FAQ Topic: Business License Tax Holiday Program

I own a business entity that rents out a Santa Ana commercial property to a separate business entity owed/controlled by me, which operates from the premises it, rents. Are the rents my property owing entity receives from my business operating entity considered to be a business separate business? Do I have to have two separate business licenses?

Yes, a separate business license must be obtained when two separate legal entities are engaged in ongoing business activity. Each entity is a separate legal “person” under the Business License Tax Code and even where the underlying identify of the ownership of both businesses is the same, a requirement for each “person” doing business in … Continued

I am renting a Santa Ana commercial property to a master leaseholder who in turn rents out units to various business tenants. Is my receipt of rents during the term of the master lease still considered to be a business? Do I have to get a business license?

As an owner-lessor who retains ownership of the commercial property at the conclusion of the master lease term, you do need to obtain a Santa Ana business license and report the gross receipts (gross rents) derived from the master lease. The leaseholder-lessor who is renting out units of your commercial rental property pursuant to the … Continued

How is the Santa Ana commercial real estate rental business license tax assessed?

The business license tax for the rental of commercial real estate is assessed per property, based on the leasehold/ownership of the property. A separate business license is required for each separate commercial rental property location. The business license tax assessment is made on a gross receipts (gross rents) basis per property. A reduced basic tax … Continued

What does Santa Ana consider a “commercial real estate rental business”?

Municipal Code Section 21-3 defines the business of rental of commercial real estate as including every person, whether as an owner-lessor or leaseholder-lessor, engaged in the business of leasing, renting, subleasing, subletting, providing, exchanging or trading without loss of ownership or leasehold any real property, dwelling, building, structure, premises or portion thereof for industrial, commercial, … Continued

I am renting a Santa Ana residential property to family members is this still considered to be a business? Do I have to get a business license?

Renting to immediate family members related by blood, adoption or marriage is considered to be a business and a license is required. If you are renting only to immediate family members (mothers and fathers, grandmothers and grandfathers, sons and daughters, grandsons and granddaughters, brothers and sisters, and husbands and wives) and the amount you receive … Continued

How is the Santa Ana residential rental business license tax assessed?

The business license tax for the rental of residential real estate is assessed per property, based on the ownership of the property. A separate business license is required for each separate rental property location. The business license tax assessment is made on a per unit basis and reflects the maximum number of rentable units making … Continued

What does Santa Ana consider a “residential real estate rental business”?

Municipal Code Section 21-3 defines the business of rental of residential real estate as including every person who engages in the business of leasing, renting, subleasing, subletting, providing, exchanging or trading without loss of ownership or leasehold any residential property within the City for purposes of general residency.

Do I need a business license if I operate a commercially-based or home-based business specifically exempted by State or Federal Law?

No business license tax or other administrative fee is required for the operation of a commercially-based or home-based business specifically exempted by State or Federal Law. Supporting qualifying information establishing your business as specifically exempted must be furnished. A “Fee-Exempt” administrative business license shall be issued to qualifying exempted businesses.

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