24th June 2010 back to news

Building for the future

One of Scotland’s largest firms of Chartered Surveyors announces personnel changes to its organisational structure following the appointment of Ian Gillies as Senior Partner.

We live in interesting times with challenging circumstances for Graham + Sibbald’s new Senior Partner to take the reins.

Ian has worked with Graham + Sibbald as man and boy, starting in the Stirling office on July 1970 on 6 weeks’ work experience. Almost 40 years later, in April 2010, he became only the company’s fifth Senior Partner. This commitment to the company and its clients is a great asset in uncertain times. But if he is a safe pair of hands, then he has also proven very capable of turning them profitably to new ventures, opening the Falkirk office, establishing the highly successful Petroleum and Roadside Services Division, and helping grow the company’s Licensed Trade work. He contributed to the development of Surveyors Panel Management (SPM), a joint venture panel management company which manages survey and valuations for lenders and intermediaries throughout the UK. He was also heavily involved in establishing Sonas Surveyors, a surveying practice in England and Wales in 2007.

No other Scottish property company offers more disciplines than Graham + Sibbald and this, again, is echoed in Ian’s career. He is a general practice surveyor with expertise covering residential, commercial and specialist valuations.

His experience is valued by clients and other organisations alike. He was elected head of RICS Scotland Residential Faculty in 2000, and he has represented the RICS Scotland for several years on the Government’s Housing Improvement Task Force, helping design and introduce the Home Report, including the Single Survey, in December 2008.

Like Graham + Sibbald, Ian has never been afraid to grasp an opportunity. The key, he believes, is to focus on innovation, not speculation.

With an ambitious new Senior Partner, and a corporate vision ideally suited to our difficult times, Graham +Sibbald is looking forward with confidence.

Ian Gillies comments: “I am pleased to have taken over the role as Senior Partner from Jim Robb, who has made an enormous contribution to Graham + Sibbald over the past six years. Although the firm has performed well over the years, we can not afford to stand still. My focus is to ensure that Graham + Sibbald remains at the cutting edge of its profession.

It is clear that the prospects for the property market will depend on how the UK economy develops and whether there is a considerable increase in the supply of properties for sale. There are a number of factors affecting property values, such as interest rates and the uncertainty of the employment market, the ability of buyers to source funds. Also the end of the stamp duty holiday, and the general election has affected activity in the market with the prospect that VAT will increase over 17.5 per cent in the near future. The experience of the past two years shows how unpredictable the market is at this juncture and that one should always be prepared for the UK property market to surprise.

However, I am hopeful that property prices remain stable in the second half of the year and will show an increase in the new year.”



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