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08 SURVEYING 2015 6


Tell us about your pathway into surveying.

Sahar Rezazadeh Surveyor Central London Retail CBRE

Initially I read Political Science as an undergraduate so the jump to property was perceived to be an outlandish one. However, my political background has consistently proven to be a good foundation for my career. I then undertook an MSc in Real Estate Management which I opted for as it was an RICS accredited degree. I was confident that it would equip me with the qualifying skills and knowledge to succeed in the industry. I then embarked on a host of internship opportunities with local real estate firms as well as the big players including Savills, Colliers International, GVA and CBRE – who I now work for.

Why did you choose your specialism? Retail and Leisure Agency is a varied line of service as I get the opportunity to work with a broad range of landlords as well as a vast array of occupiers, from local independents to the high end international luxury brands. Correspondence with all of these parties can be a challenge as we approach each very differently in tone and offering. I thrive on this challenge. I also always enjoy learning about upcoming brands and operators and love playing my part in nurturing young, new enterprises.

What do you like most about surveying? Hitting the road. In my role, I rarely get the opportunity to do this as a lot of the properties we deal with are within walking distance in the City Centre. This could be why I enjoy doing so when the opportunity arises. It is definitely nice to have days out of the office, onsite and exploring a new location.

What has been your experience of the training process? The structured training programme ensures you acquire the right experience ahead of the assessment. It is a stringent process. However, it is predominantly hands on and assesses day-to-day working activity in your chosen competencies with goals to meet throughout, so you are always improving yourself.

What advice would you give to people starting out in the surveying industry? There’s no such thing as a stupid question. If in doubt ask and ask again. The surveying profession is regulated by codes and best practice guides which are excellent. However, the broad variety of instructions we receive and the nature of the spaces we may deal with means that there will always be something out of the ordinary. Always share your concerns with your seniors and other colleagues, and they will be supportive.

Would you recommend a career in surveying? Absolutely. Surveying is an exciting mix of commercial activity and social interaction. It is perfect for young people who are looking for a more rounded career. For example, I enjoy working with numbers, however I could not sit in the office writing reports, analysing spread sheets and figures day in, day out. During my experience in valuation, I had the best of both worlds. I was delivering clients valuation figures and reports one day and on another day I was out inspecting a football ground.


Benefits of RICS As the leading property professional body setting and enforcing standards, RICS qualifications provide unparalleled market confidence. There is global demand for our professional credentials underpinned by ethical principles and independent regulation. Joining RICS not only provides you with a prestigious professional qualification but it is also recognised throughout the world across the land, real estate, construction and infrastructure sectors - making it a global passport to career opportunities. And when you become chartered, your earning potential substantially increases – in 2014/15 the average annual salary of an RICS professional was £54k.

Status - prestigious qualification

Recognition - global passport

The first step to becoming chartered Gaining an RICS accredited degree is the most accepted way of becoming a chartered surveyor. However, many people start off with an associated qualification, such as a geography degree, and then undertake an RICS conversion degree.

Achieve RICS status and become part of the leading professional body for land, real estate, construction and infrastructure.

What happens after you graduate? After completing an RICS accredited degree or diploma you’ll then need two or three years’ work experience before taking your RICS professional assessment interview – known as the Assessment of Professional Competence (APC). The APC is to ensure you are competent to practise as a chartered surveyor.

Market advantage - increased earning potential

Knowledge - access to RICS resources

Network - with fellow professionals

Top five benefits of RICS ∑ status

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Surveying 2016 — careers guide  

Our annual careers guide aimed at those interested in learning more about careers in land, property and construction.

Surveying 2016 — careers guide  

Our annual careers guide aimed at those interested in learning more about careers in land, property and construction.

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