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My RICS: Roy Albert

My RICS: Roy Albert

How a calling became a career

Born in the Caribbean (Commonwealth of Dominica), Roy declares himself a ‘small island boy’ who has long held an interest and passion in British architecture. Unfortunately, this beautiful island is prone to hurricanes which can sometimes devastate the properties. Part of the issue stems from construction types and the affordability of building material and the cost of hurricane-resistant buildings. This piqued Roy's interest in properties and construction and decided that he wanted to be part of the solution. This passion wasn’t necessarily Roy’s first choice of career however; in fact Roy wanted to be a pilot! After a visit to the UK and seeing Buckingham Palace, Roy knew he had a strong interest in the built environment and the rest, as they say, is history. 

Fast forward a few years, and Roy landed his first role. To his own admission, Roy’s first job was something of a happy accident; starting his working life in the UK as an Administrator for The Rent Service (now amalgamated the Valuation Office Agency). From this role, Roy took the first opportunity he had by applying for a vacancy to become a Rent Officer. This role involved setting rental levels for housing benefit and making Fair Rent valuations for regulated tenancies. Roy moved through the ranks as his education and learning progressed.

Undertaking an interesting educational journey Roy studied an NVQ Level 4 Valuing qualification, which helped consolidate his Associate RICS membership due to not having a degree. The lack of degree did not hold Roy back, and he took advantage of a wealth of training and learning opportunities that the Valuation Office Agency afforded him. 

Roy was determined to achieve his MRICS status, and so he studied via an Apprenticeship route and begun his degree in 2015. 

Roy is nothing short of determined; two years into his university degree, he started the APC all while juggling family life and full-time work!

Roy Albert
Roy Albert

Roy shares his experience with us: 

What does being MRICS mean to you?

Achieving this status was all but a pipedream at the start when I looked at what the route involved. But now I have achieved this, this means the sense of ultimate satisfaction after a hard-fought journey. I am very proud to have achieved the gold standard of surveying. I also feel very lucky to have had the support of the Valuation Office Agency which has development opportunities at all levels including Surveying Technician, Chartered Surveyor apprenticeships and a graduate programme.

You talk about your love of architecture and your accidental route into surveying; why did you choose RICS?

Being part of the Valuation Office Agency gave me that extra push due the fact that the VOA is one of the largest employers of Chartered Surveyors in the UK. I wanted to be part of that elite group and I wanted to gain that gold standard to consolidate the high demand of consistency, objectivity and transparency that the RICS have set.

What value has your status added to your career?

I have seen an even greater sense of reliability and with this status I am seen as a "go to point" particularly by other candidates aspiring to be qualified. 

What advice would you give to aspiring APC candidates?

You need to plan – there is no way you can wing this. You need to be committed and look at what your priorities are. Figure out your motivations and drivers and look at the bigger picture. What will you gain from this? What do you want from your career? Where do you want to be in two to three years’ time? Lockdown allowed me more time to study which was certainly a benefit! Do make sure that you take regular breaks, and study smarter not harder.

Be part of various learning groups which are readily available such as Matrics. Use peer groups (WhatsApp) which are made up of individuals at the same stage or otherwise. I found this very informative and the opportunity to find out whether I was on the same wavelength. I learned a lot from others including colleagues from the Valuation Office that were at the same stage as me.

I also consolidated my learning through other platforms such as podcasts, YouTube and webinars.

Last but in no way least, practice and practice the case study presentation. My plan was to master the presentation within that 10 minutes and if I mastered that then this would give me a confidence boost for the duration of the interview. I presented my case to colleagues, the mirror, my little boy, the wall and video.

More information about types of RICS membership

Chartered (MRICS)

Chartered Member is available on completion of the chartered qualification. You can enrol at any time in your career but must meet one of the following before applying for assessment:

  • Relevant experience and an RICS-accredited degree
  • 5 years of relevant experience and any bachelor’s degree
  • 10 years of relevant experience operating at an advanced level by seniority, specialisation, or in academia.

Find out about chartered qualification

Associate (AssocRICS)

Associate Member is available on completion of the associate qualification. You can enrol at any time in your career but must meet one of the following before applying for assessment:

  • 1 year of relevant experience and a relevant bachelor’s degree
  • 2 years of relevant experience and a relevant higher/advanced/foundation qualification
  • 4 years of relevant experience (no qualifications required).

Find out about associate qualification