Rural Surveyor/Land Agent/Estate Agent/Agricultural Consultant/Land Management/Rural Business Management
Although often urban estate agencies do not require specific qualifications, for rural estate agents, many candidates enter the profession with a degree accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). Relevant subjects include:
· Rural estate and land management
· Land economy
· Rural business management
Studying an accredited course shortens the length of time you have to spend in professional training, which lasts at least one year. Some courses include a placement year, which may be with an employer approved by RICS.
Some HND and foundation degrees in land and property studies are acceptable for Associate/RICS status, but they will usually have to be topped-up to degree level in a relevant subject to earn chartered status.
Accredited postgraduate conversion courses are offered for those who did not complete an accredited first degree. Distance learning part-time courses are also available for those who may want to study while working.
RICS has more information about becoming an estate agent.
- knowledge of the value of land and agricultural business
- the ability to get on with people at all levels
- negotiation and selling skills
- organisational and administration skills
- knowledge of agriculture
- maths skills
- Negotiating between sellers and buyers
- Visiting clients
- Creating maps using geographical information systems (GIS), satellite imaging and precision measuring instruments.
- Assisting with valuations for clients, covering property, machinery, crops and livestock. Valuations are usually done for sale, insurance, taxation or compensation purposes
- Arranging viewings and follow-up
- Generating sales leads
Working Hours, Patterns and Environment
Office work and a lot of your time will be spent visiting clients on farms or estates, which could mean early starts and late finishes.
Once you have passed your APC your choice of career path tends to narrow with specialisation. With experience and a good sales record in estate agency, you could be promoted from sales negotiator to senior negotiator and then branch manager.
Larger chains of estate agents may offer more opportunities for promotion than smaller companies.
In general smaller firms generally offer a broader mix of experience without the need to specialise but fewer opportunities to develop highly-specialised knowledge and expertise.