Surveyors provide professional advice on a range of construction-related matters. They could be ensuring that new-build properties are built to regulations and specifications; advising on maintenance and repair of existing structures or assessing damage for legal and insurance purposes. Many surveyors specialise in one area as the role carries many responsibilities.

Average salary*

£20000 – £70000+

Typical hours per week


How to become a surveyor

There are several routes to becoming a surveyor. You can gain the qualifications you need by completing a university course, a graduate training scheme or an apprenticeship. You should explore the options to find out which is the right one for you.

You may need a Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) card to work on a construction site.

University/graduate training scheme

You could study for a degree or professional qualification approved by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). Relevant subjects include surveying, construction, civil or building engineering.

If you have an existing degree in another subject, you may be able to take an accredited postgraduate qualification in surveying.

For this you’ll need:

  • 2 – 3 A levels or equivalent (undergraduate course)
  • A first degree in any subject (postgraduate course).

If you already have a relevant foundation degree or higher national diploma and are working in a relevant field (i.e. as a surveying technician), your employer may help you do further qualifications to become a fully qualified surveyor.

You could also do a graduate trainee scheme with a construction company and earn a postgraduate qualification, or do a distance learning course with the University College of Estate Management.

> Equivalent entry requirements explained

> Find a university course

> Funding advice


An apprenticeship with a surveying company is a good way into the industry.

Apprenticeships are open to anyone over the age of 16. As an apprentice, you will be fully employed by your company and expected to work a minimum of 30 hours a week. Your time will be split between on-the-job experience and a college or training provider.

You could start your career as a surveying technician or a geospatial survey technician.

You’ll need:

  • 4 – 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C)
  • 2 – 3 A levels (or equivalent).

Find an apprenticeship near you

Work experience

Work experience is essential to gaining employment within the construction industry. You could gain this at school, or by working weekends and holidays with a company or relative who works as a surveyor. Potential employers will always be pleased to see work experience listed on your CV.


Additional skills which may benefit anyone looking to become a surveyor include:

  • Knowledge of building and construction
  • Be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • Customer service skills
  • Able to use your initiative
  • Analytical thinking skills
  • Patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • Thinking and reasoning skills

What does a surveyor do?

As a surveyor you will be responsible for inspecting and checking building to identify any possible structural damage or loss of integrity, and then making recommendations for the repair work needed.

The job role of a surveyor involves the following duties:

  • Surveying properties to identify structural damage and make recommendations for repairs
  • Inspecting buildings for insurance purposes and advising on relevant legal requirements
  • Advising on energy efficiency and environmental impact
  • Working on the conservation of historic structures
  • Checking properties meet building regulations, accessibility, and fire and health and safety standards
  • Ensuring projects are completed to schedule
  • Managing budgets
  • Preparing designs from technical specifications
  • Advising clients on planning applications and boundary disputes
  • Dealing with improvement or conservation grants
  • Working in an office, on-site, or at a client’s property.

How much could you earn as a surveyor?

The expected salary for a surveyor varies as you become more experienced.

  • Newly trained surveyors can earn in the region of £20,000 – £25,000
  • Trained with experience surveyors can earn in the region of £25,000 – £30,000
  • Senior or chartered surveyors can earn in the region of £30,000 – £45,000.*

Salaries typically range depending on location and level of responsibility. Salaries and career options improve with chartered status.

* Salaries have been collected from multiple industry sources

Find an apprenticeship/job


Apprenticeships in England

Apprenticeships in Scotland

Apprenticeships in Wales


Check out the latest surveyor vacancies: 

As these are external websites, the number of vacancies related to your preferred role may vary. New opportunities will be posted as they come up.

Career path and progression

Senior building surveyors could move into project management, or train for a related role, such as land/geomatic surveying or building control.

You could set up a private practice or work as a self-employed consultant and set your own salary.