Graduate Surveyor / Chartered Surveyor / Development Viability Officer

Employer
Tower Hamlets
Location
London
Salary
£34,644 - £47,736
Closing date
19 Feb 2023
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Graduate Surveyor / Chartered Surveyor / Development Viability Officer

Salary & Benefits: We are offering a salary between £34,644 - £47,736 (experience dependant – reviewed bi-annually and upon qualification) which is one of, if not the highest paying graduate/recently qualified offerings both from the private and public sector currently. Our additional benefits are exemplary and unrivalled – see remuneration pack within the role on our website for full details.

Start Date: 20th March 2023 (alternative commencement dates will be considered for graduates completing academic studies and/or lengthy notice periods for applicants currently employed)

Structured Training Offer: Comprehensive support in commencing/completing the RICS Assessment of Professional Competence (APC – Planning & Development Pathway) to achieve chartered status (if not already qualified) including rotation across the wider planning/property department. A dedicated supervisor and councillor will be appointed to you for regular support. See remuneration pack within the role on our website for full details.

Contract: Permanent with growth potential in post.

Eligibility: Applicants must be eligible to undertake the APC and become a member of the RICS by way of academia (undergraduate/post graduate RICS accredited degree/masters – all classifications considered) or through the experience route. MRICS status for more experienced applicants who qualified via the Valuation, Commercial Real Estate or Planning & Development pathways.

Application Closing Date: 19th February 2023

Location: London (Whitechapel) and remote working

Background

The housing crisis is an ongoing issue within the UK and more specifically within Greater London. The need to accommodate thousands of individuals and families on housing waiting lists across the capital continues to grow rapidly creating an urgent need in seeking to maximise the affordable housing contributions made by developers as part of new development schemes.

To meet this urgent need requires a consistent delivery of both private and affordable housing across the whole of the London. It is therefore critical that a well-planned and coordinated policy base is maintained, and that this is implemented consistently and robustly. To this end, Development Viability plays an integral part within the planning process and the delivery of affordable housing/developer contributions.

The Team - Tower Hamlets Viability (THV)

To ensure Tower Hamlets is best placed to address matters relating to development viability, the council has created a dedicated team to assess development appraisals and provide advice to planning officers and politicians.

THV is an internal council service & a fee earning commercial service providing specialist development viability advice to both the planning department at LBTH as well as other planning authorities (primarily within London). The team holds professional expertise in development viability/valuations and relevant RICS accreditation (qualified chartered status) with a 100% success rate at initial assessment between all staff. Experience held within the team is vast with private and public sector backgrounds.

Viability Officers/Surveyors are involved in several areas of work including (not limited to):

  • Review & negotiate financial viability assessments/development appraisals of mixed-use development schemes from small to very large/strategic development (2000+ units)
  • Area wide development viability advice (Local Plan/CIL Charging Schedule) Site inspections where required.
  • Review mechanisms (Securing effective reviews through s.106 agreements and undertaking assessments at triggers)
  • Community Led Housing/Self Build Projects – reviewing viability assessments and assessing affordability.
  • CIL Payment in Kind – land valuations/approach advice.

Your responsibilities

You will play an active role in contributing to the overarching aims of the team and affordable housing ambitions more widely, both in Tower Hamlets and across London. Your everyday responsibilities will comprise (not limited to) the following:

  • Gaining a strong, in-depth knowledge of Tower Hamlets and London property/development markets in a planning context and staying up to date with changes to legislation and practice as part of an industry-leading borough.
  • Supporting and producing written reports of financial viability assessments (FVAs), supported by viability appraisals prepared using Argus Developer software. This also includes undertaking follow-up assessments triggered by review mechanisms.
  • Undertake site inspections as necessary.
  • Providing valuation/viability advice to planning officers to assist with decision making and with negotiating maximum amounts of affordable housing with applicants.
  • Forge strong relationships with public sector clients such as planning authorities/councils mainly across London where THV are commissioned to undertake instructions on their behalf.
  • Preparing briefing notes for politicians and (for grades I&J) appearing at Development Committee meetings where relevant to provide viability-specific advice and respond to queries.
  • Assisting in the preparation of documents for planning appeals and inquiries.
  • Assisting with procurement and management of Quantity Surveyors feeding into viability assessments undertaken by THV and other Surveyors/Firms for strategic projects such as Local Plan evidence bases, Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) rate setting, and various Supplementary Planning Documents (SPDs).
  • Support and provide advice to legal/planning colleagues with respects to securing affordable housing provisions/clauses as part of any legal agreement.
  • Support and provide Ad-Hoc viability/valuation advice relating to any matter within the council.

Is this role for me?

This is a career grade position in a dynamic team, and therefore ideal for candidates at the very beginning of their career or for those with existing experience able to quickly take responsibility for their own projects and casework. In any case, working for a busy borough such as Tower Hamlets allows for exposure to complex and interesting projects throughout the year and across the capital.

The post accommodates a wide range of potential candidates but would be suited for:

  • Recent graduate or in the final year at university (undergraduate or post-graduate)
  • Currently a graduate surveyor undertaking the RICS APC elsewhere and looking for a change
  • Experienced/qualified professional with knowledge/experience of valuations/viability.

If you would like to discuss eligibility, please contact us on the details below.

The Package/Benefits

The council is determined to employ and more importantly retain valued members of the team. Given that we offer so much by way of additional benefits we have set out the full and extensive list within the remuneration pack (attached/available on our website apart of the role) that is unmatched in the industry. From excellent pay scales, training and support we’ve not missed anything out. Our aim is to have staff feel confident in their roles and recognised for their continuous efforts.

Apply

This is a genuinely fantastic opportunity with outstanding benefits so submit an application today via the council’s recruitment portal (Alvius).

We strongly advise you to read “Advice for Applicants 2023” carefully before submitting an application. This can be found on our website apart of the role and will be the best form of guidance when creating an application.

Contact Details

Should you have any queries regarding the post of would like to discuss the role in further detail please contact Jack Leafe (jack.leafe@towerhamlets.gov.uk) or call 020 7364 4565.

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