Rural diversification

A wind turbine in the countryside. More turbines are in the distance

Diversification is increasingly an economic necessity for traditional rural estates, invariably thrusting custodians and estate managers into brave new commercial worlds. New skills suddenly become vital: renewables project management, hospitality management, or how to best harness social media for marketing activities. The modern estate manager may need to be as comfortable with the dynamics of the eco-burial market or buffalo mozzarella production, as they are with HMRC changes to beaters’ pay.

This has caused a seismic shift in the needs of rural estates clients. Advice has traditionally been tax-led and defensive in nature, helping estates and landed families maintain their assets in the face of capital taxes. The modern estate’s growing need is sound advice to allow them to maximise the income generating potential of existing assets. This requires a diverse range of skill sets, which are rarely provided by traditional rural advisors. Chiene + Tait embrace these changes and has a dedicated rural practice that is structured to provide a truly comprehensive, commercial service.

Diversification support from a commercially-minded team…

Our Rural Business team blends skills sets gained from corporate finance, infrastructure, business consultancy and entrepreneurial taxes, and embeds them within a team of leading rural tax planning specialists.

Experience dictates that one piece of successful planning cannot be taken in isolation. Tax planning advice given piecemeal does not allow a holistic perspective of how each tax interrelates; SDLT planning may present a tax advantage only to blunder into a VAT liability of greater magnitude. Likewise advice provided purely in the context of tax is likely to be uncommercial and becomes the proverbial ‘tail wagging the dog’. Our team’s integrated service ensures that good planning advice starts and ends with us.

…with a love of rural estates

Finally, we combine ‘soft’ skills (such as managing family relationships) gained in business consultancy with practical hands-on experience of estate management. This is a vital element in ensuring all stakeholders are identified from the outset of any planning exercise, and their motives and needs addressed. Our approach is to identify potential impasses at the earliest stage, rather than once an expensive commercial venture has been commenced. We also seek to address the ‘elephant in the room’ and ensure your diversification plans are not just imaginative, but deliverable and fundable. Our team has a lifetime of experience of providing traditional rural estate services, however we feel you deserve the full range of commercial advice expected within the wider business world.

For a no obligation discussion on how to take a business finance approach to your land, contact Shona Fraser at

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