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5 Trust Accounting Mistakes You Need to Stop Making Now


Being a property agent isn’t an easy job. You put in at least eight hours at work each day and chances are you’re on the phone even while you're at home. There are a multitude of tasks that you are responsible for. Since you’re busy with so much work, it is only natural for you to overlook a few things. Unfortunately, more often than not, it is trust accounting.

We take a look at some common trust accounting mistakes that property agents often make.


1. Reconciling once or twice a month

Most of the property agents reconcile their data only one or two times a month. Of course, that sounds like a legitimate thing to do. However, it makes it harder for you to spot discrepancies if any. It makes up for a wise choice to balance all your accounts at the end of the day. Sparing a few extra minutes for this each day will help in keeping you up to date with the latest data.


2.Not having specific policy in place

If you do not have a general or trust-specific policy in place, we recommend you get onto it immediately. Every property management faces certain unavoidable situations now and then when a property owner or a tenant puts your agency in an uncomfortable position. Having a detailed and formal policy in place will save you all the trouble or at the very least, minimise it substantially.


3. Not keeping regular backups

We are going to give you the benefit of the doubt by assuming that you do not enter all the trust related information manually. There are tons of software applications available that can make your job easier for you. However, like all technology and programming, it isn’t impossible for it to malfunction. Consider using cloud-based software to ensure your data is never lost or breached. If cloud technology isn't an option, you should keep multiple backups with you to be prepared in the event something goes wrong.


4. Hiring unqualified people to do the job 

If you are a property management firm, then it is imperative for you to hire only specialised trust account managers. You probably deal with a lot of checks and numbers every single day. It makes up for a wise choice to employ a person who specialises in the field. This person should be capable of overseeing and managing your trust accounts.

Hiring unprofessional personnel can only make the job harder for you. Even what may seem like an insignificant mistake can put you in great trouble.


5. Ignoring fair trading

Fair Trading isn’t something that you can ignore. It is imperative for you to adhere to the rules and not to indulge in ‘questionable’ activities. One typical example of such instances is using the trust fund to pay for expenses that aren’t even allocated to that landlord. It is bad practice to pay for bills from funds that aren’t yours.

These were some of the common trust accounting mistakes that Property Agents or Property Management Firms often make. Avoiding these simple mistakes can significantly minimize errors and reinforce your image as a professional property manager.

These small gestures will enable you to bond with the tenants and make them feel at home. Once you ‘spoil’ them with all the love, they are unlikely to go elsewhere. Looking for a tradie to help your property maintenance tasks? Use Bricks+Agent's platform to post your job, hire a tradie and get the job done. 

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Topics: Insider, Property Management Advice

Jon Stul

Written by Jon Stul

Having spent over 12 years in the real estate industry covering all facets from residential through to commercial, established and off plan properties and sub-divisions, he has an in depth knowledge of the industry. Stepping out of the industry four years ago and moving interstate to expand a frozen yoghurt chain that has gone from 1 to 4 stores in the time he has been involved. This was recently sold to Made Group. Real estate has always been in his blood and it was a natural fit to start Bricks + Agent given the amount of insight he has into the industry as a whole. Having seen how all different forms of traditional marketing was used to the direction that it is now heading today, we think we have come up with a truly unique proposition that fits into the current state of the property maintenance market.

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