Being able to find a good accountant is instrumental to the success of most property investors, and while there are many factors to consider when building your financial team, experience and knowledge are often the most effective indicators of the value they can add to your portfolio.
Keshab Chartered Accountants’ Munzurul Khan has helped Smart Property Investment’s Phil Tarrant build his multi-property portfolio and, according to him, the secret to their strong relationship is their shared passion for property.
“When I sit down with someone, I say, ‘I myself don't have a lot of shares … [or] a lot of Managed Funds and so forth, and because I don't have my own ... practical experience in terms [of these], I'm not the best person to advise anything about [them],” he said.
For him, the ability to add value to an investor’s portfolio lies in having practical knowledge about a certain asset class. An accountant who specialises in property, or any particular asset class, will work better than an accountant who considers himself a “Jack of all trades”.
According to Munzurul: “It's all about the practical knowledge. Is your accountant also a property investor … ? What's the mindset of your accountant? Accountants are generally conservative, and that's good—conservative at a level where it is also practical.”
Finding a good accountant is almost like seeking a new trusted friend—you have to be able to communicate well about your goals as well as your capabilities and limitation as a property investor.
Like any property professional, accountants can only work as well as they know their clients.
“Your accountant may know everything in the world but if [you] don't relate to your accountant, [it could be meaningless],” Munzurul said.
Instead of making you feel uneasy whenever talking about your portfolio or your financial circumstance, the right accountant will make a “rejuvenating experience” out of it, according to Phil.
Every conversation you have will be an opportunity to reassess your strategies and ensure that you’re staying on track towards achieving your goals, and you will look forward to these talks because your accountant is able to relay even the most complicated ideas through simple words. After all, no two property investment journey will ever be the same, so it’s absolutely necessary that your financial team is knowledgeable about your personal financial circumstance for them to give you the best advice.
Phil said: “There's a lot of principles and theories and strategies and experiences [you will] speak about, [and your accountant] should be trying to apply them to your particular circumstances and situation.”
“Use … information [from your own journey] to become a better property investor,” he concluded.
Tune in to Munzurul Khan’s new episode on The Smart Property Investment Show to know which structure is best to buy in, how the ownership of a property works when referring to names, as well as the risks associated with having two names on a mortgage and title and which one is preferable to new home buyers.