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Subject: Vetting for an HOA Accountant, suggestions?
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Author Messages
TracyeH
(North Carolina)

Posts:57


04/10/2018 12:35 PM  
Any suggestions in finding a HOA accountant?
GenoS
(Florida)

Posts:2349


04/10/2018 1:58 PM  
Ask a few traditional full property managers/mgmt companies if they'd be willing to do only your bookkeeping and accounting. That's what we do.
TracyeH
(North Carolina)

Posts:57


04/10/2018 2:07 PM  
We are looking into a management company but we have to do the homework on that then get the community approval on it. Right now the new board just wants to hire an outside accountant to handle the money. So most people here use a management company to handle the accounting? Thanks for the input.
MarkM19
(Texas)

Posts:85


04/10/2018 2:31 PM  
TracyeH,
I would make sure that you layout all of the issues you have had in the past. They usually include but are not limited to some here.

1) How many customers do they currently have? Most companies take on new customers and add to workload of existing employees.

2) How do they handle A/P and A/R? Do they have a Lockbox for payments to be sent to and how quickly do customers records reflect payments. How quickly do they pay vendors? Our Management company said when we interviewed them they pay bills every day. The truth is they pay bill for someone everyday but it took 30 days to get all of the approvals for regular payments. Ask the question.

3) How do they handle expedited payments and do the charge your HOA for them? We negotiated that a certain number a month would not be charged. You won't get it if you don't ask.

4) Collections who gets paid the Late fees? When do they go to collections?

Trust me I have missed way more than I remembered. Really important to be ready so that your reason for change is completely covered. It is a pain for customers to make a change who use direct deposits.
GenoS
(Florida)

Posts:2349


04/10/2018 2:37 PM  
Mark makes some good points. I'd worry less about how much of a pain it is for owners to change their direct deposit ACH payments. Not that anyone would want to make their lives difficult on purpose, but for me that would be of minimal concern. Owners have to figure out how to pay regardless.
TimB4
(Virginia)

Posts:15954


04/10/2018 3:13 PM  
Tracy,

We are self managed, 130 lots.
As Treasurer, I pick up the checks and make the deposits.
Hiring an accountant can be expensive. We were given a quote of $1,500 per month.

Have you considered hiring an independent contractor for bookkeeping?
Our cost was $450 per month.
We did this awhile back and hired from within the community.
We quit doing it because I took the job seriously and was duplicating a lot of the work.

Have you considered looking at Banks who offer this service?
Many banks are recognizing the need and are willing to offer this service.
I have not done a lot of investigation into the options.

TimB4
(Virginia)

Posts:15954


04/10/2018 3:15 PM  
To add to what Mark had,

I would also include that a hard copy ledger be provided at the end of each year.



Keep in mind that hiring someone to "handle the money" doesn't mean that the Treasurer has a whole lot less to do. The Treasurer should still:

1) spot check ledgers
2) reconcile bank statements
3) pay the bills and maintain the check book
4) maintain historical financial records
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Forums > Homeowner Association > HOA Discussions > Vetting for an HOA Accountant, suggestions?



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