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Opening a Barbershop

Steps to Opening a Barbershop

When you open a barbershop in Minnesota, you are establishing a business.  Here are the steps to ensure that your shop opening succeeds:

  • Obtain an application for barbershop registration from the Minnesota Board of Barber Examiners to use as a guide. The application can be printed out or downloaded from here. If you have any questions about the application, please contact the Barber Board office at 651-201-2820.
  • Have you found the shop location? The Board requires verification that the local building and zoning authority has reviewed and approved the location to insure that it meets all zoning requirements. You will need to have the Building and Zoning authority for the community in which the shop is located sign off on the shop location in the Board's new shop application.
  • All businesses in Minnesota are required to register with the Secretary of State. In order to register, you need to choose a business structure: sole proprietorship (individual owner), general partnership, Limited Liability Partnership, corporation, or Limited Liability Company.
  • Have you decided on what you will name your shop? You will also need to register the shop's name with the Secretary of State's office. Contact the Secretary of State's office at 651-296-2803 or 1-877-551-6767, or
  • You will need to register for a Minnesota Tax ID number for your business. You can do this at the Minnesota Department of Revenue
  • Once you have the shop location and registered your business with the Secretary of State, you will need to apply for a barbershop registration with the Minnesota Board of Barber Examiners. All barbershops must be registered in Minnesota before opening for business. The application can be printed out or downloaded from here. If you have any questions about the application, please contact the Barber Board office at 651-201-2820.
  • If you are a hair salon already licensed by the Board of Cosmetology and you would like to have a registered barber work in your salon, the salon will need to also be registered as a barbershop by the Board of Barber Examiners. You will need to complete a new barbershop application and submit it with the fee to the Board. A registered barbershop that would like a cosmetologist to work in the shop will need to be licensed as a salon by the Board of Cosmetology and should contact that Board ( or 651-201-2742) for the license application and process.

Other Things to Consider

  • Before establishing any business, it's advisable to seek both legal counsel and advice from an accountant.
  • You will need to carry various kinds of insurance such as property, liability, and employee insurance for Workers Compensation and unemployment.
  • Are you planning to be a one-barber barbershop or hire barbers to work with you? Every licensed barbershop must have a registered barber as the designated barber to manage the shop, especially when there is more than one barber working in the shop. As the owner, you will need to consider whether or not you will hire barbers as your employees or work with independent contractor barbers.
  • For help with the taxes on your barbershop business, you may want to consult an accountant or tax specialist.

For more information about establishing a business in Minnesota, consult the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development's publication A Guide to Starting a Business in Minnesota and/or online at

Do I Have to be a Registered Barber to Own a Barbershop?  

No, you don't need to be a registered barber to own a barbershop. However, in Minnesota, you must be a registered barber in order to work in a barbershop.

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