Gary shares his first-hand account of what it's like working with Provestor, the property accountants.
Gary Woolridge - Director Hinton and Higgs Limited
Back in 2017, IT contractor Gary Woolridge found himself looking for intuitive ways to invest some surplus cash. Alongside his wife Anne, and her former MD Alan, he made the decision that property was the way forward and Hinton and Higgs Limited was born.
Hinton and Higgs isn’t your typical buy-to-let company; it owns a large building, which houses three spacious offices and three training rooms, all managed by the founders. The building’s used by both Gary and his tenants. “You buy a building, you rent it out. And with a bit of luck, you're going to make a few quid.” says Gary.
Gary was running his own successful contracting business when he decided to move into property. He has been a client of inniAccounts, our contractor accounting sister company, since 2015 and decided he’d like our support with his property business too.
After setting up the company, finding and purchasing a property and getting it ready for occupants, Gary was faced with an all too familiar challenge - Covid-19. Luckily, he had prepared wisely for uncertainty and was able to keep the property ticking over until restrictions were lifted. He recalls the support he received from Provestor during this period, “I didn't see any change in the quality or level of service during lockdown.” Being a digital-first business meant that Provestor were able to adjust smoothly to working remotely, continuing to support clients without the need to furlough staff or increase response times.
Day-to-day, Gary manages the company records himself, completing his bookkeeping using secure open banking feeds. “The software is a real lifeline and makes the day-to-day stuff really easy. I spend half an hour every couple of weeks sorting the figures out and that's it, done! I don't think about it. It's great.”
As with the majority of property investors, time is precious for Gary and the Hinton and Higgs team. The biggest timesaving feature in the software for him is the ability to create repeating payments. Whether it’s a window cleaning payment, IT support charges or gas bill, he says that “when a transaction comes in, it's [reconciled with] one click.” He also loves the AI technology in the software, which learns as you use it: “You just type in ‘Gas’ the previous info pops up, and you see it's filled in. You've done it once and the software remembers it.”
Gary also shares his ideas and feedback with our software development team, and provides input on our latest features. This is the beauty of building an in-house software solution; updates that make a real difference to how a client runs their business can be scoped and built extremely quickly.
Gary recognises that great customer service is the key to finding a forever accountant. As he expressed. “I've always had good service from the Provestor team, done in a friendly and courteous manner - it's a pleasure to deal with people like that. That's why I'm here, because you do exactly what we need you to do and you do it well.”
The Prime Minister’s announcement of a 1.25 percentage point rise in tax on dividend shares may come as a blow to property investors operating via a limited company, particularly after the increase to corporation tax announced in the March budget.
John Lewis and Lloyds Banking Group have both recently announced plans to diversify into the residential property market.
Welcome to the first Provestor software update blog! 👋 We’re very lucky to have a superb in-house team of developers working on our award-winning accountancy software. Going forward, we’ll be sharing the latest software releases, technical news and updates from our development team.