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Standards for Home Occupations


Home Occupations are small-scale businesses and services within a private residence which are secondary to the residential use of the site, and which meet certain standards to ensure compatibility with surrounding residential uses. Home Occupations differ from Live/Work uses in that they do not permit any non-resident employees, and are more limited in the type of uses permitted and the number of visitors allowed.


Home Occupations may be conducted in homes in agricultural and residential zones (LIA, LEA, DA, RRD, AR, RR, R1, R2, and R3), planned community zones (PC), and commercial zones which allow residential uses (CO, C1, C2, C3, LC, RC, AS, and K). 

Permit Requirements

A Zoning Permit and signed agreement to comply with the standards are required.

Development Standards


Only residents of the home. 


No more than 25 percent of the area of the home, or 500 square feet of a garage or accessory structure. 

Hours of Operation

Monday through Friday, 8:00 am – 6:00 pm. No holidays. 

Technical Codes

Building must meet all Code requirements for occupancy classification. Building and Well & Septic division clearance required. 

Exterior Appearance

No change in the residential character of the site. 


One additional space plus demonstration of adequate parking for any customers or clients.


Maximum of four per day, and no more than two onsite at a time. Maximum of ten deliveries/pickups per week.


One attached, non-illuminated, maximum two square foot sign.

Commercial Vehicles

One single-ton or smaller vehicle permitted to be kept at site. 

Outdoor Storage/Use

Not permitted. 

Offsite Effects

Offsite noise, odors, dust, smoke, etc., are prohibited. 

Allowed Uses

  • Art and craft work or cottage industries, such as painting, ceramics, or woodworking
  • Office-only uses such as architects, attorneys, consultants
  • One-on-one services such as counseling, massage therapy
  • Tailoring and sewing

Prohibited Uses

  • Adult entertainment
  • Pet care services and kennels
  • Vehicle repair
  • Cabinet or furniture making or sales
  • Storage yards
  • Food processing
  • Catering
  • Gun and weapon sales
  • Salons and day spas
  • Uses that involve hazardous materials
  • Uses that trigger building changes to conform with building code requirements

Contact Information

Permit Sonoma
2550 Ventura Avenue
Hearing Room
Santa Rosa, CA 95403
38.465074, -122.723705

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