Successful surveying depends on having a clear purpose for the survey. It is not just about collecting the right kind of evidence, but also being able to focus it to meet the requirements of the instruction. An understanding of the history of buildings, building technology and the local environment is important, as is knowledge of the causes of and remedial actions for building defects. Of paramount importance is an ability to deal with people, handle client expectations and maintain budgets.
Selecting appropriate materials and competent contractors, specification writing and an ability to manage projects are all key skills for the building surveyor. It is crucial that a surveyor organises their tasks and can view key aspects of the subject property.
The maintenance of the surveyor’s role within current statutory instruction is also important. While these statutes are covered in greater detail in other isurv sections, the practising surveyor must comply with their professional obligations in statutes such as:
- Control of Asbestos 2012;
- The Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2017; and
- Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015.
Clients need to know the technical details of the property and site and also where they may be taking on statutory obligations, such as compliance with the Equality Act 2010 and Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990.
Of paramount importance is a thorough knowledge of the client’s intentions. The Bribery Act 2010 introduces concepts like bribery by association (Section 7). This is an offence committed by a surveyor who knows that actions described by the act as being bribery have occurred but fails to act upon that knowledge.