Should my company’s registered office be my home address or my accountant’s?

Should my company’s registered office be my home address or my accountant’s?

New company owner asks:

I’m in the process of setting up my company and I need to decide on the address for the registered office. Should I use my home address, my business address, the accountant’s, or another address entirely?

Acumenica answers:

When registering a UK limited company, you need to provide a registered office address. This address is where Companies House and other government agencies will send official correspondence and where legal documents can be served. Generally speaking, the options you have are:

  • Use your business premises address
  • Use your home address
  • Use a registered office service address
  • Use your accountant’s office address

Using your business premises address

If your business has an office, shop, workshop or similar premises, you can use this as the registered office. 

Using your home address

Using your home address is an option but not one we recommend:

  • Your home address will be on the public record at Companies House. This means that it will also be easy for people to find.
  • Your home address may not give a professional aspect to your newly formed company.
  • You don’t want your home address to be spammed.
  • It’s unlikely that you’ll want people (customers, suppliers or sales people) to turn up to your home unannounced.

Using a registered office service

There are a lot of companies in existence who offer the use of their address as your registered office. It’s a simple enough solution, and is fairly inexpensive. They will normally accept mail on your behalf, scan it and email it to you. 

Using your accountant’s office

Roughly half our clients use our address as their registered office. This option keeps your private address private and also ensures that all important mail from HMRC and Companies House is acted upon immediately, and nothing will get missed.

Some accountants charge for this service but Acumenica include it as standard in all of our packaged solutions.

A quick note about changing your registered office address

Generally speaking, changing your registered office address is easy enough. Strictly, a board resolution should be proposed and voted on by the directors, and any change notified to Companies House. This can be done online if you have the authentication code or on paper by form AD01 if you do not. If your company is enrolled in PROOF at Companies House, you cannot change the address by paper form. 

We’ve seen issues when changing the registered office from accountant’s office to another (when you change accountants) where a change has not been possible as the od accountant has not handed over the authentication code. We always advise therefore that you get, and keep safe, the authentication code.

It’s also worth noting that you cannot change addresses from one jurisdiction to another. Although the UK is one country, there are three distinct jurisdictions: England and Wales; Scotland; and Northern Ireland. If your company is registered in England & Wales, you can’t change registered office to Scotland, or Northern Ireland. Again, this can be an issue of you use your accountant’s office and you change accountants from one in England to one in Scotland, say.