Meet Director Gary Naftel
Company director and chartered building surveyor Gary tells his story…
Where Did It All Begin?
My first foray into the building industry was as an apprentice carpenter with local building contractor CA Duquemin. I practically grew up on building sites and spent nearly 10 years working by day and studying at night. There was something very satisfying about having the ability of actually creating something from nothing, but I soon realised that once you have created one window or staircase you can create them all so I wanted more and went to Westminster University in London to obtain my degree as a Building Surveyor.
Those years spent working as a carpenter did in fact give me an advantage in my studies as I had seen practical examples of many building issues in real life. It also gave me invaluable first hand experience working alongside other trades and the culture of building sites; I had seen it all, long before I needed to run my first project as a building surveyor and there aren’t a lot of tricks (or builders waffle) that gets past me.
Returning Home To Guernsey
Once I had my degree, I returned to the island and started working for a local architect and surveying company. In 2002 I accepted a job with the States Of Guernsey in their Property Department where I gathered experience on larger government scale projects. I enjoyed surveying the problems at Vale Mill, Victoria Tower, Castle Cornet and helping the Housing Department deliver their ambitious Refurbishment Programme. The variety and scale of these projects was very enjoyable and I gained many friends in the Civil Service whilst getting a close up look at the government wheels in motion. During the last few years in government employment, I received chartered status and with that qualification, and the depth of knowledge and experience I had now gathered, I felt ready to start my own business in 2009, in first instance with a partner, and since 2013 as Naftel Associates.
A Typical Day In Gary’s Shoes
My job is extremely varied. On a typical day I will complete a Mortgage Valuation Report, design an extension, inspect a property for defect or quality control and meet clients, builders or the planning department officers regarding a specific project. All of our customers are different, they have different expectations, different aspirations, different lifestyles and above all, individual requirements. A customer approaching us deserves the best professional service we can offer and we really try to deliver.
Our Best Work
Where we really shine is project management; There are so many moving parts in the building stage and our clients are mostly busy professionals who can’t spare the time to oversee this stage themselves.
Outside Of Naftel Associates
I like to spend my spare time on the water and if the weather or tides aren’t right I can be found on the golf course.