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The joys of juggling valuation and motherhood

Time is precious — even more so when you’re a mother-of-three, a business owner, farmer’s wife, and the full-time manager of QV’s talented team of property valuers in the Otago and Southland region.

The fact that super mum and registered valuer Kylie Helman manages to accomplish all this and more is as remarkable as, well, The Remarkables are this time of year. It’s a good thing, then, that she seems to have struck the right balance between career and kids, office and field work, domestic travel and time at home on the farm…

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Tell us a bit about yourself… who are you and what do you do?

I’m Kylie, a 35-year-old born-and-bred Southlander, mum of three, business owner, farmer’s wife, registered valuer, and, most recently, the Otago and Southland manager for QV. We live on a dairy farm, approximately an hour North West of Invercargill, one-hour South of Te Anau, and just under two hours from Queenstown.

What exactly does your job entail?

As with all valuers, no two days are the same. As well as market valuations for residential and lifestyle properties, I’m involved with revaluations, roll maintenance and daily queries from the eight councils in the lower South Island region.

I also get to catch up with our awesome team, who are based in our offices in Dunedin, Invercargill and Alexandra, as well as our valuers who work remotely in other areas such as Queenstown — not a bad spot to be located!

What’s your favourite part of your role?

Being outside on a nice day. Flexibility in our daily/weekly schedules. Seeing some amazing homes in locations many people never get the opportunity to explore. Just to name a few of the perks.

You’ve been working at QV for more than a decade. To what do you credit your longevity?

I was lucky enough to secure a scholarship from QV in my final year of study at Lincoln, which led to a graduate position in the Invercargill office. I’ve been based here for most of the past 15 years in a variety of capacities — including full-time, part-time, and even as a self-employed contractor.

The flexible working environment and the understanding and acceptance of part-time roles when you have a young family has definitely been a catalyst in making it possible for me to continue my career whilst also living fairly remotely and raising three small humans.


How do you manage to juggle the responsibilities of parenthood with the responsibilities of your role?

As with valuing properties, no two days are the same when it comes to life and what it can throw at you. It takes a good degree of organisation, lists, calendars — but most importantly not stressing if something doesn’t go to plan. To date, we haven’t forgotten to pick up a child from a sports practice… yet.

At QV, we’re big proponents of work-life balance… what do you like to do in your time off?

Given where we live, we’re pretty spoilt for choice. We do love to travel and have taken the opportunity to see some cool places around Aotearoa over the past couple of years while the tourists have been kept at bay. My parents live in Te Anau and we also spend a lot of time in Fiordland.

But to be honest, by the time I’ve done being ‘netball mom’, ‘rugby mom’, ‘hockey mom’, ‘pony mom’, and ‘motorcross mom’… it’s nice just to be ‘relax with a nice wine and read a book uninterrupted mom’.

Last but certainly not least, what advice would you offer young people looking to get into the biz? Is property valuation a good career choice?

If you’re looking for a career where you can have flexibility, varied workloads, a good mixture of time in the office and in the field, and the opportunity to travel the region or in some cases the country, then valuation is the perfect fit.