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News & opinion

16 JUL 2018

RICS Matrics Young Surveyor of the Year: finding value in surveying

Hard work and talent gained Helena Tibbitts a series of promotions and now the coveted Valuation category RICS Matrics Young Surveyor of the Year award.

Helena explains why valuation excites her and why she wants to help more candidates from diverse backgrounds into the profession.

It seems incredible now, but I am afraid to say that when I was at school I had no idea that surveying even existed as a career. That oversight is something I am now trying to address by visiting schools and universities to talk to young people about the many opportunities that exist in this varied and exciting profession.

Delivering quality in a timely manner

When a client requests a valuation it is because they want to act on the information given. It follows that the valuation needs to be provided in a timely manner so that the client can make sound financial decisions based on it. So, for me, providing valuations as quickly as possible is an important part of our service.

Another factor to consider is accuracy, which is obviously critical. So, there can be a perceived tension between taking time to produce an accurate valuation, and the need to deliver it in a timely manner.

I really enjoy this challenge. For example, I was recently asked to provide a decennial charge valuation on a large estate. I was given just three weeks to value a portfolio of agricultural, residential and commercial property worth in excess of £14m. On another occasion I was asked to value a 500-acre nature reserve in Nottinghamshire. This was delivered on time, but I remember that the client was amazed that such a sizeable piece of work could be delivered within two weeks. It was a unique property that was complicated by on-going aftercare obligations, charity involvement and third-party rights.

Whatever the timescale and whatever the property my loyalty lies with maintaining the standards of our profession and that is what’s truly valued by clients.

Inspiring others to consider surveying

I hope to inspire others into the profession – especially those who haven’t ever considered surveying as a career.

Recruiting good quality candidates from diverse backgrounds has become incredibly important for our industry because fewer graduates are entering surveying from the traditional rural universities. I want to show bright youngsters, whatever their circumstances, that surveying is a vibrant and accessible career choice.

Young Surveyor of the Year Awards 2018

The winners of each category will be announced at a ceremony in November 2018 in London: with the ultimate accolade of RICS Matrics Young Surveyor of the Year 2018 awarded to one of the category winners.