Apply For A Business License Albany, New York

Will I need a business license to operate my business in Albany, New York?

Yes, but only for some of the business services, not for all. At this time the City of Albany requires business licenses or permits for the following:

  • Storage of Towed Motor Vehicles  
  • Vendor License
  • Taxicab License
  • Special Events License
  • Bingo (for organized public events)
  • Second Hand and Collateral Loan Dealers
  • Door-to-Door Salespersons License
  • Auctioneers and Auctions License
  • Pool Hall License
  • Junk Dealers License
  • Café License
  • Door-to-Door Vendor License
  • Amusement Device License
  • Billiard License
  • Auctioneer License
  • Sale of Goods at a Public Auction License
  • Going out of Business License
  • Handbill Distribution License
  • Liquor  License
  • Open Container  Permit (for businesses that utilize potentially hazardous substances)

If you would like to view business activities that demand a business license, you may visit the City of Albany’s website at Albany Business License. An alternate webpage is Albany Licenses.

What general information is required for an Albany business license application?

Although the business license applications are all unique one to another, here is the majority of the information that you will need for the various applications. Please note that not all of the business license applications will require all of this information.

  • Business name
  • If applicable, your corporation name
  • The physical location of your business
  • Mailing address and phone number of your business
  • Date you plan to commence business
  • If applicable: health permit number, state sales tax ID number, or your federal employer’s tax ID number
  • A description of the business you plan to conduct
  • Ownership information: sole ownership, corporation, partnership, trust, LLC or limited partnership
  • Owner name, address, social security number, phone number and driver’s license number
  • You will need to sign your application which will verify that you agree to abide by all requirements that are in place to operate a business in Albany and that all the information that you have provided is true and complete 
  • You need to procure the signature of the owner or legal representative of the owner of your business property
  • A list of several questions in regards to: potentially hazardous materials that may be created or stored, whether you plan to have adult entertainment, plan to sell alcohol, tobacco, and so forth. Answering yes to any of these questions will require that you give a thorough explanation on a separate sheet of paper. 
  • A business plot plan will need to be submitted along with your business license application which gives a floor plan of your business building, the cross streets and parking areas, and a total square footage of the building you plan to use

Must I pay for my Albany business license?

Yes. Here is the most recent information regarding city fees:

  • Storage of Towed Motor Vehicles  call the City Clerk for details
  • Vendor License call the City Clerk for details
  • Taxicab License new license fee: 75, renewal fee: $100, replacement fee: $25
  • Special Events and Facility Use Permit  between $27.50 to $1,000, call City Clerk for details
  • Bingo (for organized public events)
  • Pool Hall  call the City Clerk for details
  • Coin-Operated Amusement Devices License
  • Junk Dealers License  Secondhand Dealer: $210, Collateral Loan $137.50, Junk Dealer $150
  • Café License $50 application fee. There may be other fees associated. Call the City Clerk to learn more
  • Door-to-Door Vendor License  door-to-door merchandise only, $200, sales from a vehicle $500
  • Amusement Device License less than half a year: $40 per machine, less than full year: $55 per machine, full year: 70 per machine
  • Billiard License  A $625 surety bond must be purchased as well as a $15 fee per table
  • Auctioneer License $110
  • Sale of Goods at a Public Auction License $110
  • Going out of Business Permit $27.50 per 30 days
  • Handbill Distribution License 1 week: $25, 1 week to 3 months: $50, 3-6 months: $75, 6-9 months: $115, 9 months to a year: $150
  • Liquor License  call the City Clerk for details
  • Open Container Permit (for businesses that utilize potentially hazardous substances) $11

It is critical to note that even though this is the most current pricing, it is still important to contact the City of Albany for a complete fee evaluation to determine if you may be due other fees as well, such as inspection fees. The City Clerk can be reached at (518) 434-5090.

How can I apply for a business license in Albany, NY?

The City of Albany has online applications that you can type directly into the designated fields and print. The document consists of your business name, give owner and business contact information and a physical address for your business. You will declare the type of ownership of your business, whether you are a sole proprietor, a part of a larger corporation, in a limited liability partnership or limited liability corporation. If applicable, you will need to provide your contractor’s license or your seller’s permit number, such as for construction and electrical work. Next, you will need to have all of your specific business operations information available in great detail to answer the questions that the City of Albany has regarding how you will run the business, how many employees you will have, what products or services will you provide, and so forth. Once you have completely written in your business information, you will need to print your application and return it to the City of Albany, either in person or by mail to:

City of Albany
City Clerk, City Hall
Room 202
24 Eagle Street
Albany, NY 12207

Albany Business License

How long will my Albany business license be valid?

That depends entirely how long you plan to conduct business. The City of Albany has assessed fees on a staggered time basis so that you can select which option would work best for you. Once you have the business license application (they can be obtained online), you will see various time options and the corresponding fees.

What else should I do to receive my Albany business license?

All business owners are obligated to contact the City of Albany Department of Development and Planning for an inspection to be completed on your business property and to receive the necessary approval. This must occur prior to the remittance of any of the above permit applications. Both a Certificate of Occupancy will be required as well as the Certificate of Appropriateness. The first ensures that a safety checklist is accounted for and the second makes certain that your business location is properly suited for your business activity according to city guidelines.

City of Albany
Department of Development and Planning
24 Eagle Street
Albany, NY 12207
(518) 434-5265

For general planning information you may visit Albany Planning Department. The required forms for zoning are all available online at

If I need more information, who should I contact?

Contact the City Clerk’s Office for more information or to discuss questions regarding your desired business license. They can be reached via telephone at (518) 434-5090. The hours of operation are Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Alternately, you may want to visit them in person at:

City of Albany
City Clerk, City Hall
Room 202
24 Eagle Street
Albany, NY 12207

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This site is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal, financial or tax advise. The information on this site should not be relied upon as an official source of information and should be independently verified.


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