Studying to Become a Chartered Surveyor

Tom Aslett studying for his Real Estate Masters

An interview with Tom Aslett, Residential Development Senior Consultant who has recently been accepted to study for a Masters Degree in Real Estate with the ambition of completing his APC and becoming a RICS approved chartered surveyor.

Tom joined Deverell Smith almost three years’ ago. He came from a background of professional acting having studied at drama school before embarking on a career in television and theatre. When he joined Deverell Smith, Tom had no prior recruitment or property experience.

We ask him about his career so far at Deverell Smith and his decision to qualify as Chartered Surveyor.

How have you found your time at Deverell Smith and the transition from actor to recruiter?
I joined Deverell Smith without any experience in recruitment or the property industry. Working in an office was new to me as previously I had spent my career in television and theatre, which although was an amazing experience was never consistent or reliable as a long term career. On my first day I have to admit the prospect of working in an entirely new industry and job was daunting, but the job is about working and engaging with people, so I could draw upon my skills in acting for communication skills, which is really important to do the job well. My team was really inviting and friendly and we were growing fast so I wasn’t the new face for long. When I started there were only four of us, now we are twelve and still growing.

What do you like about the property industry?
I soon realised it wasn’t just the recruitment side of the job that I enjoyed, I had a genuine interest in the property industry. The built environment is always changing and always pushing boundaries in design, development and innovation. In London, there are old and new buildings and the difficulty is merging them together so that they are not out of place next to each other, the architecture’s got to be sympathetic yet progressive to fit our modern needs. Every part of London represents a diverse style of building, reflecting the past, present and future as every community has different histories and current needs. Working with the developers for London’s new schemes and placing the people who design, plan and deliver these buildings makes you so aware of the changing face of our cities and the way it impacts everything.

What has triggered you to take up a Masters?
I love being part of the this fascinating industry and I know a lot about what’s going on in the market but I want to know more, so I signed up for this MSc in Real Estate which gives an overview of the real estate environment and built environment.

The module in planning and development teaches you to submit planning applications and the rules and regulations around that. The built environment is how to add value to an existing building. A legal module helps with what you can and can’t do in particular situations. This knowledge will allow me to talk to clients and candidates with wider knowledge and appreciation for what they do.

How will you combine work and studies?
Deverell Smith have been really supportive, the plan is to work four days in the office and one day out of the office studying for two years. I am lucky that I’ve been allowed to do that with a supportive team around me. it is reassuring.

My ambition is to become a fully qualified member of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors.