When starting a business in Larimer County, you may need to interact with multiple departments to make sure your business is:

  • properly licensed (if your business deals with liquor, food, plants, animals, day care, schools, summer camps, septic systems or trash hauling),
  • operating in an area zoned for that type of business and
  • meeting state and local regulations.
  • compliant with sales and use tax within Larimer County.

Also, if your business is located within city/town limits, you’ll need to contact the municipality to learn about their requirements. 


  1. How do I get a county business license?

    The only businesses required to have a county business license are liquor establishments and trash haulers.

    • Information about liquor licenses – (970) 498-7860.
    • If you need a trash haulers license, contact the Solid Waste Department – (970) 498-5760.

    There are state regulations around licensing for certain types of business. Many of these regulations are enforced at the county level or state licenses are issues by the county.

    Some businesses must apply for a sales and use tax license based on the product or service provided. More information is available on the Finance website.  

  2. What State level information do I need to know?

    You will need to register with the Colorado Secretary of State for a Trade Name.  The form and instructions for registration are on the Secretary of State’s website.

  3. Who should I contact for help or to find more answers?
    • Larimer County's Zoning Information website can help you understand allowable use by parcel in unincorporated Larimer County. Please connect with the respective city's or town's Planning Department or Community Development department to learn about incorporated zoning rules. Interacting with the correct government agency prior to signing a lease or purchasing property for your business is highly encouraged.
    • The Larimer County Small Business Development Center offers web resources and expert advice for people starting businesses in Larimer County. They have offices in Fort Collins, Loveland and Estes Park.
    • The Colorado U.S. Small Business Association District Office offers web resources and training for small business owners.
Connect with the Economic Development Team

Larimer County Economic and Workforce Development
200 West Oak Street, Suite 5000
Fort Collins, CO 80521
Phone: (970) 498-6680
Email: lcewd-ecodevo@larimer.org