As a sole trader or freelancer, there will be times where you need to provide an address. In these scenarios, you may not want to or be able to provide your personal address. Find out how virtual offices can help.
When looking to register a business in the UK, there are several critical processes you need to go through in order to get started. These will cover a wide variety of areas, from choosing your company’s name and directors to deciding upon the right business structure. One of the most essential processes, and the one that is the topic of this blog, is registering your business- and to register a business, you need to provide a physical business address. This article will go through the different steps required to register a business and how UK Postbox’s services can help you regarding your business address.
Setting up your Limited Company: Step by Step
Before we tackle the specifics needed to register a business with a UK Postbox business address, we will give you a quick summary of the necessary steps and processes that need actioning before you do this. When setting up a limited company, you will need to:
- Choose the right structure: Before continuing along this process, you should make sure to choose the proper structure for your business depending on what you do. For example, is a Private Limited Company (PLC) right for you, or would you work better as a sole trader? This is very important as the structure you choose can determine how your business is taxed and how it receives funding.
- Choose a company name: Check all previously trademarked and registered names to make sure the name you’ve chosen hasn’t already been taken. You can use this tool to search for registered business names.
- Determine directors: Business directors are very important, with many different responsibilities over the company, and a company director must be chosen as a part of this process.
- Determine shareholders/guarantors: Your company will need at least one shareholder or guarantor- this person can also be a director.
- You should also identify anyone in the company that holds a significant amount of power; for example, anyone that has voting rights.
- Prepare documents: Documents must be provided that show how you plan on running your company, such as “articles of association”.
- Record keeping: You’ll need to check what company and accounting records you need to have on file.
- Register your business: You will need to register your business information publicly with HMRC. Read on to understand more about what this means.
For more information on how to set up your company, you should check out our blog on setting up a limited company.
Register a Business
Registering your business is the final process in setting up a new company in the UK. To register a brand new business, you will need to provide the following:
- Registration of your business with Companies House.
- An SIC Code of your choosing from a range of options.
- A registered office address for your business.
Register a Business with Companies House
When registering with Companies House, you will also be registering for Corporation Tax. Once completed, you will receive a certificate of incorporation, confirming that the company legally exists with a date of formation and your company number. To register, you will need to provide the following pieces of information:
- town of birth
- mother’s maiden name
- father’s first name
- telephone number
- national insurance number
- passport number
Cost of registry is £12 and can be paid by debit or credit card or Paypal account. Your company is usually registered within 24 hours.
An SIC Code, or Standard Industrial Classification code, describes a business or company’s main activity. A company will typically select one or more codes that best describe the nature of their work from an official list of existing SIC codes. These codes are used by Companies House to identify what companies do and to sort them into different public categories. The various business categories can have as many as 40 different SIC codes to choose from, though the number will depend on the industry.
Your company or business can choose up to four SIC Codes if needed, though many companies opt to select just one; to serve as a concise summary of what they do as a business. Choosing at least one SIC Code is a vital part of the registration process.
Registered Office Address
When looking to register a business or company, the final thing that you must provide is a registered office address- this is the address that all physical communications will be sent to. The given address will need to be a physical address in the UK, within the same country your business is registered in. For example, any company registered in England must have a corresponding registered address in England. You are required to provide a correspondence address for your registered office address, which means that you won't be able to use a PO Box.
How UK Postbox can Help
At UK Postbox, we offer businesses a solution that allows them to quickly access a physical office address through our Business Address Service. With this service, your company can choose from various physical street addresses to easily and efficiently manage your company’s physical mail online; we call these addresses our virtual business addresses. However, you might not realise that our addresses can also be used as a registered office address for incorporated businesses!
Suppose you want to set up a private limited company in the United Kingdom, as we have previously discussed. In that case, you will need to provide a physical business address for your business and any listed directors. With our Business Address Service, you have access to both; you can use this virtual address for your company and also as the official correspondence address of your company’s directors. This means that you could even start a business based in the UK from anywhere in the world with ease.
An important thing to bear in mind is that we also provide PO Box addresses as a service, and you might be wondering if these addresses can also be used as your registered office address. The short answer is no; our PO Box addresses cannot be used for this purpose. This is because our virtual PO Box addresses do not provide you with a physical street address in the way that our business address service does; as previously mentioned, according to GOV.UK you can only use a PO Box address for this purpose if you can provide a physical address and postcode alongside it.
When looking to incorporate your new business, it is essential to make sure that you cover all the processes mentioned in this blog article. When you get to the stage of registering your company, you must be able to provide a physical address as the official correspondence address for your business- a service that we can provide very easily at UK Postbox! For more information on the pricing of our business mail services, you can click the link below.