I have recently come across a really nice piece of software for managing property portfolios. It is called Hammock (https://www.usehammock.com/).
Given that MTD has been delayed for rental income, it may seem odd that I am raising this now, but having walked through the product, it is not specifically as an MTD consideration that leads me to recommend it. It is a full-blown property management system. It carries details of your property, your tenancy agreements, whether your tenants are up to date with their rent. It also carries reminders for all of the various permits that you need which include gas safety certificates, electrical system reports, local government permits, insurance renewals etc.
What I really like about it is that it allows you to have multiple properties, and multiple portfolios, within one single registration. Taking one client family as an example; there are five family members, each of whom has at least one rental property. Two of them jointly own another property and three of them jointly own yet another. All seven properties can be held within one Hammock licence and the system can allocate to each family member the relevant share of income/expenditure.
It works much like any of the standard bookkeeping packages in that it connects to bank accounts and imports income and expenses. A nice feature is that where you receive income from an agent, it allows you to set up what the full rent is, and what the agent deduction is. When the net amount appears in the bank, it records the full rent and the related expense; but also, if a different amount comes in from the agent, it alerts you so that you can identify the difference and record it appropriately.
Another feature is that it links directly into the national property energy efficiency database for each property; this is of particular relevance as, from April 2025, you will not be allowed to create any new tenancy agreements if your property has an EPC rating below C. So it will highlight whether there is a problem coming down the line, giving you the opportunity to do something about it. That might be to invest into the property to bring it up to the required standard, or it might be to allow you to make an early decision to sell the property so that you are not faced with the upgrade costs (ballpark national average is £11,500 investment to move from one EPC to the next higher). One other idea here is to change from an annually renewable tenancy agreement, to a three/five-year agreement, with annual break clauses. That way, if the tenant stays, you are not creating a new tenancy, so the upgrading issue only arises if the tenant serves notice.
I strongly recommend this to anyone with more than one property – prices start from £4.99 per month.
If you are interested, take a look at their website, but please speak to me before signing up.