This article includes:
- Getting it right before you start
- Getting started
- Setting up your default settings
Opening Balances are the breakdown of ALL the monies you hold in your Client Account and, if applicable, Deposit Account. These will need adding into Alto to give you starting balances which reconcile precisely with these Accounts. This may also include monies owed to you such as agency fees.
According to RICS, Rule 8 states that: “the aim is to ensure that clients’ money can be clearly linked to the clients to whom it belongs and is protected on their behalf at all times.”
In preparation for adding your Opening Balances to Landlord, Property, Tenancy and Supplier records, it's recommended that you clear down your Client Account to its lowest possible balance to reduce the number of entries that you need to add into Alto.
Outlined below are a series of articles to help guide you through setting up your default settings and entering your Opening Balances.
In preparation, create a detailed report that shows the breakdown of monies held in your Client Account and to whom it belongs. This will include:
- Rent paid in advance, not yet paid out to the Landlord
- Move in money for new tenancies
- Landlord floats or retained money
- Overseas tax that you are holding
- Tenant Deposits:
- Registered deposits held in a Deposit Scheme
- Deposits for new tenancies that have not been transferred to a Deposit Scheme
- Deposits returned from the Deposits Scheme that are currently held in your Client Account
- Uncleared payments out such as uncleared cheques or BACS payments
- Monies that cannot be identified which can be added as a suspense balance
- Agency fees
- Suppliers that have not yet been paid where cash is held
You will need access to System Administration, to edit your default settings. Your appointed Group Administrator will have access to these permissions
It's important that your default settings in System Administration have been configured correctly before starting to edit records, in preparation of going live with your Accounts, as there are selections through the setup which they will affect.
After configuring the System Administration settings, you are ready to set up the (default) initial settings on Landlord, Property, Tenancy and Supplier records, ensuring they're correct before entering any Opening Balances or Accounts transactions.
It's essential System Administration settings are set up prior to starting the setup of records. The settings will enable you to set standards in Alto which can be selected when setting up each Landlord, Property, Tenancy and Supplier records
The Initial settings walkthrough guide is set out in the order in which you should work through it, with links to each article.
These steps should be completed to help ensure you have your records set up correctly once your data has been migrated and before your Accounts go live.
|Initial settings on a landlord, click here||Checked/Completed|
|Contact Delivery Method|
|Adding Bank Details|
|Setting up Payment Groups|
|Setting up Payment Types|
|Adding Landlord Overseas Tax details|
|Initial settings on a lettings property, click here||Checked/Completed|
|Changing Property Ownership|
|Editing Agency Commission|
|Editing Management Type|
|Initial settings and charges on a tenancy, click here||Checked/Completed|
|Setting the Account Delivery Method(s)|
|Setting the Notice Address|
|Setting up the first rent charge|
|Setting up arrears charges|
|Initial settings when adding a supplier, click here||Checked/Completed|
|Setting the Account/Work Order Delivery Method(s)|
|Adding Bank Details|
|Changing Payment Method|
|Adding Payment Terms|
|Setting up a commission charge|
The Opening Balances walkthrough guide is set out in the order which you should work through it, with links to each article.
At this time, your default settings in System Administration, and your initial settings for your records, should be configured correctly. You can now begin to add Opening Balances and then any Accounts.
|Adding Opening Balances - Accounts||Checked/Completed|
|Opening Balance on Applicant, click here|
|Opening Balance on Tenancy, click here|
|Opening Balance on Tenant, click here|
|Opening Balance - Landlord (including retention), click here|
|Opening Balance - Landlord agency fees, click here|
|Opening Balance on Supplier, click here|
|Opening Balance deposit money, click here|