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The monthly magazine providing news analysis and professional research for the discerning private investor/landlord

How to Choose and Work With a Book-Keeper

Stephen Fay FCA, specialist property accountant, comments

Many property investors want to leverage not only their money, but also their time, and working with a book-keeper can mean that more precious time is spent on value-adding tasks rather than the more routine tasks. This article sets out how to choose a book-keeper, and how to work with them to get maximum value from their work.  

Is a book-keeper even required?
Fundamentally, for most property investors this is a time vs money question i.e. is the task of book-keeping a good use of your time?  Everyone has a finite numbers of hours to devote to their property business, and successful people are generally those who spend their time on the tasks that only they can do, and that provide the most value.  

On the other hand, some landlords accounts and business affairs are simple and they may already have a 'DIY' spreadsheet that isn't too onerous, and that they are happy to deal with themselves - and there is certainly nothing wrong with investors being very close to the finances of their own business.

Finally, there is the question of choice - some investors simply don't want to do their own book-keeping - to some (me included), the point of self-employment is to pick and choose the tasks they are good at AND enjoy, and 'outsource' everything else. Having a book-keeper is a little luxury that many landlords feel is worth the money.

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