The Tiny house Blog

A Tiny House Builder's Guide to LLC Formation

Updated on:
May 28, 2024
tiny home builder

Many startups prefer the LLC business structure for its simplicity and flexibility. If you want to start a tiny house business, consider forming an LLC. It offers many advantages, including tax benefits and asset protection.

It secures your personal assets from business-related liabilities and taxes. This way, you don't have to lose other investments when your LLC becomes bankrupt. The best part is that they combine the excellent attributes of corporations, partnerships, and sole proprietorships to give the best structure. Forming a tiny house LLC requires careful planning and research, which may be challenging without the right professional help.

With that said, here are the steps to follow when forming a tiny house LLC:

1. Research and Plan

According to Northwest LLC reviews, the first order of business is researching and planning before you start the formation. You must understand the pros and cons of choosing an LLC structure for your tiny house business. It may offer asset protection and tax benefits such as deductions on business expenses, pass-through taxation, and flexible tax classification, but it also has its advantages. These include ownership transfer restrictions, limited lifespan, and formation complexity in some states.

Also, research the legal requirements for tiny house LLC formation as they differ from state to state. Many states are becoming stricter with the tiny house business as the number of people choosing small homes increases. Some require more paperwork and documentation while others charge higher formation fees.

For instance, Colorado's tiny home rules and regulations categorize these homes as recreational vans. However, the construction must meet the local building code standards. Therefore, ensure you understand the zoning rules and regulations in your state of formation and fees to get your finances in order.

2. Name Your LLC

You can name your business once you're satisfied that forming an LLC is the best move for your tiny house startup. It's a crucial step when forming an LLC in any business niche. You must choose a name representing tiny houses, ensuring you abide by the state's naming guidelines. The requirements in most regions include the following:

  • You must include ‘Limited Liability Company’ or the abbreviation ‘LLC’ in the name
  • The name must be unique in your state of formation, with an available URL (the URL will come in handy when creating an online presence for your tiny houses)
  • It must be distinguishable from government agencies such as the State Department and the Treasury.

You can check the name's availability on the Secretary of State's website. Also, ensure you confirm with the local authority for any additional guidelines.

3. Hire a Registered Agent

The next step when forming your tiny house LLC is appointing a registered agent. It's a requirement by all states to have a registered agent to form an LLC. They're the bridge between you and the state where all documentation and paperwork get through. They send and receive crucial documents like tax statements, government correspondence documents, and lawsuits on behalf of your LLC.

You can appoint an individual or business entity the state acknowledges. You can also be your own agent. However, this isn't advisable as it may divert your attention from focusing on your tiny houses.

For one to qualify as a registered agent in any state, they must meet the following:

  • They must be over 18 years
  • The agent must have a physical address in the region of formation
  • They must be a resident registered in your state of formation 
  • The registered agent must be available during working hours to receive and send official documents 

Remember to look for an experienced, reputable agent who understands zoning laws and other tiny house LLC formation regulations.

4. File Articles Of Organization

Filing the articles of organization or certificate of formation will be a walk in the park with the right professional help. They're official formation documents you must file with the State Department when forming an LLC for your tiny house business.

You can file them in person, online, via email, or fax. Depending on your state, you must also pay a specific filing fee. However, you must provide your business details like name, address, members, purpose, and the management structure to create your LLC. Therefore, this is probably the best time to decide whether your tiny house LLC will be member or manager-managed.

A member-managed LLC is one with fewer members who are willing to participate in business operations. On the other hand, a manager-manager LLC contains many members who don't want to engage in decision-making. Instead, they appoint a person or a few members to do it on their behalf.

5. Establish An Operating Agreement

After filing the articles of organization, the next step is creating an operating agreement. It may be optional in most states, but having one is always advisable. This may be because they outline your tiny houses' operating procedures, including the following:

  • Ownership and leadership
  • Profit and loss sharing ratio
  • Duties and responsibilities of each member
  • Dissolution terms

This helps minimize conflicts among members due to miscommunication or unclear instructions. Therefore, regardless of it not being a legal requirement, creating an operating agreement for your tiny house business is crucial.

llc formation guide

6. Get EIN from IRS

Your tiny house LLC isn't wholly formed without an Employer Identification Number (EIN). It's a requirement by all states to obtain. The EIN is the social security number the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issues to businesses. It allows the IRS to track business operations and their tax status easily. You'll need this number to file taxes, open a business bank account, and obtain insurance. Therefore, ensure you get EIN for your tiny house LLC to be operational.

7. Obtain Additional Licenses and Permits

You'll also need permits and licenses, including zoning approvals, construction permits, and contractor licenses. Ensure you check with the local authority and federal agencies to know the permits you need to be operational. And if you're working with a qualified registered agent, obtaining these licenses can be easy as they know their way around the processes.

8. Insure Your Tiny House LLC

Insuring your tiny house LLC isn't part of the formation process but is crucial for all businesses. Accidents are bound to happen, and you'll need insurance to protect your LLC against liabilities. Some insurance types you want to consider are: 

  • General Liability Insurance: This covers public property damage and injury. For instance, it offers protection when one of your tiny houses on the move hits a dog crossing the road or when one of your staff damages public properties. Such liabilities can be expensive, and you'd want the right insurance.
  • Commercial Property Cover: You'll need commercial property coverage to cover losses from natural disasters, theft, and fire. It'll be unfortunate to invest your finances in tiny houses only to lose them in a flood simply because you want to save some money on insurance.
  • Workers Compensation: These are compensations offered to your team for lost wages or when they get injured or sick from a work-related cause. It also provides death and disability benefits as some injuries result in death or physical disability.
  • Commercial Auto Coverage: As mentioned, tiny houses are considered recreational vans, and all commercial vehicles should have commercial auto insurance. It covers damage and losses when your tiny house gets into an accident.
  • Professional Liability Insurance: This coverage protects you from negligence claims from your clients when they're unsatisfied with your tiny house's stability and functionality.

Remember, the limited liability protection the business liability protection the LLC offers is for your personal and not business assets. Therefore, ensure you insure your tiny house company.


Forming an LLC for your tiny house business is a worthwhile investment. It has many benefits, including tax deductions and personal asset protection. However, it's crucial to do your due diligence to understand the rules and regulations in different states. Also, consider hiring a registered agent to help you navigate the formation process easily, from filing articles of organization to obtaining business insurance. Generally, you can make informed decisions and get through complex situations by following this guide.

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