Learn how to apply for a boat dealer license.
The applicant/licensee must comply with all applicable laws and rules, even if not covered below.
Who needs a license?
Each business location that sells watercraft (other than human-powered watercraft) that is:
- Under 16 feet in length
- Unable to be powered by a motor or the wind, and
- Not designed for use on commonly used navigable waters
Business site requirements
To get a vehicle and boat dealer license, your business site must:
- Comply with all applicable building codes, zoning, and other land-use ordinances. For more information, please contact your city or county directly.
- Be located in an office in an enclosed building where you can conduct business and maintain records.
- Have an exterior sign with the business name and the type of business (such as marine sales).
How to apply
Note: We issue this license, but it's processed by the Department of Revenue's Business Licensing Service (BLS). BLS prints it on the business license they provide. They refer to licenses issued by us as endorsements to the business license.
Gather the necessary documents
- Supporting documents shown below, ready for upload.
- If applying by mail:
- Visa, MasterCard or American Express credit/debit card (transaction fee charged) or bank account information for E-check to pay:
- Applicable BLS fees
- Boat dealer license and decal fees
Supporting documents for your application
- $5,000 bond
- Provide Vehicle, Vessel Dealer Business Bond or form from a bonding company.
- Bonds are available through insurance companies.
- The principal name must be exactly the same as both the business owner and business firm name.
- Bond must be signed by the applicant and the attorney-in-fact for the bonding company.
- If you sell 15 or fewer boats per year with a retail value of no more than $2,000 each, you don't need a surety bond.
- Personal Criminal History Statement for each owner, officer, or member of the business.
Submit your application
Submit your application online
Submit your application by mail
Mail your completed forms, supporting documents, and a check/money order payable to the Department of Revenue for the BLS fees and boat dealer license and plate fees to:
State of Washington
Business Licensing Service
PO Box 9034
Olympia, WA 98507-9034
After you receive your license
You must post a license at each location where you operate. You may not begin business activity until you receive the required license.