Construction & Property Accountants2024-03-21T08:48:12+00:00

Construction & Property

Specialist accounting expertise for construction and property businesses.

Choose specialist construction accountants or property accountants who will help you plan and grow your business

Our Construction & Property experts work with a wide range of clients within the industry ranging from architects, contractors, developers, landlords and everything in between. We understand that construction businesses are very different from other owner-managed businesses, so having construction or landlord specialist accountants is critical.

We’re able to advise on technology that will reduce your admin and allow your business to scale, ranging from project management software for your construction projects through to inventory management software to track materials. We also have a specialist outsourcing team should you wish to outsource the admin and focus on your day-to-day construction/property work, which also allows varying levels of management reporting to you to support decision-making. 

We have tax experts with a wealth of expertise that can advise on various different areas such as the VAT implications of property transactions, CIS, group restructuring, the VAT reverse charge and much more. You can have peace of mind that we’ll be able to support you throughout your business journey.

construction accountants

We currently work with

Our Services Include:

  • CIS registration & administration

  • Payroll including payments to subcontractors that meet CIS requirements and pension administration where necessary

  • Annual compliance services such as your year end accounts

  • Remuneration planning to ensure you pay yourself in the most tax-efficient manner

  • Cloud accounting – automating your systems and processes

  • A full outsourced finance department

db sharp & sons limited

“The team have helped us grow and become more professional. Dave has been invaluable in advising us. He has helped our accounts team so much and they now absolutely love Xero!”

David Sharp, D.B. Sharp and Sons Limited

“Stock taking was a nightmare and we kept everything on spreadsheets until we spoke to the team. Switching over to Xero was an easy process.”

Mick Ginn, Macron Store Hertfordshire

“One of my previous headaches was always the absence of reliable management information and that often consumed my time unnecessarily. Since working with the team, they have implemented new systems, enhanced existing systems and they provide information on a monthly basis which is accurate and clearly communicated. This allows me to spend time doing what I should be doing.

Combine that with their sector expertise, knowledge and professionalism we would have no hesitation in recommending their services to anyone.”

Sheldon Paule, Cameron Kennedy

“We’ve always found the team to be responsive, helpful, and proactive in suggesting ways for us to improve our processes. In particular, we have been happy with the move from Sage to Xero, which has made our lives much easier as we grow our business.”

Jack Waley-Cohen, what3words
total negotiation group

“As our accountants and advisors, the Smart Accountants have always been on hand to support our business but recently they helped the sale of our business to an Employee Ownership Trust. Ultimately this transaction helped us with obtaining a fair price for the business, ensuring long-term succession, and rewarding our employees. The team supported us from the very initial advice and planning stage right through to the implementation and were on hand to offer their expertise throughout.”

Mark Cranstoun, Total Negotiation Group

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Construction FAQ’s

The construction industry is very different to traditional accounting. Depending on whether you are a main contractor or sub-contractor (subbie) will have an impact on your reporting requirements.

CIS is the main difference for construction businesses. CIS stands for Construction Industry Scheme.

If you are the main contractor, you need to ensure you deduct CIS tax from your subbies, at a rate of 20% or 30%. When you engage a new subbie you need to obtain their UTR and NI number and approve them with HMRC. If HMRC approves the subbie then 20% is deducted from their labour costs, if they are not approved then the contractor should apply the emergency rate of CIS which is 30%.

As the main contractor, you need to issue CIS statements on a monthly basis to your subbies, so that the subbie has a record of the CIS paid over (on their behalf) to HMRC. The subbie will then declare the CIS deduction on their end of year personal tax return. This is a legal requirement to provide monthly statements and can result in a fine. However, in practice this can often be overlooked.

If you suffer CIS and have a PAYE scheme then CIS is reported through the PAYE scheme.

CIS is only calculated on the labour element of an invoice, i.e. any materials included on an invoice should not form the calculation for CIS.

Construction accountants understand that VAT is another consideration. There are different rates of VAT depending on the work involved. For example, new builds attract zero-rated sales and therefore businesses only working on new builds would typically receive VAT refunds.

They will ensure you are paying the correct amount of CIS and VAT and they will also ensure you are deducting appropriate expenses. They will also ensure you are compliant in terms of completing and submitting the appropriate paperwork for HMRC in a timely fashion.

They will understand the cash flow complexities and can assist with delivering sophisticated cash flow forecasts. They will also understand the industry terminology, the impact of stage payments, planning applications, building regulations etc and the impact of retentions.

True construction accountants will be able to discuss financing option and when potentially needing bridging loans etc as well as being able to help out with forecasts and mapping out scenarios.

This will depend on your cash flow requirements. Cash accounting means you pay and deduct the VAT as and when you pay and receive invoices. The accruals basis, this is where the VAT is calculated on the receipt or issue of an invoice.

At The Smart Accountants we have several options when considering your bookkeeping requirements:

Utilise technology, photos of receipts, bank feeds, online accounting platforms such as Xero.

Enter purchases and sales into a system and then outsource the reconciliation of control accounts.

Fully outsource, simply hand over (scan / physically drop) paperwork and leave it to the bookkeeping team.

With all options, we can assist in advanced reporting so you know where you are with your business.

If you come within the scheme then you need to file a CIS return on a monthly basis.

This can be tricky when you’re in the middle of the chain, for example, you are working for the main contractor, but also engage subbies. Therefore you are potentially being stopped CIS from your contractor and stopping CIS from your subbies. This creates two CIS accounts and is often the downfall of construction businesses who do not control the liability or refund position.

Typically businesses will manage projects manually, whether that be via an Excel spreadsheet or even worse, in their heads.

Construction accountants will use technology apps such as WorkflowMax and SimPro, these will help manage staff, timesheets, track the profitability of projects. Apps are individual products that integrate with your cloud accounting software, which provides a seamless and integrated software package.

Most cloud accounting systems have a built-in payroll module, which you could manage yourself.

An alternative is to outsource your payroll, so that the headache of dealing with starters, leavers, reimbursed expenses etc are taken care of.

Once you have up to date information, this will allow you to concentrate on business and tax planning.

We can be involved in your business as much or as little as you need us to be.

Some clients opt for a pre year-end meeting, this allows the time for a review of the financial information to date and provides an opportunity to establish and more importantly implement tax planning.

The Next Steps

If you’d like further information or to discuss how we can support your construction/property business, please get in touch and one of our construction accountants will be happy to talk to you. 

Please call us on 0845 606 9632, email us at or complete the contact form below.