Company formation agent vs. DIY

If you’re looking to start your own business then there are a number of steps that must be followed before your company will officially exist. Creating a limited company necessitates registering with Companies House, the company registrar within the United Kingdom. There are a couple of standards that must be met for such a company to be considered legal, in accordance with the Companies Act 2006.
Literally, thousands of companies are enlisted with Companies House every year, and that list now numbers in the millions. DIY company formation is totally possible, or on the other hand you may work with a formation agent. There’s a good and bad side to each of them.

DIY Company Formation
Forming a limited company all by yourself is no doubt a herculean task and if you don’t have knowledge of company law lingo or some legal understanding it may be a very time-consuming and complicated experience. Here’s what you need to properly register you company:

  • Shareholder(s) – Usually for a nascent company a director will act as both;
  • A Company Director – at least 1 person, 16 years of age and above;
  • A Company Secretary – (Optional, Since October 2009)
  • A Company Name – use a company name search tool to be sure yours is available for use.
  • Companies House Form IN01 – could be gotten online.
  • Memorandum of Association – A legally binding company document
  • Articles of Association – holds details of the management of the company.
  • Money – You may spend up to £20 (or £50 for express service); this excludes postage fees and others.
  • Time

From the list above, you have a grasp as to what you’ll need; you also need to draw out a plan on how your company will be run, amongst other things like distribution of shares, office location, company name. You can download the form from the Company House website when you’re done planning.
You will also be required to draft the Memorandum and Articles of Association all by yourself. Make certain that you follow the guidelines, and include all the required details. If you get it wrong your application will be discarded by Company House.
You can easily get templates (and samples) from the internet for about £10+ each, but make sure you verify that they are up to date (including the latest changes made by the Companies Act 2006 in 2009) and that your source is reliable.
When you have all appropriate documents and forms, you must ensure that all intending directors of the company must correctly put in their signatures before you submit it to the registrar, which can be done by post mail (you will find the address online or at the bottom of the form). Be sure you send the parcel by a secured post to avoid any delays.
Your registration takes anywhere between 8 to 10 working days to be processed. You can shorten the length of time by paying for express service which costs £50. At the end of the process you will receive a certificate (a paper copy) of incorporation marking the formation of your company.
The process of registering your company, from start to finish, takes up a lot of your time. First, the form which about 18 pages long, followed by drafting the Memorandum and Articles of Association and the long hours of research required to put together a decent one.

Using a Company Formation Agent
A lot of people have discovered that it’s best to use a company formation agent for this process, because it saves you time, and more importantly, money. Here are the benefits of using an agent:

1. Online filing – If the agent company is registered with Company house then they can send completed forms and documents online, with lower filing costs and faster service.
2. Zero Paper work – All you have to do is fill out a short form online, they’ll do the rest. You needn’t worry your head tackling an 18-page form, just sit back and let the professionals do a good job.
3. No postage fees, ever! – The formation agency will submit your forms by email, which means you have no need to wait for the postman. You will also get your certificate of incorporation by email and can print as much as you need without fear of losing 1 hard copy given to you when you do it yourself.
4. Put the extra in the ordinary – a company formation agent could also furnish you with services like logo design, trade mark registration, VAT registration, domain registration, some of which you may also need to get your company off the ground.
For more information on company formation agents, visit

Comments are closed.