A DBA name (also known as “assumed name”) is not required but if you want to use, you must register the name with the State of Texas as well as the county where your business is located (this will be the county you live in if you’re home based). DBA names allow you to operate under a different name than what you registered your LLC name as with the State.
If you’ve already registered a DBA name for your LLC and TREC has issued the license for your LLC, then see this post for steps on registering your DBA name with TREC. Otherwise, continue below for instructions on how to setup your DBA name.
The State registration will cost $25 and the county registration varies by county but typically $20-25.
Before sending in any forms, you must first make sure the name you want to use is available with the Secretary of State and with the county clerk’s office in the county that you operate.
Choosing a Name
The DBA name does not have to include the “LLC” in it but must be available for use. For example, your actual company name could be “My Company, LLC” and you can register a DBA name like “Texas Agents” as long as no one else is using that name.
Steps to Register DBA Name With the State of Texas
For the state registration, go to https://www.sos.state.tx.us/corp/forms_boc.shtml and download form #503. When completing the form, use the following as a reference:
- Assumed Name: this is the DBA name that you want to use
- Legal Name: this is your actual LLC name. Be sure to write out the entire name including the “LLC”
- Limited Liability Company
- File number: this will be on the formation paperwork you received back from the State when forming your LLC. If you’re sending in this form at the same time you’re sending in the form to create your LLC, you won’t have a file number.
- Texas (assuming your LLC was originally formed in Texas)
- Entire your office address
- Period of duration: choose the first option for 10 years
- Select “all counties”
Follow the instructions on the form for submitting. You can send this form in at the same time you’re sending in the documents to form or amend your LLC. For more information, refer to the SOS site and see their FAQ.
Steps to Register DBA Name With Your County
To register with the county, you can usually find the form on the county clerk’s website – if not, you’ll need to call them. From what we’ve seen, counties typically refer to this as an “assumed name” but you may also see it called “fictitious name”.
Once you’ve registered the DBA name with the state and county, follow the instructions here to register the name with TREC.
NOTE: You must register your DBA name with TREC before advertising or attempting to perform any real estate activities as that name. It is against the law if you don’t.