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Our Services

We specialise in providing tax-planning and accounting services, exclusively for property investors. This page provides specific details of our services:

1. Tax-planning service

Our main service to property investors is to ensure that the lowest possible amount of tax is payable on property profits.

This involves an initial review of the most suitable business structure, as well as keeping things under review so that as circumstances change (e.g. interest rates falling), we proactively alter the strategy as required to ensure the property business remains tax-efficient.

For investors, this will usually involve many of the following aspects:

  • Assessing your scenario and advising on the best business structure for you. This may involve using your spouse, family, or a ‘mortgage host’ to change the beneficial ownership of your portfolio, for example.
  • Advising on whether a property company, or a partnership may be useful to you.
  • Advising on how to ‘extract’ property profits tax-efficiently, while still remaining mortgage-able.
  • Considering the best way to get a tax deduction for property expenses – for example, many training seminar costs are disallowed if incurred before the first property is let.
  • Identifying any capital allowances claims & assessing the best way to use these.

Effective tax-planning is about finding a cost-effective suitable solution to a tax problem – for example, if saving tax by showing no profits would make you unmortgage-able, another solution may be required. Similarly, setting up a property company may be tax-efficient, but the professional fees outweigh the tax saved. A good tax adviser will also have an appreciation of the non-tax issues that investors face e.g. for some property businesses, suppliers & customers would expect a limited company as the business structure.

Many investors begin as BTL residential investors, and then move onto property lettings, sourcing, developing, trading and commercial property – we can ensure that you are as tax-efficient as possible as your property interests change.

We provide tax-planning services for all the major taxes. We also provide in-house VAT and PAYE services, and of course we deal with year-end personal and corporate tax returns.

2. ‘Lender-friendly’ property accounts service

These days, lenders are looking for investors to make verifiable profits and capital gains from their property investing – but investors are looking to pay the least tax possible by showing minimal profits.

Raising finance is obviously essential to property investors, given that the property business is a capital-intensive business to be in. In order to remain mortgage-able, more and more lenders expect to see professional-standard property accounts, as well as the usual tax returns, whether you are a sole trader, private investor, company and partnership.

We have developed a range of property accounts formats for landlords and companies, to enable investors to show their property business in the best possible light.

3. Acting as a ‘Virtual Finance Director’ for your property business

Property investing can be a lonely business, and a ‘fresh pair of eyes’ over your property plans can be useful.

As our Principal, Stephen Fay ACA, is an experienced property investor, we are able to provide an opinion on your plans in terms of general sense and credibility, what we see other investors doing successfully, non-tax issues to consider, and things to consider that you may not have thought of yet.

Most businesses use a Board of Directors to ensure business ideas are discussed with others, before being implemented. The property business involves some big numbers – one bad move could cause serious problems – so we are glad to provide an informal review of your plans, as part of our day to day work.

4. Estate Planning Services & Asset Protection

Many property investors generate substantial portfolios and property assets as a result of their efforts.

We can help you to plan for the ‘back-end’ of your property investing, whether it involves the use of trusts or a company to pass on assets to your family, or even ‘gearing up’ to generate tax-free funds which can be gifted away to leave a smaller net estate.

We also work with investors to help them to protect their portfolio in the event of the death of themselves, or a spouse or mortgage host. For example, life insurance can be expensive – we work with clients to determine which properties should be protected, how to buy protection cost-effectively, and what actions are required to protect the portfolio in the event of a death.

5. Staying up to date with property developments

No adviser can hope to stay up to date with all aspects of every business sector.

Many changes to tax law are introduced immediately – good advisers are ‘in the know’ and so will ensure that clients don’t miss out on any significant property claims, allowances, reliefs or expense deductions.

For example, capital allowances are often a significant source of unclaimed tax relief for property investors. In October 2010, the value of a capital allowances claim for certain HMO landlords was reduced by around 70% – this potential claim had been available since December 2008 – yet many ‘High Street’ accountants were unaware of this, and so after October 2010, some of their clients had missed out on this valuable relief (often worth tens of thousands of pounds).

As well as changes to tax law, we keep up to date with developments in the property investment world, such as lease options, assisted sales, rent-to-lease plans, rent-to-buy tenancy arrangements, mortgage hosting, new financing techniques etc.

6. Helping you to help yourself

We provide a range of professional-standard, formatted Excel Workbooks, to enable investors to record their property income and expenses, and check the figures to their bank statement. Our models were built by our Principal, Stephen Fay ACA, who is a portfolio landlord himself, and so has designed the Workbooks specifically for property investors.

For most investors, these Workbooks are perfectly adequate for their needs – they don’t need accounting software as such. Coupled with our business guides, tools, templates, trackers and calculators, property investors can choose to do more of the day to day book-keeping work – and reduce their fees – if they wish.

7. Connecting you with other property people

As we deal exclusively with property investors, we have a strong network of active property people to tap into. The chances are that we will have a client who may have experience of a new property activity you are planning, or professional contacts who can help you – or who may know someone who can help you.

We also act as advisers to many wealthy and cash-rich clients who are looking for credible and talented investors to go into partnership with – either via funding, or via an equity-sharing arrangement.

We often connect clients together, with the permission of both parties, where we feel there is a mutual benefit for each client. We also advise clients how to present themselves to private investors to attract funding.