Home-Based Business Regulation Review

The City of Nanaimo is in the process of reviewing the home-based business regulations in Zoning Bylaw 4500. The update is intended to modernize the regulations to support home-based businesses while balancing the needs of the neighbourhoods in which they operate.

What is a home-based business? A home-based business can be either:

  • a business operated AT home - where most of the work of the business is carried out at the home of the operator(s); or
  • a business operated FROM home - where the home is used as a base, but much of the work is done outside the home.

There are approximately 2,300 licensed home-based businesses operating in the city today, providing approximately 3,400 jobs and covering a wide range of sectors of the economy.




  • Progress

    Home-Based Business Regulations Update Process:

    1. Reviewed current regulations, identified key issues, gaps and opportunities.
    2. Review home-based business regulations of several BC municipalities, identifying best regulatory practices.
    3. Formed a Home-Based Business Consultation Group (HBBCG), consisting of City staff, that interact with businesses on a regular basis. The HBBCG included staff from Economic Development, Business Licensing, Planning and Bylaw and Transportation divisions.
    4. Held meetings with HBBCG to gather suggestions and identify any issues or feedback shared by home-based business owners to date.
    5. Reviewed findings and relevant comments from the Home-Based Business Needs Assessment Survey in July 2018.
    6. Compiled and synthesized all research and updated the proposed new home-based business regulations.
    7. Held a meeting with the chairs of various Neighbourhood Associations and the Chamber of Commerce to solicit initial feedback.
    8. An Open House was held in December 2018, a survey was also available to gain feedback from the information provided at the open house.
    9. Review findings and comments from the open house survey and prepare a report on the survey outcome to share with the public.
    10. Proceed to Council to provide with the information gathered from the Home-Based Business Regulation Review
    11. Return to an upcoming Council meeting with amendments to Zoning Bylaw 2011 No. 4500, Sign Bylaw 1987 No. 2850 and Off-Street Parking Regulations Bylaw 2018 No. 7266 relating to the home-based business regulations.
  • Documents
  • Details

    Proposed Zoning Bylaw Amendments

    1. New Classification System
    2. Location and Size
    3. Vehicle Trips
    4. Non-Resident Employees on Premises
    5. Hours of Operation
    6. Signage
    7. Permitted/Prohibited Uses
    8. Parking and Access
  • Background

    At the 2016-APR-11 Committee of the Whole meeting, Council received delegations pertaining to a proposed home-based bakery business. After receiving the delegations, Council directed Staff to review the City's home-based business regulations and prepare a report for Council.

Help us improve our website

Don't include private or financial information in this form.

Collection and use of your personal information

Information collected on this form is done so under the general authority of the Community Charter and Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FOIPPA), and is protected in accordance with FOIPPA. Questions about the collection of your personal information may be referred to the Legislative Services Department at 250-755-4405, or via email at foi@nanaimo.ca. Please also see our Privacy Policy.