The Life of a Building Surveyor – Part 1

Posted by on Apr 20, 2018 in Building Surveying

The Life of a Building Surveyor – Part 1

If I asked you which profession allows you to spend a high percentage of your working life outdoors and gives you the opportunity to see the far corners of the country, how long would it take you to suggest building surveying? There is a common misconception that building surveyors spend their lives scrambling around roofs or crawling through sub-floors and then writing about their findings in the office – but like all misconceptions, this is incorrect.

GLM were appointed to carry out a series of access audits to a large portfolio of properties. An access audit looks at how a building user with any form of disability, whether that be a member of staff or a visitor, can approach, access and use a building. Our findings are then collated and we make any appropriate recommendations to improve the facilities. The reason for engaging a building surveyor to undertake an access audit is because in UK law employers must make reasonable adjustments to their premises to accommodate disabled employees and visitors.

The portfolio of properties we were asked to survey stretched from the barren landscape of the far north to the hustle and bustle of the central belt. I instantly volunteered for the farthest away properties. Since moving to Edinburgh from my native Newcastle upon Tyne I had wanted to visit the Isle of Skye and Isle of Lewis. This was the perfect opportunity to visit and tick off a chunk of the NC500 whilst I’m at it.

My first tour out of the office took me to Kinlochleven, Mallaig and Portree. I was incredibly lucky with the weather and even managed to squeeze in a hike up Ben Tianavaig in between surveys – hardly crawling through a sub-floor is it? I was told the far north would be brutal with sweeping winds and poor visibility but I was met with clear skies and gentle breeze (although I must admit, it was cold).

My second trip out took me even further. Kinlochbervie, Lochinver, Ullapool and Stornoway. I couldn’t get lucky with the weather again could I? Again, I was met with clear blue skies in between towns and surveys. From the white beaches of Harris to the rough and rugged moors of Kinlochbervie. This hardly felt like work at all.

If you want a job where you get to explore the country and spend time outdoors, you don’t have to be a mountaineer, explorer or a national park ranger. Why not be a building surveyor?

The variety of work undertaken by a building surveyor is hard to beat within the construction industry. From conservation work in Carlisle to access audits in Aberdeen. GLM are perfectly suited to assist with all of your property needs.

Neil Dickson

Building Surveyor

Check back mid-May for the next installation.