How to Start a Business

Nearly ten percent of the households in Canterbury operate home based businesses. In addition, approximately one hundred conventional businesses also operate in town. Canterbury’s Economic Development Commission is here to help you start a business, expand an existing business, and succeed in town.

Why do business in Canterbury?

  • Highly educated/skilled work force
  • Reasonably priced real estate
  • Fantastic telecommunications infrastructure (20MB+ connections)
  • Loyal customer base
  • A demand for additional businesses and services (retail, agriculture, professional) to serve the public
  • Convenient shipping/transit options
  • Rural setting with close proximity to Hartford and surrounding states (New York, Rhode Island, Massachusetts)

3 Easy Steps to Success

  1. Start with the State. Connecticut’s Smart Start – www.ct-clic.com or (800) 392-2122. Connecticut is unique in that the State has advisors who will look into all aspects of licensing requirements proactively so that your operations will be legal. Depending on the type of business (i.e. retail, construction trades, professional), you will be sent a package with all of the requirements to operate legally (license requirements, tax information, etc.).
  2. Come to Town Hall.
    a.    Visit Land Use Director Steve Sadlowski and Land Use Secretary Melissa Gil (860) 546-6857. Describe your intentions and type of business. As of 2009, the Land Use Director can approve many home based business applications on the spot. Depending on the type and location of the business, there might be other requirements to explore.
    b.    Visit the Town Clerk Natalie Riemann (860) 546-9377. Describe your intentions and ask for a Certificate of Adoption of Trade Name (also known as a Trade Name Certificate). This helps to identify the name of your business and record it into town records (a nominal $5 recording fee applies). This certificate is also required to open a bank account with your company name. This will also initiate tax assessment for minimal business property taxes. If you have questions about taxes, visit or call the Tax Assessor, Jennifer York (860) 546-6035.
  3. Gather Community Support.
    a.    Call the Chairman of Economic Development (860) 546-9199. He can help drum up community support, assist with networking, and advise of business opportunities. Depending on the type of business, Avery can also schedule/host ribbon cutting ceremonies and advise you of other local resources that your business might need (i.e. retail space/real estate, financing, vendor contacts, etc.)

Download the Brochure

Visit the Canterbury Business Form Page to review and download forms.