[Updated 2023] Starting a new business can be daunting, luckily there are now a number of services on hand to help. Take a look at our company formation agent reviews and find out what you get for your money.
Hours Of Research:
Company Formation Comparison Table
|Formation Agent||Cheapest Package||Add On Services||Our Rating||Review||Official Site|
|£12.99||Excellent||Read Review||Visit Website|
|£12.99||Excellent||Read Review||Visit Website|
|FREE||Average||Read Review||Visit Website|
|£12.48||Good||Read Review||Visit Website|
|£12.99||Excellent||Read Review||Visit Website|
|FREE||Poor||Read Review||Visit Website|
|£11.99||Excellent||Read Review||Visit Website|
|£18.39||Excellent||Read Review||Visit Website|
|£15.99||Excellent||Read Review||Visit Website|
|Free||Excellent||Read Review||Visit Website|
|£9.99||Good||Read Review||Visit Website|
|£15.99||Good||Read Review||Visit Website|
|£13.00||Excellent||Read Review||Visit Website|
|£12.39||Excellent||Read Review||Visit Website|
|£13.50||Good||Read Review||Visit Website|
|£16.95||Average||Read Review||Visit Website|
|£28.00||Average||Read Review||Visit Website|
Choosing A Company Formation Agent
Not sure how to decide which is the best agent for you? Check out the video below for a full run-through of what you need to look out for and the biggest mistake to avoid:
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How Our Ratings Work
We make it our business to remain up-to-date regarding developments in the company formation field. We regularly update our review, so you can rest assured you will be presented with current, accurate information.
Use our best company formation agent reviews to gain valuable insights into all of the leading company formation agents in the UK.
Peruse our user-friendly online company formation comparison table. Explore the packages each company offers and the fees you can expect to pay. We also rate each company in terms of performance and service.
We make information relating to the three readily available to you, but we also suggest you check the website of each company formation agent (just click on the tab to go directly to the website).
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At A Glance
Here’s how the company formation agents we have reviewed stack up at a glance…
#1 – 1st Formations (Our Rating = 9.4)
Billed as one of the leading online company formation agents in the UK, 1st Formations offers a number of company registration packages and additional extras (such as address services) for those looking to form a limited company.
There’s a simple online application form and the transparent fees outline all of the costs involved. Service is efficient and very speedy (1st Formations claim the majority of applications are processed within three hours).
If you want to give your new business extra clout when it comes to perceived reputation, they also offer a registered office address that is based in London’s prestigious Covent Garden (WC2).
What else is there to know? Read our full 1st Formations review to find out.
#2 – Quality Company Formations (Our Rating = 9.4)
With an excellent reputation across multiple review sites, Quality Company Formations is one of the leading UK company formation agents.
They achieve this by achieving a very high standard across multiple areas. They’re cost-effective, offer good customer support, an easy formation process, and plenty of extra services to choose from.
That makes them one of our favourite services for forming new limited companies.
You can read more in our Quality Company Formations review.
#3 – ANNA Formations (Our Rating = 9.4)
They might be best known as an online bank, but ANNA Money are now expanding their offering to small business with their company formation agent, ANNA Formations.
It might not be the full-on formation agent like most of the other brands on this page, but they still offer a fantastic simple process and all of the essential add-ons like a registered office address. Plus, it’s possible to form your company and get a business bank account for free.
The downside is that you can only form limited companies with them and you can only add a sole director and shareholder during the formation, though more can be added later.
Read more in our ANNA Formations review.
#4 – Your Company Formations (Our Rating = 9.3)
As one of the most advertised company formation agents around, there’s a fair chance you’ve heard of Your Company Formations before.
They offer a really good range of packages at a price that’s at the low to middle end of the market. The added good reputation of their customer support team means you get good value for money.
Perhaps the slight disappointment is that they don’t offer more additional services. Still, if you just need a fairly standard company formation, that shouldn’t bother you too much.
Read more in our Your Company Formations review.
#5 – Rapid Formations (Our Rating = 9.3)
As one of the best reviewed company formation agents in the UK, Rapid Formations have an excellent reputation.
That’s partly driven by the excellent customer service they offer alongside a good range of services, making them ideal for those based overseas.
The package options are well priced. Not the cheapest but certainly not the most expensive either.
You can read more in our Rapid Formations review.
#6 – Tide (Our Rating = 9.3)
Technically, Tide are an online bank that target businesses, however, they’ve made it onto our best company formation agents list with their free company registration service.
That’s right, we said FREE. And we mean it – they even pay the £12 Companies House registration fee for you.
The catch? You have to open one of their business bank accounts at the same time. There are also a few other limitations, such as it only being open to UK residents.
However, for many people it will give them everything they need with one of the quickest and easiest setup processes we have ever seen.
With that in mind, you don’t get better than free, so it’s worth a try if you just need a basic company formed as cheaply as possible.
You can read more in our Tide Company Registration review.
#7 – Mint Formations (Our Rating = 9.3)
What’s impressive about Mint Formations is that they deliver on three key aspects.
Firstly, they offer some of the best prices around, particularly for the entry level packages. Secondly, they have a great range of additional services to choose from. Finally, they have a very simple company formation process.
The only place they’re let down a bit is that the price for their all-inclusive package is quite high. That’s a relatively minor point overall though.
You can read more in our Mint Formations review.
#8 – Company Formations 247 (Our Rating = 9.2)
With one of the most varied offerings around, it’s no surprise that Company Formations 247 are one of the most popular UK formation agents.
Whether they’re the best company formation agent for you is down to what you need. Since they offer so many services, you may find they are perfect if you need more than the standard formation.
However, they are priced a little on the higher side so, if you’re looking for a bargain, they’re probably not the best choice.
You can read more in our Company Formations 247 review.
#9 – Companies Made Simple (Our Rating = 9.2)
Considered the largest and most well-known company formation agent in the UK, Companies Made Simple boast they have formed over 1 million companies since 2002.
Companies Made Simple claim to offer a “one-stop-shop” for new companies. They provide five comprehensive formation packages plus a wide-range of services.
Alongside the customary additional extras, you will also find other options such as Certificates of good standing. With close links to an accountancy firm you can get help with tax returns and the like too.
Read more in our Companies Made Simple review.
#10 – The Company Warehouse (Our Rating = 9.2)
Perhaps THE standout feature of The Company Warehouse is that they offer some company formation packages that are completely free of charge.
That’s all very good, and it instantly makes them an interesting proposition. That’s especially true when you consider the range of additional services they offer too.
However, if you do need extra services then the prices aren’t always the best around. It’s worth keeping an eye on this and shopping around if you need to.
Read more in our The Company Warehouse review.
#11 – The Formations Company (Our Rating = 9.1)
The Formations Company offer some of the lowest priced initial company formation packages in the UK.
That makes them an obvious choice for many startups, especially as they are one of the more active companies when it comes to advertising their services.
They also offer excellent customer support and the formation process is as simple as you’ll find anywhere.
On the downside, The Formations Company make up for their low initial prices with some fairly expensive optional add-ons. If you don’t need these extra services they are an excellent choice.
You can find out more in our The Formations Company review.
#12 – Set Up a Company (Our Rating = 9.0)
Launched in 1994, SetupaCompany is no stranger to the company formation market. Backed by a firm of accountants, and offering a month of free accountancy, company bank account and cashback to boot, this is a professional firm offering a comprehensive service.
SetupaCompany claim they can help you to form your own limited company in just 48 hours. Simply input key details in the easy-to-complete application form and they will provide the legal documentation required to get you started.
You can find out what else we had to say in our SetupaCompany review.
#13 – 1st Choice Formations (Our Rating = 9.0)
While the website may look a little dated, 1st Choice Formations actually offer some good value for money services.
They also have some good reviews across consumer review sites and a wide selection of services to choose from. That means they’re a pretty good choice provided you can put up with a slightly less ‘pleasing to the eye’ formation process.
You can find out what our experts thought in our 1st Choice Formations review.
#14 – Blue Sky Formations (Our Rating = 8.9)
There’s quite a bit to like about Blue Sky Formations as they offer a wide range of different services nad have some of the best value prices out there.
Unfortunately, where they let themselves down a bit is transparency as there’s very little information available about the company or the formation process on their website.
Find out what we do know about them in our full Blue Sky Formations review.
#15 – CFS Formations (Our Rating = 8.9)
If you’re looking for offshore company formations, CFS Formations has a great selection to choose from.
Some of the options can be quite pricey but the formations process has been simplified to a good degree.
Learn more in our CFS Formations review.
#16 – Company Wizard (Our Rating = 8.8)
Billed as one of the best company formation agents in the UK, Company Wizard appear to offer pretty good value for money.
However, if we’re honest, their website is starting to look a little dated and their formation process isn’t quite as straightforward as some of their competitors. Add to that a somewhat limited range of services and while not a bad option, we feel there are better available.
Find out more about why we think that in our full Company Wizard review.
#17 – Simple Formations (Our Rating = 8.8)
They may offer easy company formations but Simple Formations have some of the highest basic setup packages in the industry.
This makes them difficult to recommend even though they have good customer support and some reasonably priced bigger formation packages.
Get our full opinion in our Simple Formations review.
#18 – Future Formations (NO LONGER TRADING)
FUTURE FORMATIONS HAS CEASED TRADING.
Billed as a company formation agent of the future, Future Formations had a lot of promise. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out for them as they went out of business in August 2022.
With an excellent range of services and some of the lowest prices around, there was certainly a lot to like about this formation agent. In addition, they had relationships with several other service providers that allowed you to collect cashback on common services your business might need.
The only real drawback was that while the team behind the company were very experienced, Future Formations was a relatively new company. That means they were still building up their reputation and fine-tuning their offering when they ceased trading.
You can read more in our Future Formations review.
Advantages of Company Formation Agents
Using a reputable company formation agent to register your limited company comes with a number of advantages:
- Benefit from the knowledge and experience of a professional team (a team well-versed in carrying out numerous company formations on a regular basis).
- All of the legwork is done on your behalf, leaving you plenty of time to concentrate on getting your business up and running, and making a success of it!
- Using a company formation agent will help you to register a limited company efficiently.
Application forms are straightforward and take little time to complete as a rule. So, you could register your limited company in a matter of hours.
- The company formation agent will take care of the legalities. So, you can rest assured all the paperwork will be completed accurately.
- Using a company formation agent can be as cost-effective as going straight to Companies House.
- A company formation agent will provide plenty of guidance and could also provide lots of additional services.
Disadvantages of Company Formation Agents
The best company formation agents allow you to quickly and easily form your own limited company. However, there are a few aspects you should be aware of:
You might find yourself wading through a cluttered website from time to time, not all company formation websites seem to be designed with ease of use in mind.
Check what the formation company offer in the way of packages. Some only cater for a basic company limited by shares formation, and cannot assist if you want to form other types of companies (such as public limited or limited by guarantee companies).
Lots of agents offer a myriad of additional extras. Whilst this provides you with choice, and help with just about anything you can think of, it can also lead to information overload. This could cause confusion as you try to figure out which package is best for you.
You might end up going over budget! Adding lots of optional extras (at an extra cost) can soon mount up, plus not all companies list fees that include VAT – so you will need to take this into account too.
Company Formation Agents Vs Doing It Yourself
There are a few distinct advantages of opting for company formation agents over registering our own limited company. Doing it all yourself is an attractive option if you’re looking to save money.
However, setting up a company is no mean feat, and you could waste a lot of time making sure you’ve crossed all of the t’s and dotted the i’s. This is time which could be better spent organising other elements of your business start-up.
You could speed up the registration process by using an agent. If you make an application to Companies House via post you could be waiting for up to ten days for your registration to go through. Fill in an online application form in collaboration with a company formation agent and you could get your business up and running on the same day!
It’s also wise to keep in mind that the formation process calls for precision – so you need to ensure the information provided to Companies House is correct (otherwise you will have to readmit information at a later date – slowing everything down).
Using the best company formation agent means you will have access to professional guidance throughout the process, and will continue to be able to access support following registration.
Weighing everything up, we don’t advocate going it alone, why run the risk of getting things wrong and wasting valuable time when you can engage a professional company to ensure all the legalities of registering your limited company are taken care of?
Should I use a Company Formation Agent?
The fact of the matter is that it isn’t necessary to use a company formation agent at all. If you prefer, you can simply go direct to Companies House and register it yourself.
However, as we have already discussed, doing it this way does mean you’ll need to be very confident in what you are doing. The formation process on Companies House isn’t always straightforward and making a mistake may cost you later.
Plus, a lot of the best company formation agents offer added incentives and extras such as free business banking (for a set period of time) to help sweeten the deal.
Therefore, for most people, the answer to whether you should use a company formation agent is yes, you probably should!
How to Choose the Best Company Formation Agent
There are a number of company formation agent reviews you can read to find the best for you. Most are reputable, have plenty of satisfied customers and seem to offer lots in the way of support. So how do you choose the best formation agent for you?
Each company brings something slightly different to the table but their end game is the same – to help you easily and quickly register your fledgling business as a limited company.
Most company formation agents these days offer comprehensive packages that can be tailored to suit your business needs. We can’t definitively state which company formation agent is best for you – this depends upon your circumstances – what type of limited company you want to establish and the additional extras you require.
We can however suggest that you take the time to digest the information to hand. Revisit our comparison table, visit each of the company formation websites (save time by clicking on the company name directly from the table to visit the website) and look over the available packages and related fees.
We wish you well in your search for the best company formation agent and hope our company formation agent reviews have provided a little insight into what’s on offer.
Don’t forget to download our free guide to forming a UK company.