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Getting Started

So you are thinking about starting a new business!  Congratulations!!  There are many resources to assist a new business and we are honored to assist you. Our history runs deep here, and we are a community of firsts. We hope that Rutherfordton becomes part of your entrepreneurial future.

Below is our new business information including resource lists for you.  There are many resources, but these resources are the basic guides and local agencies that can assist you in your new business.

Running your own business is exciting and sometimes overwhelming and we want to make it as painless as possible.  We can assist with a business plan, which is a roadmap for your business; tax information; legal references; financial planning and many other details that are required to make your new business a success. 

Please do not hesitate to call or visit if you need assistance, guidance or a listening ear.  We are here to help make your dream come true.


Isothermal Community College Small Business Center supports business development by providing training, counseling, and resource information.  For information on locations available in Rutherfordton, please call Rutherford Town Revitalization at (828) 287-2071.

The North Carolina Small Business & Technology Development Center has developed a comprehensive Business Start Up & Resource Guide for those who are considering starting a business or those looking for a guide to ensure you start the right way. Download the guide at the link below: 

NC Business Start-Up & Resource Guide 

Up & Growing

It is paramount to the Town of Rutherfordton to retain our businesses and to help them grow! It is our to mission to promote the continued growth and prosperity of our business partners. Your needs as a local business are important to us as the Town wants nothing more than for you to become stronger and more efficient. The success and long-term growth of existing industries is vital to Rutherfordton's economy. 

Ways we Can assist you Thrive in Rutherfordton: 
  • Connecting allies that provide services and programs in areas such as training, grants, financing, government contracting, technical assistance, export/international trade.
  • Supporting business expansion needs including financing, tax credits, utility and infrastructure support, worker training and recruiting.
  • Providing custom research and current data on business and statistical information such as area demographics, wage information, occupational and other trends.
  • Encouraging communication in the business community through visits, networking opportunities, press releases and focused seminars.
Town Hall is your one-stop portal to programs and resources offered through partnerships with local, regional, and state allies which may help your business Thrive in Rutherfordton! 

To schedule a visit for your business or to learn more about the Business Retention and Expansion Program - Contact the Town Manager Doug Barrick at 828-287-3520 ext 7 or 

Market Analysis 

Dig deeper into our market, area trends, the Rutherfordton trade areas, retail leakage & opportunities for business success. 
Rutherfordton Market Analysis 

Rutherfordton Quick Facts


  • Town Population: 4,213                                                                          
    • 1 Mile Radius:  9,196
    • 3 Mile Radius:  20,765
  • Median Age 44.6
  • Median Household Income $46,381
  • Cost of Living Index: 82.2
  • Ranked in the Top 50 Safest Cities in NC past 3 years running



Isothermal Community College Small Business Center :
Rutherford County Economic Development:
Rutherford County Chamber of Commerce:

Complementing the small town quality of life is the desirable growth of technological infrastructure in the area.  Fiber optic cable is present in Rutherfordton to allow for high speed internet service.   The area is also home to a Facebook Data Center and the NC State Data Center and the technological infrastructure needed to support the facility can also be attractive to other high-tech industries as well.  The technological demands of the 21st century economy are being met in Rutherfordton. 

Zoning / Ordinances

Prior to beginning any renovations or construction of signs or buildings, it is beneficial to review the local zoning codes and ordinances.

If you are planning to relocate or open a new business in the Town, contact the Zoning Code Enforcement Officer at (828) 287-7367 or Town Hall at (828)-287-3520 for assistance.

Municipal Service District (MSD) Tax or “Main Street Tax”

This tax contributes to the revitalization program to enhance the quality of downtown Rutherfordton by improving the physical, environmental, and business conditions in the downtown area. Bills are sent out in August, due in September, and interest begins accruing in January. The current municipal service tax rate is 13 ¢ per $100 of value. To review a map of the area included in this District, click here.

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