Setting Up & Registering a Limited Company
Registering a company is a one off cost of £12 and done through Companies House (both an umbrella company and a limited company are a registered legal entity with Companies House).
However, there are a few different ways that you can get this fee waved with other business services that you need.
We'll walk you through how to register your company for free and the perks that you'll get with each.
Registering a company is a one off cost of £12 and done through Companies House. However, there are a few different ways that you can get this fee waved with other business services that you need.
We'll walk you through how to register a limited company for free, and the perks that you'll get with each.
Before we get started, one of the key questions we often get asked is: "Should I register for a limited company, or become self employed?"
To help you decide, we have put together a limited Company vs sole trader calculator here. It takes just a minute to complete, and you can book a free consultation where we can walk you through everything you need to know.
Free Ways to Register Limited Companies
1. GoForma Community Account
You can create a free GoForma community account, and we'll help you register your company for free.
We offer a select number of free company registrations each month, and do it on an application process - we really want to help young startup founders, BAME founders and women in business.
If you are eligible, and are selected for a free company registration, we'll help walk you through the process. You can then complete the application in your dashboard. We'll then submit to Companies House, handle official communications, and pay your filing fee.
Alongside your free community account, we provide a free accounting consultation, hundreds of free guides on small business accounting, limited companies, tax and optimizing a virtual office in London.
We'll then introduce you to different partners for insurance, banking partners, and more depending on your needs as a small business.
It's easy to get started and takes about 30 seconds to create an account!
2. GoForma Virtual Office
When you register a limited company, personal information such as your registered office address will be publicly available on Companies House.
As an example, here's Gordon Ramsay's Director profile.
You can see his "correspondence address". If this was your home address, then anyone would be able to see it. Of course, his profile doesn't show his actual address - he uses a business mailing address in London.
We provide a London Virtual office, which you can use as your company's virtual business address so you're not sharing your personal details. We'll also scan and forward on any company mail your receive.
For only £25/month, we can take care of your mail and keep your home address off of public records.
You'll get a registered central London office address in Faringdon (EC1R) which you can use as your correspondence address, and also on your website and marketing materials to establish a more professional presence in London.
We include free company registration with this and will manage all your incoming mail.
3. GoForma Accounting Package
Ok, this is the last plug we'll provide. If neither the potential free registration with a community account or our London virtual office company registration doesn't appeal, you can sign up for an accounting package with us.
We provide all your key basic filing requirements (confirmation statements, annual accountants, basic payroll, corporation tax, P11D) for £59/mo + VAT. This also includes access to FreeAgent accounting software and their mobile app for sending invoices easily.
If you need help with more complex requirements like VAT returns and Self Assessments then we also provide this and more for £89/mo + VAT.
Not only do you get your company registration included, you also get a free 30-day trial, free accounting consultation and you can even WhatsApp your accountant.
You can explore this further at the links below:
- Build Bespoke Accounting Package
- Schedule Free 30 Minute Accounting Consultation
- Start a Free 30 Day Trial of our Start Package
- Small Business Accounting Support
4. Accounting Providers
It's good to explore other accounting providers and get a quote as you'll need support with your annual accounts, confirmation statements, corporation tax and corporation tax filings.
As said above, this is something we can help with, from only £59/mo + VAT (you also get a £10/mo discount with select bank accounts).
Assessing whether an accountant will provide a free company registration with your new package can be a good indicator of how much value they provide.
Some providers will include it but others can charge £50 or more. DO NOT pay that much for a business registration!
Here's a few places to find some accounting providers that can included free company registration:
- FreeAgent accountants
- Find an accountant near me
- Xero accountants
- Bark accountant quotes
- Vouched For accountants
- Free GoForma Accounting Consultation
5.Business Address and Virtual Office Providers
As mentioned above, when you register your new UK Limited Company, your correspondence and director address will appear on your company profile.
For some it doesn't matter but for others it can be a security concern. As an example, we recently registered a company for someone who has a company with expensive audio equipment. They wanted to use our London address as they had heard that burglars look for specific SIC codes (industry codes that describe your company activity) on Companies House and can see where you might be storing your equipment
Our office has round the clock security (and their equipment isn't here) so it provided some safety to them.
There are a range of Virtual Office providers like Regus, DaVinci, ServCorp and Hoxton Mix where you can find locations. Some of them provide your company registration for free.
Companies House Registration
If none of the free company registration options are appealing then you can register your company quickly with the "old school" way of forming it directly with Companies House.
6. Companies House Registration
The process to register a limited company with Companies House is fairly simple and takes about 24 hours once you submit your application.
It costs £12 and you can register a company here.
7. Tide Business Bank Account
You'll need a business bank account for your new company to properly track your income and expenses. There's a range of different business bank accounts available, but one of the fastest to set up is a Tide business bank account.
With our unique relationship at Tide, we're also able to offer £50 when you open a paid or free business bank account with them.
Opening a business account takes just a few minutes. The process is completely digital, and you'll have no transaction fees for your first year (which then rise to 20p per transaction).
Limited Company Formation Agents
8.Companies House Recommended Agents
Companies House has a list of recommended agents who integrate with their software (some of these are free company formation tools) and that you can use for your own business.
The prices can vary for each provider but they can offer things like rapid company formations.
You can find a list of registration agents here.
9.Company Registration Agents
Company registration agents can be a pretty quick way to get your company registered and the often have a few partnerships with various banks and insurance providers.
We also have partnerships with the below Companies (which we have tried and tested):
We'd recommend definitely double checking their TrustPilot reviews before as some don't always have the best quality score.