Every municipality (City, Township, Borough, etc.) has a Land Use/Zoning Ordinance which regulates the kinds of business activities that are permitted within a designated zone and places restrictions on building on land parcels including building setbacks, building heights, signage, and various other aspects of the land usage.
When evaluating a location for your business you should consult with the Zoning Officer to determine the suitability of the site for your purposes and what obligations you will have, including possible Planning/Zoning or Landuse board approvals. It is vital that you do your due diligence and understand the zoning requirements/restrictions before signing a lease. You should also be aware of the cost associated with receiving zoning approvals to avoid expenses for which you did not budget.
Generally, the easiest way to get set up is to find a location that was formerly the same type of business as yours. For instance, if you're opening a restaurant, you might try to find a space that used to be a restaurant. This usually means that the property already has the correct zoning and permits for your business, although you should always verify with the Municipal Zoning Officer to be sure.
Select a Location
Finding a great location for your business is a critical step to set your business up for success. Do your research on the area, and think about the needs of your customers and employees. You can also save time and money down the line by learning about zoning and building permits, and getting smart about how to negotiate a commercial lease.
Planning to work out of your home? Home-based businesses are some of the simplest businesses to set up in New Jersey. However, there are a few rules that you'll want to be aware of to make sure that your business activities aren't disrupting your neighbors and that your location is safe for your clients.