Kett Country Cottages - Case Study
Kett Country Cottages was established in 2003 and now looks after around 200 self catering cottages in Norfolk.
“Letting holiday cottages may seem like a relatively straightforward business but the financial administration is actually quite complicated. We need skilled support to ensure we keep accurate and timely records of all transactions and by using AFP we have freed up our staff so that we can focus on selling holidays and building stronger relationships with our property owners”
Kett started out with a handful of cottages in 2003. It used an old DOS based system to monitor its bookings but separately needed some robust accounting support to help manage its own company finances. Within a few years the business was processing thousands of holiday booking for hundreds of properties in north Norfolk.
The directors of the business were keen to establish rigorous accounting processes and to develop some key performance indicators to help measure the growth of the business. As the number of staff grew Kett required payroll and PAYE management. Holiday cottage wners not only require timely remittance of the monies from holidaymakers but also need accurate records so that they could meet their obligations with HMRC.
The business has grown into one of the leading holiday cottage letting businesses in Norfolk. The Kett team not only have the experience to provide excellent customer service, but thanks to AFP they also have time. As the cost of using AFP as its finance department is considerably less than employing in-house specialists Kett also saves money and is consequently more profitable.
What we’ve accomplished:
Using QuickBooks software AFP is able to efficiently record all the commission income and revenue from ancillary services such as cleaning and gardening. They also monitor payments to suppliers and oversee the allocation of commission from owners to the Company.
Holiday letting is a seasonal business in two respects. There are disproportionately more bookings in the Jan – Mar quarter and disproportionately more holidays taken during the school holidays; so it is vital that Kett understands and manages its cash flow. AFP has helped to develop accurate budgeting and forward cash forecasting.
As Kett has improved its booking software AFP has ensured that data can be exported into the Company’s financial records in a seamless fashion which means that owner and supplier payments can be managed much more efficiently.
Effective management of day to day finances means that AFP is well placed to process Kett’s year-end financial accounts and tax computations.