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Hot Topic Highlight - Business Planning

Updated: May 31, 2019



Building a better you


Property Elite’s sole aim is to build better property professionals - supporting your career every step of the way, whether you are an AssocRICS or RICS APC candidate or a MRICS or FRICS Chartered Surveyor simply seeking engaging CPD.


We provide a wide range of training and support, so why not find out more on our website about how we might be able to support you? We work with candidates across all RICS APC and AssocRICS pathways, routes to assessment and geographic regions.


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What is today's blog about?


In this blog article, we will take a top-level look at what you need to do for your RICS APC, covering the mandatory competency; business planning, as well as looking at RICS requirements and legislation.


You can also listen to our CPD podcast on Anchor for more free AssocRICS and RICS APC training and support.


Why is this relevant?


This is a common theme of questioning within the RICS APC, particularly in relation to mandatory competence; conduct rules, ethics and professional practice. It’s also important to understand the business in which you work, plus you may want to work for yourself in the future.


What do I need to do?


Firstly, you need to establish whether there is market demand for your service. Detailed market research will reveal whether there is a gap in the market or whether you could create a new market. Looking at the competition is important to work out things you like, things you don’t and how you could do things better.


Ask yourself; what problem are you solving and why does your solution makes your business unique?


You need to decide how to efficiently structure your business depending on your objectives and ownership structure. Common structures include being a sole trader, limited liability partnership (LLP) or limited company. Also, how will your fund your venture and will you require external sources of finance, e.g. bank or venture capital?


This will form the basis of your business plan. You will also need to think about branding, marketing and forecasting cash flows.


What are the RICS requirements?


Being a RICS regulated firm demonstrates to clients that you are at the top of your game; ethical, trustworthy and transparent. It is the gold standard within the property industry and most clients will expect that their advisors are regulated firms. To benefit from being regulated, you would need to submit a firm details form to the RICS. There is no cost to doing so.


After you become regulated, you must comply with the RICS Rules of Conduct for Firms. These include a number of mandatory requirements such as:

  • Having adequate Professional Indemnity Insurance (PII)

  • Complying with regulations for holding clients’ money

  • Having a written Complaints Handling Procedure 

  • Ensuring that your staff receive adequate training to enable them to act competently

What legislation is relevant?


You also need to consider various statutory requirements:

  • Business Names Act 1985

  • Companies Act 1985

  • GDPR 

  • 2017 Money Laundering Regulations

  • Consumer Credit Act 1974 (for certain activities)

  • Financial Services and Marketing Act 2000 (for certain activities)

If you intend to employ staff, then you will also need to consider relevant employment legislation. 


Setting up a new business can be a minefield of red tape with an endless ‘to do list’ to get you to day 1 of trading. However, it is also a highly rewarding process which helps you to turn your passion and dream into a solid reality.


Having an appreciation of the process is essential for the APC, but it will also stand you in good stead to become a better property professional in the future.


How can we help?

  • Head to our blog archive to access even more free CPD and AssocRICS and RICS APC training and support.

  • Download your free AssocRICS and RICS APC resources, including e-books and revision quizzes.

  • Find out more about our bespoke AssocRICS and RICS APC training and support, before booking your free 15 minute consultation and signing up for your services online.

Not sure about signing up? Make sure you read what our recent successful candidates have to say in our Testimonials.


Stay tuned for our next blog post to help build a better you


N.b. Nothing in this article constitutes legal or financial advice.