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A Day in the Life of a Rural Surveyor

4th December 2018

Insider advice from Mark Mugliston, Residential Sales Manager, in his monthly column in the Diss Express.

I’ve written before on the work of my colleagues in auctions, holiday lettings, building consultancy and others. Perhaps surprisingly, a fair bit of our rural surveyors work overlaps with mine and quite frequently I pack my wellies and head out to a property with Scott or Richard to provide a joint valuation. This can often be when we are considering whether a property might be best sold at auction.  Because they are qualified with the Royal Institution of Charted Surveyors, we also work together on probate valuations or where a situation might end up in court.

However, that’s only a small part of their skill set so when Scott Parke, one of our Agricultural surveyors, rang and said he was visiting Diss, I grabbed him for a chat.  I’ll let him tell you what he told me.

“The old cliché comes to mind that no two days are the same, but this really does apply to the rural surveying profession. Often I am asked by friends, ‘so what do you actually do?’ and this often ends up with a long conversation explaining all of the different aspects of land and property we are involved with and advise on.  Said friends left wishing they had never asked!

“The truth is, no day is ever the same; we could be inspecting estate cottages to prepare particulars for re-letting, dealing with boundary disputes, liaising with utility companies on behalf of clients affected by pipeline schemes, negotiating compensation claims, advising on countryside stewardship options and applications or giving farmers and landowners an update on the land market. We could be out valuing a property for a prospective client, reviewing a tenancy agreement for a farming client, applying for a public footpath diversion or assessing the development potential of a piece of land or an old farm building.

“Our team’s client portfolio is incredibly diverse, with both arable and livestock farms and estates of all sizes. I really enjoy visiting our clients on their own turf, getting to know the people who work on the farm and seeing their property first hand. It really is important to be able to adjust and to get a real feel for a client’s business.  It's the only way to understand the client's objectives and challenges and to be in a position to offer solutions and seek out opportunities.

“As the 29th March draws closer and in the years to come, we are likely to see a big change in agricultural policy in the UK.  Many farmers, who haven’t already, will take the opportunity to review their businesses and ensure it is future proof by improving efficiency, reducing costs and exploring diversification opportunities. We aim to be right beside them offering our advice on the options available and to recommend the best way forward.

“Personally, I have only been in this line of work for just over four years, but so far I really have enjoyed it and if you are looking for a career with a huge variety of work, that involves being out enjoying the countryside and working closely with rural businesses, then the rural surveying profession could be right up your street.”

If this type of work sounds interesting to you, get in touch and we’ll be happy to talk to any budding rural surveyors about how to get into the industry.