Concise Rural Taxation 2017/18 Edition

Due from the printer this week.  130 pages on Income, Capital Gains, Inheritance, VAT, Trusts etc etc including latest changes as they affect farming and the rural economy.  For more details Continue reading “Concise Rural Taxation 2017/18 Edition”

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Concise Rural Taxation 2017/17 Now Available

Concise Rural Taxation (formerly Taxation for Students of Rural Land Management) is now an annual publication.  This year’s edition is now available. Continue reading “Concise Rural Taxation 2017/17 Now Available”

Measure for Measure

Philip Meade has published a post on his Dispute Resolution blog which serves as an excellent reminder of some of the good practice surveying basics: points which are just as useful to a trainee or newly-qualified surveyor as they are to an experienced arbitrator.  I’m delighted to reproduce it below:

Despite our professional roots in land surveying it is not uncommon as an arbitrator to come across valuation disputes in which the precise location and extent of the original problem is far from c…

Source: Measure for Measure

How to pass the Agriculture Competency of the RICS Rural APC

All candidates for the RICS (Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors) Rural Assessment of Professional Competency (APC) must satisfy the examiners that they have a sound agricultural knowledge.  Three levels are specified and all candidates must achieve at least Level Two while some will opt for the higher Level Three.

What do we know about these requirements?  The RICS guide tells us that at Level Two we must demonstrate application of the principles and systems of practical farming methods.  This might involve questions on crop rotations, cultivations, general husbandry and marketing.  Animal welfare and record keeping can also be questioned, as well as the wide body of regulations which affect farming in one way or another.  Candidates are expected to know how to prepare detailed farm finance plans and budgets.

At the higher Level Three candidates are expected to have provided professional farm management advice (the provision of reasoned advice to stakeholders on the management and practical application of appropriate methods and requirements of farming, according to the guide).

Alongside all this, you are also expected to know about the utilization and cost of farm buildings.

Quite a tall order, but nevertheless essential knowledge for a rural surveyor who wishes to work for farmers and landowners while maintaining credibility with the client.

This is a professional examination and there is no substitute for direct experience and, just as important, intelligent engagement with the farming industry.  Regular reading of the trade press can help to imbue current market information and trends.

But even the best informed of candidates can struggle under examination conditions.  With a view to this we have developed a new web class with RICS Training, an Agriculture Competency Masterclass which will run on Friday 2 October at 12.00 for 90 minutes.  It won’t take you from zero to hero in that time, but it will help you to prepare soundly for the professional interview.  If any participants would like me to email me a copy of their agriculture submission at Levels 1, 2 and 3 if available I will happily consider them for anonymous inclusion in the class so you will get the benefit of direct feedback while adding to the value of the class for all participants.

The class costs no more than £30, less if you or your firm are a subscriber and details and bookings can be arranged here: RICS Agricultural Competency Masterclass

Strategy and the land manager

These slides provide an update on the survey I have been undertaking for my RAU 100 Club/RICS (Royal Agricultural University/Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors) Fellowship on the topic of strategy in rural estate management. The 151 respondents to date have been involved in the management of at least 1.973 million acres in the last year, and potentially up to 4 million acres. It’s therefore probably reasonable to claim a mid figure of 3 million acres, or at least 1 million hectares. Analysis continues but there are already some very interesting results.

Estate Management Strategy: a survey

Please can I invite readers to complete a short survey for me, particularly if you are involved in land or estate management on any scale.

There are seven questions, and it should take no more than a few minutes to complete.  This link will take you to the survey:

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/RKDDXRZ

The results of the survey will be published in my report for the RICS/RAU 100 Club Fellowship (Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors/Royal Agricultural University).  They should be useful to estate managers in extending our understanding of the role of strategic planning on the rural estate, and helpful to students and course designers.

If you would like to receive a summary of the results there is an option to provide your contact details but other than this individual responses will be confidential.

Thank you in advance for your assistance and input.  The preliminary results will be available at the National Rural Conference at the RAU on Thursday 18 June.  Booking details here:

http://www.rics.org/uk/training-events/conferences-seminars/rics-rural-conference/cirencester/

Business tools for the rural estate: long and medium term planning

What business tools or techniques do we use on rural estates?  Does it all boil down to annual budgeting, assessing performance against projections, capital project planning, the occasional tax review?  Or is there more to it than that?  Strategic environmental analysis perhaps?  Simple SWOT analyses?  Sophisticated investment appraisal using DCF?  Stakeholder analysis?  Cost benefit analysis?  Multi-criteria decision analysis?

Over the next few months I will be researching this question for the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors/Royal Agricultural University 100 Club Fellowship.  Please help me by nominating your preferred strategic management tools for the rural estate.  A survey will also be launched soon.  The results are due to be presented at this year’s RICS Rural Conference, Land – delivering on all fronts on 18 June 2015.

So  please do help us to get off to a good start by sharing your experience of planning, marketing and decision-making techniques and tools on the rural estate through the comments box below – or if you would rather do so privately please use the ‘contact’ tab to send me a message.  I look forward to hearing from you.