How to Start a Business in Florida

Entrepreneurs flock to Florida to realize their business ideas. It’s easy to start a business with the help of simplified regulations. Some business owners don’t even need a license. The 21+ million residents of Florida don’t pay any income tax. Florida’s economy is the fourth largest in the country with a GDP of nearly a trillion dollars.

Starting a Business in Florida – 3 FAQs

  1. What is the cost of starting a Florida business? The type of business you choose will determine the cost to start a Florida business. For example, an LLC starts at $125. It’s $70 for a corporation. These costs include the price of a registered agent.
  2. Is there a great place to start a Florida business? Florida is known for its business-friendly reputation. Many factors go into deciding the best location for your business. The most populous areas, such as Tampa, St. Petersburg, and Miami, can offer many opportunities to score customers.
  3. What tax and business regulations are required in Florida? Florida is known as a tax-friendly place. Taxes can be complicated and intricate. To learn more about taxes in Florida for corporations and LLCs, it is a good idea to contact a licensed tax specialist. For more information, you can visit Florida’s Department of State website.

Why Florida businesses are worth starting

Florida is home to a large workforce, as well as an innovative business climate. This promotes private equity investment, workforce training and women-owned businesses. You will be in good company with more than 2,000,000 small businesses. It is easy to network with other entrepreneurs.

1: Select Your Florida Business Entity Type

You must file your entity type to Florida if you want to start a business. How you run your business, and the taxes you have to pay will be affected by how well structured you are. Visit our list of the best LLC services.

You have the option to choose from a variety of business entities

These business structures are available to you:

  • Florida Limited Liability Company (LLC)
  • Florida Professional Limited Liability Company
  • Florida Corporation
  • Florida Nonprofit Corporation

Where to file your entity

Online filings can be made at the Florida Department of State website. You can pay the fee online or by cheque for each filing.

2: Search for a business name

Before you file paperwork with the state, you must have a unique business name. The state could reject your business application if you do not have a unique business name. Visit Florida’s business name search page

After you have chosen a name and filed your application, the state will send a certificate to you. This certificate is also known as a certificate in good standing. This document serves as legal proof that you are authorized to conduct business in Florida.

3: Register Your Business In Florida

Do a business entity search

Before you can do anything else, your business name must be chosen. Your entity type will form part of your business name. The entity type will be added to the end of your business name (e.g. “Limited Liability Company”, L.L.C , “LLC” and “LLC” are all examples of entity types. You will need to conduct an entity search in order to ensure that you are allowed to use the chosen business name. The entity search tool will let you know if the name you prefer is available for free. No name reservations are available in Florida.

Select Your Entity Type

Your business structure will impact how your business runs and the taxes you pay.

File as a Foreign Entity if necessary

You must file as a foreign company if you are representing an existing company and wish to do business here. When filing, foreign entities must attach a Certificate to Good Standing. You must mail the Certificate to foreign entities if you file online. This step can be skipped by domestic entities or Florida-based entities.

4. Pay the Florida Business Filing fees

You will need to pay a filing fee when you file your paperwork for business formation. Online filings require that you pay the fee with a credit card. Send your paperwork by mail. The check should include the registration fee and filing fee. When you send in your forms, include the check. It will be sent to the following addresses:


Mailing address:

Department of State: Division of Corporations and Corporate Filings

P.O. Box 6327

Tallahassee, FL 32314


Courier Address:

Department of State

Division of Corporations, Clifton Building

2661 Executive Center Circle

Tallahassee, FL 32301

These fees include Florida registered agents designation fees

  • All companies- $70
  • All LLCs- $125
  • GP-$50
  • LP-$1000
  • LLP-$25
  • LLLP-$1000

5: Florida Name Reservation

Florida currently does not permit you to reserve your company name. Other states allow business owners to reserve a company name before they register their business. Names are assigned on a first-come first-serve basis in Florida since this option is not available. When a business files for incorporation, it secures its name. We recommend conducting a Business Entity Search to ensure your preferred name is in stock.

Different names can be used for your business. You could, for example, have a primary business name and then apply for a DBA to market. DBA stands for “doing Business As.” Any company that uses a name other than the legal name must file DBA. Your DBA is the official record that your company can do business under this name. A Florida DBA can be filed with the Florida Division of Corporations.

6: Florida Certificate Of Status

The Certificate Of Status is proof that you have complied with Florida state law. This document is used to help business owners renew their licenses or get loans. It is a document that helps business owners qualify for loans or renew their licenses.

If you are a Florida resident and wish to open a Florida business, you may need a certificate. The Secretary of State may request a certificate to register your business.

A downloadable certificate can be found on the Florida Department of State’s website. A certificate can be requested upon initial filing with Florida. It costs around $8.75

7: Operating agreements

An operating agreement is a document that establishes the business relationship between owners and/or members of the board. It also outlines the relationship between the members and the business. It outlines how each member will manage and govern the business. The agreement also details the rights and responsibilities for each managing member.

8: Employer Identification number

Once you have filed with the state, you will need to apply for an IRS Federal Employer Identification Number. Your business is legally identified for tax purposes by the EIN. EINs are required for all financial transactions. In Florida, it is illegal to hire employees without an EIN.

It is crucial to file for an EIN.

9: Register your Florida Business and Open a Business Bank account

The industry, location, and type of business you want to register will determine how you do it. While you will file your LLC with the state of Florida, certain sole proprietors may not require registration. Florida counties and cities may also have different registration requirements. Check with the local government offices.

To find out what licenses are required, visit the State of Florida Business & Regulation website. Your registered agent can help you to stay compliant.

This number is your taxpayer identification number. It helps you with everything, from opening bank accounts to paying payroll taxes. This could be your social insurance number. For an employer ID number (EIN), other types of businesses must apply to the IRS. One can also be applied for by sole props.

Register for a Business Bank Account

You will need to register your domain name and finalize your business insurance. A bank account must be opened for your business.

It is important to keep your business and personal expenses separate. You can track your business finances with a business bank account. This helps you to simplify the tax process when it comes time for filing. You can also make credit card payments from a business account. This is not possible with a personal savings or checking account. A bank account can make it easier for you to sell your business when you are ready.

10: Market your Florida business

Your most basic form marketing is a website. It is also the most important. Your website provides information to potential customers about your products and services. They can also use the website to make purchases, request information, or schedule appointments.

Print marketing materials such as brochures, business cards and postcards can be printed. These are tangible ways to get your message and brand out there.

Word of mouth is timeless. Ask customers to refer you to others as you interact with them. Encourage customers to leave positive reviews on your Google Business page. As a way of showing gratitude for customers who spread the word, you might consider setting up rewards programs.

Make sure you reserve your business on online directories such as Google My Business. What is social media? Create a plan for engagement and content that keeps customers engaged. It’s not enough to do it all alone.

Florida’s Best Businesses to Start

Florida has many opportunities for new businesses, from tried-and-true firms to innovative industries. These ideas will help you to plan your journey to becoming a successful entrepreneur.

  • Commercial and residential cleaning
  • Food truck
  • Handyman
  • Transport for non-emergency medical needs
  • Companion care
  • Catering
  • Landscaping and lawn maintenance
  • Pool cleaning
  • Bakery
  • Watercraft rental

Your business can shine brightly in the Sunshine State

Florida is home to many companies but there are still plenty of opportunities for you. You can start your Florida business within days if you have a business plan and an understanding of the industry.

Florida Start a Business FAQs

  1. What is the cost of starting a Florida business? The type of business you choose will determine the cost to start a Florida business. For example, an LLC starts at $125. It’s $70 for a corporation. These costs include the price of a registered agent.
  2. Is there a great place to start a Florida business? Florida is known for its business-friendly reputation. There are many factors that go into deciding the best location for your business. The most populous areas, such as Tampa, St. Petersburg, and Miami, can offer many opportunities to score customers.
  3. What tax and business regulations are required in Florida? Florida is known as a tax-friendly place. Taxes can be complicated and intricate. To learn more about taxes in Florida for corporations and LLCs, it is a good idea to contact a licensed tax specialist. For more information, you can visit Florida’s Department of State website.

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