Top 5 Tips to Keeping Your Trust Accountant


When you love something let it go. Yes, all very well and good in the world of romance. Just not for your trust accountant. That is why we dedicate this blog on keeping your trust accountant for good. When you find a good trust accountant, you grab that baby, hold on tight and don't let go! You see your trust accountant is the glue that holds the paper mâché together. They are the chocolate chip cookie that rounds out the perfect cup of tea. Get the picture? Keeping good people is one of the biggest challenges in business. Finding them is the easy part in comparison. Once you find that perfect trust accountant that fits seamlessly into your business, you want to keep them happy to retain them as an employee as long as possible. Trust accountants keep everything running smoothly in the background of your business. The sales and rentals business you make, all would not be possible without the efficient workings of your trust accountant. So, what are the bug bears for trust accountants that ... read more >>

Top 5 Tips to Keeping Your Trust Accountant2019-03-28T06:24:47+00:00

New Property Licensing Training Requirements – Prepare for the Changes Ahead


Getting to Know the New Industry Qualifications Discussions surrounding the reform of Property Licensing NSW started in 2016. Fast forward to 2018 and we are now looking at the implementation of these reforms, likely to be later this year. Of note is the introduction of three categories of qualifications as opposed to the existing two. Certificate of Registration Licensed Real Estate Agent Licensee in Charge So what does this mean? Certificate of Registration We will see an extension of the Certificate of Registration (COR) course for new entrants into the Property industry. COR holders will have four years to upgrade to a full license from the implementation of the changes. A 12 month operating exclusion will face those who do not upgrade within the four year deadline. Those COR holders looking to upgrade to a full license must hold a Certificate IV in Property Services and demonstrate 12 months practical industry experience. COR holders will not be able to sign agency agreements, leases or undertake trust account transactions. To be valid, these items are now required to be ... read more >>

New Property Licensing Training Requirements – Prepare for the Changes Ahead2019-03-28T06:24:49+00:00

8 Ways to Reduce Costs for Start-Up Real Estate Agenices


Australia thrives on small business. It is what makes our country go round. So the reality of the number of small business that fail to succeed is definitely a cause for concern. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, more than 60% of small businesses cease operating within the first three years of opening their doors. How Can You Reduce Costs for Your Start-Up Real Estate? We see the answer to this question lies in planning. You can have the best business idea in the world, yet without a solid business, financial and marketing plan, you are setting yourself up to be a statistic. The reality is that running a real estate agency is an expensive business. There are a lot of upfront and ongoing costs to manage. We have seen many agencies cease to operate in their first year – and it came down to poor planning. We have outlined some high cost areas and suitable alternatives to consider when starting out. Remember, you can start small and grow big. Living within your means is a ... read more >>

8 Ways to Reduce Costs for Start-Up Real Estate Agenices2019-03-28T06:24:54+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

Sh*t In, Sh*t Out – Creating Policy on Data Entry for Trust Accounting


Data entry is one of the necessary evils of our job. No matter what way you look at it, it is the #1 priority on our daily agenda. Why do we continue to falter when it comes to keeping consistent, well-maintained data entry policies and procedures? Time. Creating effective data entry policies is a time intensive task. Implementing effective procedures for staff to follow will reduce the amount of headaches at reporting time. We have previously discussed the 10 trust accounting fails that will send your landlords packing that includes sloppy and inconsistent data entry. This blog discusses creating consistent data entry rules that will ensure your reports are clean and in an easily identifiable format every month for your clients. Good customer service means delivering reliable outputs every month – and it all starts with your data. SETTING THE SCENE – THE PROBLEM  Problem #1 – No standard formatting This tends to be a common feature amongst many agencies because there is no standard data entry formula across the board. Creating a procedures manual that forms part ... read more >>

Sh*t In, Sh*t Out – Creating Policy on Data Entry for Trust Accounting2019-03-28T06:24:55+00:00

The Future of The Property Services Industry – We Reveal The Good, The Bad & The Ugly


There has been lots of discussion over the past 12-18 months regarding the need to overhaul the Property Services industry. We all agree that there are areas that are crying out for an overhaul, in particular in the areas of training requirements. We have read, digested and rummaged through the points made by the NSW Fair Trading and have summarised what we believe is ‘The Good, the Bad and the Ugly’ of what is in store. Let’s start on a positive note… THE GOOD As of January 30th, 2017, it is mandatory for all private landlords and agents to be registered with Rental Bonds Online and must now invite tenants to lodge their rental bonds using the system. You can read more about the changes on our recent blog on the mandatory rental bonds changes. The implementation of Property Industry Training Reforms including improving entry standards and training requirements, enhanced continuing professional development (CPD), higher standards of accountability and strengthening NSW Fair Trading’s powers to take action on rogue agents. Parliament will pass this legislation in the coming months. ... read more >>

The Future of The Property Services Industry – We Reveal The Good, The Bad & The Ugly2019-03-28T06:24:55+00:00

Surviving End of Financial Year Without Losing Your Mind


End of Financial Year You just got through the last one relatively unscathed, just a few bumps and bruises to show. You recovered… then you blinked and BOOM! It’s here again. And with it comes higher than normal stress levels, later nights, less sleep and a whole lot of thoughts about how you’ll do it better next year. Well, the time is now. Before this financial year is over, we want to help you plan the systems you need to put in place now, to make this the last ever EOFY where you are chasing your tail til the umpteenth hour and adding a whole lot of undue stress to your already hectic schedule. Preparation is key. Stop, breathe and follow our 3 steps to getting through this EOFY. EOFY Statement Previews By generating EOFY statement previews, you can instantly see errors such as missing addresses and poorly allocated expenses and revenues at a glance. You then have the opportunity to amend the errors before you run the reports. Reconcile If there is one thing you can ... read more >>

Surviving End of Financial Year Without Losing Your Mind2019-03-28T06:25:00+00:00

Misappropriation of Bond Money


RENTAL BONDS ONLINE A New System to Reduce Misappropriation of Bond Money The misuse of trust money is still a hot topic in Real Estate. We have previously written about bond theft and how it is the most common cause of misappropriation of funds in the industry. Unfortunately the message seems to still have not gotten through with agents continuing to misappropriate bond monies for their own gain. The latest case in Victoria saw the agency representative (and Director), accept bond money into his own personal account before passing on to the Residential Tenancies Bond Authority. Then yet again, he accepted bond returns into his own personal account before passing back on to tenants, resulting in a five year ban. Is it really worth the risk? Are agents ill informed or is it just a case of gross negligence and fraud? It is an issue that has plagued the industry for too long and now some states have introduced a new system to help fix the problem. ELIMINATING BOND THEFT WITH RENTAL BONDS ONLINE Rental Bonds Online in ... read more >>

Misappropriation of Bond Money2019-03-28T06:25:00+00:00

Keeping On Top of Your Tradies


Sometimes the ‘set and forget’ tactic can be a blessing. Like setting your coffee machine for automatic brew, or your bread maker to auto bake to rise from slumber to the smells of fresh bread and brewing coffee. Bliss right? However, as an agent, this is definitely not one tactic to have in your repertoire when it comes to managing your tradespeople. Unfortunately, some agents fall victim to signing on tradespeople and doing all the right checks at the start – ABN, licences, insurances and work cover – but then fail to perform regular yearly checks to ensure these vital licences and paperwork have not lapsed. This can have major ramifications on both your agency and your landlords – a sticky situation you definitely don’t want to find yourself in. As an agent, what do you need to do? Conduct a thorough checklist of the following from all new tradespeople you engage through your agency: Relevant licence – checks done through your local governing body that your tradie is licenced, (checks can be performed online) Professional Indemnity Insurance (depending on ... read more >>

Keeping On Top of Your Tradies2019-03-28T06:25:04+00:00

When Ignorance Is Not Bliss


Licensees who stick their head in the sand, can expect to feel the full force of the law. There are some things we can turn a blind eye to. Sneaking in a 3pm sweet tooth chocolate break. Taking an extra biscuit from the staff room stash. Knocking off 5 minutes early to catch some of the last rays of sunshine on a Friday afternoon. But there are some things that you simply cannot ignore. Like your responsibilities as a Licensee in charge or OIEC. What you don’t want is a knock at the door from your regulatory body? That would just ruin the start of any weekend. SO WHO IS RESPONSIBLE FOR WHAT? Rules of conduct stipulate that every place of business must be in the charge of a licensee. This Licensee is responsible for all the work and business carried out at the place of business. For those who own several businesses, each requires its own Licensee in charge to supervise the business carried out at each location. No single Licensee can be in charge ... read more >>

When Ignorance Is Not Bliss2019-03-28T06:25:05+00:00