The Art of Tidying Up Before End of Financial Year


How to KonMarie Your Trust Account at EOFY Are you obsessed like us and an avid follower of the #konmarie method of tidying up? If so, then you’ll have probably watched Marie Kondo’s series in full on Netflix – Tidying Up with Marie Kondo. For those of you not on the tidying movement (for the uninitiated you should really give it a go), Marie is a Japanese-born organising consultant. She helps people declutter their homes by following simple methods and ‘sparking joy’ through the satisfaction of organisation in the home. The premise being that everything has its own place. So this got us to thinking.... Can you imagine how clean Marie’s trust account would be if she had one? Which got us to further thinking.... could we apply these same principles to trust accounting? The answer is yes! Trust accounting software can accumulate a lot of clutter over time. It can be bought on by a change of staff, change of software or simply overlooking the clutter whilst we are busy with the daily processing and running ... read more >>

The Art of Tidying Up Before End of Financial Year2019-05-20T22:17:16+00:00

Creating Harmony Between Bookkeeping & Property Management


Trust Accounting and Bookkeeping are very different entities. Yet despite being in different worlds, it is important that bookkeeping and trust accounting operate in succinct harmony. Some agencies may have one staff member managing the trust account and reconciling the general account. This is completely acceptable. Other agencies may keep the roles completely separate. Also acceptable. What is important is the way they communicate with one another. The beauty of cloud-based trust accounting software is that they can talk to accounting packages such as Xero. They can quickly and easily report on the agencies income via an API key. This technology is not new. It has been around for some time. However, the key point is, if the data is not entered correctly on the trust accounting side, it will create havoc on the bookkeeping side. Enter chaos. Strive for Harmony Both the trust accounting and bookkeeping departments must work in harmony. Working in unison will ensure the staff members record transactions correctly on both sides and meet regulatory standards. As both trust accountants and bookkeepers, we ... read more >>

Creating Harmony Between Bookkeeping & Property Management2019-03-28T06:24:44+00:00

Single Touch Payroll is Coming


Single Touch Payroll (STP for short) is on its way. It will hit our shores on the 1st July 2019. STP has been slowly introduced since 1st July 2018 for those businesses with 20 employees or more. It is now extending to all businesses with 19 employees or else as compulsory come July 1st this year. What Does This Mean For Employers? STP changes the way employers report their employees' tax and super to the ATO. The introduction of Single Touch Payroll means all employers who have anywhere from 1-19 employees will need to register. With the use of accounting software with STP, employees' super and tax information is sent to the ATO every time an employer runs their payroll. The ATO will receive the information directly through the STP or through a third party (depending on the set-up of your software provider). Xero will offer an option for payroll only at $10 a month. For those micro employers of 4 employees or less, there will be other alternatives available such as allowing your registered BAS agent ... read more >>

Single Touch Payroll is Coming2019-03-28T06:24:44+00:00

A Reconciliation a Day Keeps the Auditors at Bay


This month we are revisiting our oldest friend, reconciliation. Because, no matter how much love and attention we give this friend of ours, they seem to be the one that requires the most attention. It is a commonplace to receive last minute calls at EOFY from clients who have not reconciled their accounts for the entire year. Hence the need to share with your our top reconciliation tips. Whilst it is not a legal requirement to reconcile on a daily basis, it is always best practice. To prove our point, here are some previous musings on reconciling that we have covered in the past to get you up to speed. 5 REASONS YOU SHOULD RECONCILE YOUR TRUST ACCOUNT DAILY OUR TOP 10 RECONCILIATION ERRORS (AND HOW TO FIX THEM) ADJUSTMENTS ARE THE CARDINAL SIN OF TRUST ACCOUNTING 11 AVOIDABLE TRUST ACCOUNTING MISTAKES THAT CAN BREAK YOUR BUSINESS Reconciliation Tips Reconcile daily Don’t leave adjustments sitting there for more than 2 months, particularly at around 30th June. Reconciling daily means you avoid end of month stress and avoid ... read more >>

A Reconciliation a Day Keeps the Auditors at Bay2019-03-28T06:24:48+00:00

Are Server-Based Bookkeeping Systems Dead?


Just as the real estate industry is undergoing a shift towards cloud-based solutions, the accounting industry is also progressing onwards and upwards since the introduction of Xero back in 2007. It's time to say goodbye to server-based bookkeeping systems. Our bookkeeper Wonderwoman and Office Manager Tracy is both Xero certified and a registered BAS agent. This month, she gives us her insights as to why Xero is the perfect solution for Real Estate agencies looking to streamline their accounting processes from 1st July 2018. Top 8 Reasons Why Xero is the Leader in Online Accounting Systems Firstly, most trust accounting software packages talk to Xero.  This is particularly useful for agencies and their income and reimbursement reporting. Xero also allows for better tracking as transactions are pushed across to Xero for monthly income and expenses. This includes Property Management fees, agent management fees, advertising and agent reimbursements. Staff can enter their own leave requests directly into Xero for Director approval. They can also download their own payslips. Easy to track employee working hours as staff can enter ... read more >>

Are Server-Based Bookkeeping Systems Dead?2019-03-28T06:24:49+00:00

The 10 Most Avoidable Trust Accounting Mistakes


Are You Guilty of These Trust Accounting Mistakes? We understand in life, mistakes happen. Like leaving an open tin of milo in the house unsupervised or leaving your washing out on a rainy day. Yep – those are passable mistakes. Unfortunately, the mistakes we see on a daily basis with agents and their trust accounts are not on this list. They are on the ‘Should never happen’ list. And yet, time and time again we see these same errors happening in agencies wherever we go. To make sure you don’t fall victim to these common doings, we’ve listed the top 10 ‘AVOIDABLE’ trust accounting mistakes. NOT BACKING UP DAILY We write about backing up daily on perhaps… yes, a daily basis. Why? Because this is by far and foremost the most common and avoidable mistake agencies make. By not backing up daily, you are exposing yourself to a giant loss of precious data – it could be weeks or even month’s worth. Minimum regulations state once a month – but we disagree on that one. Getting into ... read more >>

The 10 Most Avoidable Trust Accounting Mistakes2019-03-28T06:24:54+00:00

How Paperless Can You Be With Your Trust Accounting?


Going completely paperless in trust accounting is not always a feasible expectation. As an agency there are documents that must be available in hardcopy, however, we can all work towards ensuring we only print those documents that are necessary, and make a conscious effort to minimise our amount of unnecessary printing – both for ourselves and for the environment. NSW legislation states that ‘records must be in visible form and kept for a period of 3 years’. There is some discrepancy in opinion of what actually constitutes a ‘visible form’. Is it a hardcopy document or is it visible by being online? There are arguments both ways so we have detailed a rough guideline of when and when not to print. When going paperless is an option… Firstly let’s look at the areas in which we can look at going paperless. With the integration of online software accounting systems, the opportunities to go paperless have increased. So where you can, try and benefit from these available options in your software. Everyday communications: Ask yourself, do you really ... read more >>

How Paperless Can You Be With Your Trust Accounting?2019-03-28T06:24:58+00:00

Top 9 Ways to Avoid Becoming a Shoebox Client


No one wants to be ‘that client’. The one that nearing tax time, is sent into a spin to find the hundreds of receipts and invoices, trying to rectify a year of haphazard record keeping with a massive pile of unordered receipts and invoices. Yes, that client. Don’t get us wrong, this is more common than not, and for reasons which are completely feasible and reasonable. Life as a business owner is hectic and unfortunately, keeping good records can often fall to the bottom of the pile. These clients are lovingly referred to in the industry as ‘shoebox clients’. Where everything and anything that relates to their business dealings is crammed nice and compactly into a shoebox. Done. Totally fine right? Whilst we are able to work with whatever we are given, keeping these types of records (ie – no real records) makes your tax bill a lot heftier than it needs to be, as the more time your accountant needs to spend rifling through your records, converting to electronic format and making sense of a whole lot ... read more >>

Top 9 Ways to Avoid Becoming a Shoebox Client2019-03-28T06:24:58+00:00