection, you may need to fulfill obligations beyond the Standard Business License Permit process. Also one-time start up fees are required for new businesses in order to process data and to conduct building and planning inspections.