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I spoke with the VP of the surveying association and he roughed the stats at -20 +3. We lose 20 surveyors a year and 3 pass the exam.

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Perfect. Only need a few more years and there won't be a glut of PLS's. 

Supply vs Demand sets prices. Right now the price is generally too low, so supply goes down.


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Just A. Surveyor
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What's this, nearly every post from someone in your locale almost brags about the good prices you guys out there are able to command and then I read your comment and I begin to wonder if all those others who will go unnamed are BS'ing everyone.

So where is the truth? Are prices depressed because of an over supply of surveyors, as is my situation, or are you living a charmed life? 

Joined: 9 years ago

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Whoa there implying people might be BS-ers. Maybe David was talking about surveying in general but am sure he will do just fine responding to that.

The situation can vary a lot from one side of the state or region to the other, and I can't speak for every surveyor in the PNW, but every firm I talk to has had some good years of late. And for several years running I keep getting calls asking if I knew of any surveyors, folks could not fill positions; LS to crews to office. It has cooled a bit an winter cometh. It is in pockets, but the development boom is still a going bonkers, but that is also cooling a bit. In some areas the cost of living is higher, and prices for anything (including surveys) can be high. Are the good times around here sustainable indefinitely and will we end up with a glut of surveyors that could theoretically see a drop or static trend in prices? Or would a flattening of prices be more to with a general slowdown (if/when that happens)? Without a lot of empirical data we might all simply be speculating.

I hear folks sat that surveyors need to charge more. I agree, but how does that work? It is not as if there is a national guild that could work out some kind of across the board price fixing. Not trying to throw cold water on the idea, not alt all... just honestly wondering how that goal gets realized. How do we demand higher prices. Yes there is the tasks that require a license as a hammer, apart from that how would a concerted effort to force the hand of clients? What is stop just one firm of many from keeping the prices low and undermining all of the good intentions. A large multi-discipline firm could probably afford to do some of the small cap jobs at a tighter margin to establish themselves as a "go to" for all projects large and small. Like a big box store outside town leaving all of the small shops downtown struggling.

I don't profess to have any of the answers except demonstrating the value of good surveys to customers, providing reliable and professional services, good customer service, etc. Just like any other profession.


holy cow
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That's when they change the demand.  Start allowing practices that we, today, find abhorrent.

Just A. Surveyor
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Wonderful news. Hopefully you guys are talking to one another and taking the proper steps to raise all your fee's, rates, salaries, and standard of living.

I'm envious and wish for it to make its way here.