Before you open your bookstore, you must first obtain a Certificate of Occupancy (CO). Normally, you will need to apply for a CO from the city or county where you live. This will give you the authority to operate a business in a certain building. You will also need to obtain an EIN (Employer Identification Number), also called a FEIN, from the Internal Revenue Service. You’ll need to get a FEIN if you plan to hire employees.
Obtaining a CO is important for all new businesses in California. It serves as proof that the building meets local and state standards, and is safe for customers to use. Commercial properties in California are required to acquire a CO from the Building Official when they change land uses. The certificate costs $50 and is issued upon completion of a construction project. The cost of acquiring a CO for a book store can vary widely, but is generally about the same as obtaining a CO for a home.
Once your store has acquired a CO, you will need to display the certificate in a prominent location on your business premises. After acquiring your CO, you must post it in a conspicuous location and it cannot be removed without permission from a building official. You can get a copy of existing COs from the Community Development Permit Center. This document is vital for business success.