Property Accountant

Insight Recruitment Solutions
15 Mar 2017
14 Apr 2017
Contract Type
Full Time

The in-house investment manager "Investment Management" is a 100% subsidiary of the Companies’ Pension Trustee. The Property Accountant reports to the Private Markets & Tax Controller who reports to the Head of Finance and Operations.

The Property Accountant is responsible for all financial and operational aspects of the property portfolio. The incumbent provides the financial and accounting support to the property investment team, manages the day-to-day operational activities of the property business, and provides accurate MI on the property business.

Key Dimensions:

  • IM manages directly most of the Fund’s growth assets; approx. £14bn (30 June 2016)
  • IM staff 37 (30 June 2016)

Key Accountabilities:

  • Responsible for the finance and accounting function of the property portfolio and dealing with the custodian (State Street) on operational and accounting matters
  • Assist and support on all property related financial issues including funding, cash forecasting, VAT, tax and accounting issues.
  • Responsible for booking of daily property transactions in both SAP and MCH, including the transactions relating to any property sale or purchase.
  • Accurate reporting of weekly property valuations, accurate forecasting of property cash flows, and accurate reporting of property performance. This includes the reporting of property income on an accruals basis (the calculation and booking of the monthly deferred income journal), and the booking of the quarterly property revaluation journal.
  • Responsible for managing the monthly reconciliation processes (between MCH State Street accounting and property SAP accounting, and between property managing agents books and SAP)
  • Responsible for review and approval of statutory accounts for JV partnerships
  • Responsible for ensuring that Ropemaker expense invoices are accurately booked in MCH and SAP and paid on time (this will involve liaising with accounts payable team/Opentext)
  • Production of quarterly data for the property team’s performance reporting meetings and provision of accurate MI on the Fund’s property investments.

Operational & Tax Support

  • Liaising with Trading to ensure that AML assurance processes are carried out
  • Liaison with Treasury, Legal, direct tax, indirect tax and external auditors with regard to the property portfolio
  • Responsible for the accurate submission of the monthly VAT return for the property business
  • Responsible for accurate submission of IPD data
  • Responsible for managing and developing external relationships with the property managing agents (Jones Lang Lasalle and CRM), joint venture partners, development partners, property benchmarking company (IPD) and the Fund’s external valuer Cushman & Wakefield.
  • Challenge current processes and standards and to develop new standardised techniques or approaches to improve the efficiency of the processes.

Key Challenges:

  • The business is constantly changing both in terms of asset allocation and accounting solutions it currently uses. The post-holder will be comfortable with change.
  • Systems - the IM property team use a number of systems including MCH mystatestreet accounting, SAP PRC, Opentext, as well as external systems provided by the managing agents. The Property Accountant will need to utilise these systems to deliver on his/her responsibilities
  • A number of reconciliations are carried out between the MCH and SAP systems and between systems and the Managing Agent’s on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. The post-holder will be comfortable with both performing and reviewing reconciliations
  • There will be a requirement to prioritise multiple work demands, sometimes in a time-pressurised environment.

Essential Education:

  • University degree
  • Qualified accountant (ACA, ACCA, CIMA)

Essential Experience and Job Requirements:

  • Strong understanding of accounting functions in the property investment business
  • Great attention to detail as the role will include dealing with the technical issues of property investment accounting and this will require getting involved in a great level of detail
  • Self-starter and driving for solutions
  • High level of numeracy

Other Essential Skills and Knowledge:

  • Bias towards excellence and thrive for continuous improvement
  • Great delivery track record
  • Strong IT skills including advanced/experienced MS Excel user.

Desirable Criteria:

  • Prior experience of working in the accounting team of a property investment business
  • Prior experience of managing stakeholder relationships with property managing agents, solicitors, and external auditors