How to buy a franking machine – Everything you need to consider

Updated on 30 August 2023

Franking machines have become an essential tool for modern businesses in the UK. They streamline postage processes, enhance professionalism, and can potentially lead to significant cost savings. If your business is considering acquiring a franking machine, there are several important factors to weigh.

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This guide will walk you through the key decisions – buying vs. rental and new vs. used – and provide a comprehensive overview of the considerations involved in sourcing the ideal franking machine for your specific needs.

Buying a franking machine vs rental – Which option suits your business?

Before diving into the world of franking machines, it’s crucial to determine whether buying or renting is the best fit for your business.

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Purchasing a franking machine outright can be a cost-effective choice for businesses with a consistent and substantial mailing volume. It offers long-term value, as the machine becomes a fixed asset, and you can benefit from potential tax advantages.

Keep in mind, however, that you’ll be responsible for maintenance, repairs, and eventual upgrades.


Renting a franking machine is an attractive option for businesses with fluctuating mail volumes. It provides flexibility without a large upfront investment. Rental agreements often cover maintenance and support, ensuring your machine stays in optimal condition.

This option is particularly appealing for smaller businesses or those that want to test the waters before committing to a purchase.

Buying a new franking machine vs used pre-owned

Once you’ve decided on the buying or rental route, the next decision is whether to go for a new or used franking machine.

New franking machines

Opting for a new franking machine guarantees the latest features, technology, and compatibility with current postal regulations. You’ll also likely receive a manufacturer’s warranty, offering peace of mind. However, the initial cost can be higher, which might be a concern for smaller businesses.

Used franking machines

Buying a used franking machine can be a budget-friendly option, but it’s essential to approach with caution. Ensure the machine is refurbished by a reputable dealer and has been properly maintained. While you might save money upfront, there could be a higher risk of technical issues down the line.

Key considerations when sourcing a franking machine

  1. Mail Volume: Evaluate your average monthly mail volume. This will help you choose a machine with the appropriate processing speed and capacity. Underestimating this can lead to inefficiencies, while overestimating can result in unnecessary costs.
  2. Features: Consider the features that align with your mailing needs. Basic machines may suffice for simple postage, but if you need advanced features like departmental accounts or automatic postage rate updates, invest in a machine that offers these functionalities.
  3. Postal Regulations: Make sure the machine is compliant with Royal Mail’s regulations. Postal rates and rules can change, and having an up-to-date franking machine is crucial for accurate postage.
  4. Maintenance and Support: Research the maintenance services offered by the provider. Regular maintenance is vital for the machine’s longevity and accurate operation.
  5. Integration: If your business relies heavily on digital processes, consider a franking machine that can integrate with your existing systems for seamless postage management.
  6. Supplier Reputation: Whether you’re buying or renting, choose a reputable supplier. Look for reviews, testimonials, and a strong track record in providing quality products and services.
  7. Total Cost of Ownership: Consider the long-term costs, including not just the initial price but also maintenance, ink, labels, and potential software updates.

In conclusion, acquiring a franking machine is a significant decision that can impact your business’s efficiency and finances.

Carefully weigh the options between buying and renting, as well as choosing new or used equipment. Factor in your mail volume, desired features, and supplier reputation.

By considering these factors, you can make an informed choice that aligns with your business needs and goals, ultimately enhancing your postage processes and professional image.


Reviewed by , Managing Director

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