Import receipts

The Import Receipts functionality enables you to import bank transactions into your Alto software and match the receipts to outstanding tenancy and contact charges.

This user guide takes you through the following process:  

  1. Preparation
  2. Creating a file of bank transactions to import into Alto
  3. Importing the bank transaction file into Alto
  4. Matching receipts to contact or tenancy records, or charges
  5. Pinning a reference to a contact or tenancy record, or charge
  6. Confirming the import of receipts into Alto

Alternatively, you can watch the short video below:

This article includes: 

Preparation

 Note

You will need access to System Administration, to edit your default settings. Your appointed Group Administrator will have access to these permissions

You must first link the import receipt file format to your client bank account.

  1. Click Tools on the main toolbar
  2. On the side menu, under System Tools, click System Administration
  3. Click Client Bank Accounts 
  4. Click Edit in the middle column of each client account
  5. Select an Import Receipts File Format from the dropdown menu
  6. Click Save

Now, specify the number of clearance days to be applied to imported receipts (default is 0 days). 

  1. Click Tools on the main toolbar
  2. On the side menu, under System Tools, click System Administration
  3. Click Group Settings
  4. Scroll down and click Payment and Receipt Settings at the bottom of the page
  5. Alongside Imported Receipt, edit the number of Clearance Days
  6. Click Save

 Finally, specify which group roles should have access to Receipt Import.

  1. Click Tools on the main toolbar
  2. On the side menu, under System Tools, click System Administration
  3. Click Group Roles
  4. Click Edit
  5. Click Read/Write next to ReceiptImport in the list

Set up payment references

Imported receipts are matched to records and/or charges using the imported receipt reference and the payment reference set up in Alto.  

A payment reference MUST be a unique reference and is given to the tenant for use when they make a payment. It must be a minimum of six characters and is set up on either a charge, a tenancy or a contact record.

  • Charge Payment Reference only matches a receipt with that reference to the specific charge, i.e. rent

    1. Click Tenancy on the main toolbar
    2. Select the relevant tenancy from Recent & Favourite Tenancies
      1. Alternatively, find the tenancy using the Search Tenancies bar in the top right
    3. Click Actions 
    4. In the dropdown menu, click Charge
    5. Click Edit on the charge to which the payment reference needs to be added
    6. Click the Options tab 
    7. Add a unique Payment Reference
    8. Click the Charge tab
    9. Click OK
    10. Click Close
  • Contact Payment Reference will match any receipt with that reference to any outstanding contact charge

    1. Click Contacts on the main toolbar
    2. Select the relevant contact from Recent & Favourite Contacts
      1. Alternatively, find the contact using the Search Contacts bar in the top right
    3. Click Contact on the side menu
    4. Click the Contact top tab
    5. Add a unique Payment Reference
    6. Click Save
  • Tenancy Payment Reference will match any receipt with that reference to any outstanding charges on the tenancy

    1. Click Tenancy on the main toolbar
    2. Select the relevant tenancy from Recent & Favourite Tenancies
      1. Alternatively, find the tenancy using the Search Tenancies bar in the top right
    3. Click Tenancy on the side menu
    4. Click the Details top tab
    5. Add a unique Payment Reference
    6. Click Save

 Note

Duplicate references aren't allowed. If an import receipt reference matches the Payment Reference on more than one record, the receipt cannot be allocated until the Payment Reference has been removed from one of the records, i.e. it is no longer a duplicate. 

If you want to track receipts and arrears for sharers at a tenant level, you must ensure that each tenant has their own 'tenant' rent charges and a unique Payment Reference

If tenants are being treated as 'jointly and severally liable' but each sharer is making a separate payment, the rent charge should be at tenancy level and all the sharers should quote the same Payment Reference  

Set charges to raise in advance of their due date

If your tenants commonly pay a day or more ahead of the rent due date, it's important to set each rent charge to raise earlier than the date which it is due. This will ensure the charge is available in Import Receipts when the payment is received, and it won't cause it to be in arrears.

  1. Click Actions
  2. In the dropdown menu, click Charge
  3. Click Edit on the relevant charge 
  4. Click the Options tab 
  5. Add a number of days to Raise Days in Advance. We suggest at least 7
  6. Click the Charge tab
  7. Click OK
  8. Click Close

Create a file of bank transactions to import into Alto

Log in to your online banking and export the bank transactions in the format as specified in Alto, and as described in the Preparation steps above.  

Alto will only import bank credit transactions. Debit transactions in the file will be ignored.  

Import the bank transaction file into Alto

  1. Click Accounts on the main toolbar
  2. Click Import Receipts on the side menu
  3. Click the Client Accounts top tab
  4. Click View on the relevant bank account 
  5. Click Upload File 
  6. Click Choose a file
  7. Browse for the file, select it, and click Open
  8. Click Upload File. The number of receipts imported displays
  9. Click Refresh

If you have selected a bank file which you previously uploaded, you'll have the option to Import All Receipts again, Import All Except Duplicates or Cancel Upload and upload another file.

Alto compares the date range of the transactions being imported against previously imported transactions in the same date range.

Matching Receipts

Alto will attempt to match the receipts on the import file to the outstanding charges. Any payment transactions (debits) in the import file will be ignored.  

The first time you import a receipt file, no receipts will be auto-matched. The process of matching and pinning each receipt to a charge is carried out, this is explained below.

Alto auto-matches receipts to charges when:

  • The receipt Payment Reference matches the Payment Reference on a charge, tenancy or contact record
  • The Payment Reference has previously been matched and 'pinned' to a charge, tenancy or contact record 

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  • Auto-Matching Rules
    • If the receipt amount exceeds the charge outstanding amount, the balance is receipted as Held Monies
    • If there is more than one outstanding charge with a matching Payment Reference, Alto matches to the oldest charge first
    • If the receipt is less than the charge amount, it's allocated as a partial receipt
    • If the receipt cannot be allocated in full, it isn't matched. This is to prevent an amount being receipted as Held Monies and being allocated to a non-matching charge at a later date
    • If the receipt reference matches the pinned Payment Reference on a contact record or tenancy record
    • If the receipt reference matches a pinned Payment Reference on an outstanding charge
    • The receipt is allocated to any outstanding charges of a matching type* (tenant or tenancy) for the contact or tenancy record where Payment Reference = blank
    • If there are no outstanding charges, the amount must be receipted as Held Monies outside of import receipts
  • Matching Type
    • If the Payment Reference is on a tenancy record - receipts are only allocated to tenancy charges
    • If the Payment Reference is on a contact record - receipts are only allocated to contact charges including tenant charges, not tenancy
    • If the import reference is on outstanding charge/s AND the contact/tenancy record, Alto follows the rules above re: the reference is on the charge
    • Matches are not performed on amount, date or charge item

Un-Matched Payments

The total number and value of the items in the Un-Matched and Match Payments section is displayed.  

Click anywhere on the green or orange banner to expand and display the individual receipts.  

  • Probability percentage 
    • Payment Reference and amount match - 90%
    • Reference Match only - 80%
    • Payment Match only - 70%
  • Delete
    • Click on the bin icon to delete an item from the list. This may be used if you receipt manually and not through Import Receipts. You might also want to use this option if the receipt has previously been entered into Alto
  • Confirm
    • Click the blue tickbox to confirm a match. This moves the receipt into the Matched Payments section. If you want receipts with this payment reference to be auto-matched in the future, it must be pinned 
  • ? Fuzzy Matches
    • Any receipts not matched using the rules above appear with a ?. Click on the ? to display potential matches
  • Potential matches and their probability percentage
    • Part of the import reference matches part of the tenancy name and address, or contact name and address on a record
    • Import amount matches the charge amount
    • Import dates matches the charge date
    • The probability percentage decreases depending upon the number of rules the receipt matches

In the example below, the receipt for £120 has a reference of 'Mr Bobby Bingle'.  This matches 50% to a contact with that name and an outstanding charge for the same amount. The 10% matches shown only match the receipt based on the charge date or the charge amount.  

  • Tick the charge you want to allocate the receipt to
    • If there are no charges outstanding but a potential record match has been identified, you can choose to enter the receipt as Held Monies
    • You can allocate a receipt to multiple charges if the charges are linked to the same record
    • You can select multiple charges for the same contact/tenancy if the sum of the charges is equal to or less than the receipt amount
    • If the receipt amount is more than the amount of the charges selected, the balance will be receipted as Held Monies and display below the selected charge/s
  • Duplicate References
    • If an import reference matches the reference on more than one record, it cannot be allocated until the reference has been removed from one of the records
    • Click Display duplicated references to see the records assigned to the same payment reference

 Note

If the duplicate reference is on a charge, you cannot remove the reference.  You will need to allocate the receipt manually

Matched Payments

Once you have selected the matched receipt to the charge, by pinning a reference to a contact or tenancy record or charge, Alto will remember the match for the next time you import a file.

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  1. Click the green banner on Matched Payments to display a full list 
  2. Click the Pin icon on the right of a matched item
  3. Click and drag your mouse to highlight the reference
  4. Click on either Charge or Tenancy, depending which of these your future receipt is to be matched to
  5. Click Pin Reference

To review a pinned item:

  1. Click the green banner on Matched Payments to display a full list 
  2. Click Review 
  3. Click Review. You can view and edit the pinned reference 

To forget a pinned item:

  1. Click the green banner on Matched Payments to display a full list 
  2. Click Review
  3. Click Forget. The green pin will replace the red Review button

To remove a pinned item:

  1. Click the green banner on Matched Payments to display a full list 
  2. Click the X if you want the Matched Payment to return to Un-Matched Payment

Confirming import

  1. Click Import Receipts 
    • All receipts in the Matched Payments are posted in Alto
    • The receipt date and bank reference are read from the import file
    • You have the option of clearing the receipts on the Un-Matched Payment section
    • If you click No, you can clear them later by clicking Clear Un-Matched on the top of the list
    • A Timeline entry is added to the Import ReceiptsTimeline tab with a report detailing the receipts imported and the receipts remaining in the Un-Matched Payment section
    • A receipt Timeline entry will be added to the tenancy or contact record
    • If you have opted to send receipts documents, they will be sent via the contact's preferred Account Delivery Method

 Note

If you click Cancel to exit Import Receipt, without updating, all manual matches are lost and moved back to the Un-Matched Payment section

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