Setting up a business

Are you starting a new business or expanding or buying an existing business in Nillumbik? 

You may need to get approval from Nillumbik Shire Council to do certain activities. This can include specific business permits or registrations for your business type. 

Watch the video below for an overview of the process and how we can help.

Infographic - Business Approvals - Digital (short version) 2022.jpg


How to apply for business permits and registrations

Before you apply

Before you apply for permits or registrations for your business, spend some time getting prepared. 

Step 1.Make a business plan

You will need to be able to describe the type of business you want to set up and how it will operate in some detail. 

Step 2.Do background research

Step 3.Register for online services

Before you complete the business permit questionnaire, you will need to register for access to Council's online portal.

Please note:

  • You will need to select 'applicant' as your customer type
  • Most registrations are approved within one business day
  • You will only need to register once - you will then have access to lodge future applications and other requests online

Register for Council's online services 

Step 4.Complete our business permit questionnaire

Once you have completed the questionnaire, Council will make contact with you to discuss what types of permits you will need.

Business Permit Questionnaire

When you apply

When you have identified the permits and registrations you need, you can start the application process.

Step 1.Submit your permit applications/s 

You need to submit applications for each permit that applies to your business. 

Permit type More information
Planning Apply for a planning permit

Apply for a building permit

Environmental Health

Register your food business

Register your health and beauty business

Register your accommodation business

Get wastewater system permit

Community safety Get a footpath trading permit

Register your domestic animal business


Step 2.Council assesses your permit application/s

Once your permit application form has been submitted, we will begin assessing your application.

A team member from each relevant department will be assigned to your application, and they will contact you to:

  • advise the expected timelines to assess your application
  • confirm the final fees and payment details
  • request further information (if required). To avoid delays in processing your application, please respond to any requests promptly.

To check on the status of your application, you can contact:

  • the team member assigned to your application, or
  • the Economic Development team

Step 3.Council approves or declines your permit application/s

Once we have finished our assessment, we will be in touch to confirm our decision.

If your application is approved, we will email you a copy of your permit or registration and, where appropriate, hard copies will also be mailed to you.

When you are ready to open the doors, our Economic Development team will connect you with services that will help your business to grow and succeed.

Thank you for choosing Nillumbik as a place to start or grow your business!



  • There are a range of permits or registrations you might need for your business.
  • The fees and charges will depend on your proposed business activities and type of business.
  • After you submit your application, a team member from the relevant department will contact you to confirm costs. 
Permit type Examples  Fee information
Planning Permits for:
  • subdividing land
  • use of land
  • use of building for business
  • displaying signs
  • street trading
  • other statutory planning requirements.
View current statutory planning fees

Permits that relate to the:

  • method of construction of a building or development
  • use of the building to ensure it meets relevant building codes.

Building permit fees are determined on a case by case basis taking into consideration the scope of the project, mandatory inspections required and the cost of the works.

For more information, see: Apply for a building permit.

Environmental Health

Registration and certificates for:

  • wastewater and septic systems
  • food premises
  • accommodation premises
  • hairdressers
  • beauty premises
  • tattoo premises.
Environmental Health Schedule of Fees and Charges 2020/2021(PDF, 171KB)
Community Safety Permits for:
  • traders' parking 
  • domestic animal businesses
  • footpath trading (including furniture, display items or A frames)
Fees vary depending on the specific permit. For more information, see: details of traders parking, domestic animal business and footpath trading