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Housing Associations – Get What You Need To Make Finance & Billing Easier

Housing Associations – Get What You Need to Make Finance & Billing Easier

Housing Associations – Get What You Need to Make Finance & Billing Easier

We can’t say it often enough, so we’re going to say it again, we know that Housing Management Systems aren’t doing what’s needed for the property factoring functions in housing associations or local authorities. In a recent article we used the analogy of a professional camera versus the camera on a mobile phone. But that might even be a step too far, as HMS software barely touches what is needed to successfully, and efficiently manage the property factoring functions, whereas cameras on mobiles phones are actually pretty good! We’re shifting our focus from talking about apportionments, to finance and billing.

When you have better management of all property factoring finances coming in and out of your housing association at the touch of a button, it will help to improve governance, management information and will automate manual processes to save the organisation time and money.

There is a large amount of functionality within the CPL system, that is specific to finance and billing and deals with all of your accounting including budgeting, credit control, purchase ledger, and financial accounts. It is too much to convey in this article, so we’ve chosen a few to highlight, and welcome any questions or queries you may have about the problems you need some help with.


Budgets tab

You can create budgets for reference or for billing in advance rather than arrears. Various budget reports can be accessed from this location. This optional tab will only be relevant if your housing association is operating on a billing-in-advance or budgeted basis. This would then display to customers the exact position with the running total of actual charges against how much is budgeted for the year.

Diarised Charges

Regular contract work like cleaning and landscaping can be added to enable this to be processed for charges onto customer accounts.


You will be able to see a list of charges posted involving a particular customer with the opportunity to filter for invoiced/not invoiced and excluded. You also have the ability to record charges as disputed and exclude …and exclude an equal charge and opposite credit from being picked up for the upcoming customer invoice.

The Customer Global Menu

Contains options to run many processes in bulk relating to charges and invoicing within CPL. For example, issuing introductory letters and welcome packs, reversing processed financial batches; direct debit functionality and float refunds.

Process Owner Charges for Budgeted

I’d maybe reword to the following: “Budgets can be created which enables you to bill them out in advance at the start of the budget term and then run your reconciliation at the end of the budget term, comparing the actual charges posted throughout the term with the initial budget invoiced. Custom company templates can be created for you by our team. It  contains both the facility to bill out your budget at the start of the budget term and the option to run a Budget Reconciliation process at the end of the budget term which will compare what was billed originally for the budget to all actual charges which have been posted into the system. Custom company templates for each of these processes can be built during CPL’s implementation phase or at any point thereafter.

  • Diarised charges that have been set up across various developments can be processed in bulk.
  • Charges which have already been checked and released can be processed to your customer accounts ready to be picked up for invoicing.
  • Generate email reminders for all or selected contractors who have not responded to current estimate requests.
  • bulk delete inactive PL Accounts.


Setting up customer allocations in CPL allows you to enable regular reports to be run on customer payments and produce information on what is covered by these payments.

This would mean that if a customer was invoiced for £150, made up with a £30 management fee, £100 for standard repairs and £20 for payment to a sinking fund but only paid £100 then the allocations system could provide information on what the balance received should be allocated against.

If allocations set up are based on priorities for charge types and the management fee was set as the first priority, then standard repairs charges as the second and then sinking fund payments as the third, then a report could be run to look at the allocations information. There would be £30 marked against the management fee and £70 marked against the standard repairs. Outstanding amounts would be £30 for repairs and £20 for the sinking fund. This can help you make decisions on when to move pots of money around within your organisation.

Consolidate Tool

Multiple invoices in the hold file that relate to the same development, the same PL Account, and with the same customer or apportionment assigned to them can be combined into one entry in the hold file. This will result in a single charge appearing on the customer’s invoice.

The auto-consolidation feature can be activated through a system setting and will automatically run at the point of invoicing the customer to take the charges posted through the system for a period matching a customer invoice period.

This gives you just a small insight into what CPL can do for the finance and billing function within your housing association. If you want to find out even more, speak to the team today, and we can arrange to meet, or have a chat on the phone. You can tell us what your challenges are and we can identify if we can do what you need us to.

Download our finance and billing guide to your desktop here