What is an Expert Property Accountant?
An expert property accountant specialists in property. I recently did a podcast with Tony Thorne from Thorne Accounting and he went through what an expert property accountant is. First of all he told me that there are probably a lot of accounts out there that say they specialise in property but ultimately they do an array of other tasks; Tony just specialises in property. In fact if you haven’t got a property to start with he probably won’t take you on as a client.
I’m a big fan myself on niche markets and more than ever specialists in their fields are being sourced by clients as niche markets are so important. You know you are dealing with someone who spends their time researching, keeping up to speed with everything in their industry; the trends, the new and changing rules, the works. So they keep their focus purely to do with the property investors.
Tony is quite right when he says, “You can’t be a specialist in everything. We pick our focus and stick to it.?
I asked Tony what services he offers property people. He went on to explain the first thing they do when we meet new clients, we sit down and talk to see what their situation and structure is. Asking questions to make sure their structure is created correctly and that involves how they have structured their property portfolios to ensure optimisation of their investments. This usually comes down to how their loans are structured and sitting regarding investment properties and personal homes. And secondly, he looks at protection of the set up of their assets eg trusts, business partnerships, personal partnerships, all different types of risks and structures so it is set up to be of the most benefit with the least risk. Tony looks to see if there's any ways the client could potentially improve that set up.
The other thing I noticed with some businesses is that they have an open up front cost so if you are shopping around you know what you are up for. Always nice to know with professional services what to expect; rather than be in hiding until the bill arrives. This is a whole other subject but Thorne Accounting have their pricing transparently placed on their website.
I asked Tony about this and he explained to me that he thinks that it’s important for clients to know what they're going to expect; cost wise. Some accountants have the clock running and if they aren’t efficient this can be costly. They have systems designed just for property as they do the same thing over and over which reduces the costs. Specialist property accounts do this all day, every day. They know exactly what to expect from particular jobs so we can actually put prices on there because we know what to expect, the systems in place, to specifically be efficient for property matters; which means that is why they can provide competitive prices.
I went on to talk to Tony about depreciation of chattels and chattel valuations including valuers who value chattels, how to do your own valuation and when you should do a chattel valuation on your property and other things about how to get the best return for your investment in property. After talking to him it made me realised why people need an expert property accountant!
He also pointed out that annually he reviews the client again to make sure there aren’t some areas that need tweaking and changing to work better for you. It’s not a case of setting and forgetting as circumstances change and each year this is reviewed.
Listen to the full episode on my podcast Property Chit Chat - What is An Expert Property Accountant by clicking this link: www.goodtonic.co.nz/property-chit-chat
Til next time, Lou Roke