Posted on 21st January 2021

Should you have your property surveyed?

property survey

Having a property is a big commitment. You need to be on top of countless things to make sure that your property is well maintained, and you don’t end up with unnecessary headaches. One common question about taking care of a property is whether or not to get the land surveyed. The following will explore the situations where getting your property surveyed is a good idea.

Of course, every property is different and has its own safety, legal, and maintenance requirements. To fully understand what surveying would mean for your particular property, reach out to a local surveyor in your area. There might be things that apply to your climate or location not mentioned in this article.


Legal Requirements

You may be legally required to have a survey performed before building on location in some situations. This could be because the area has been known to have archaeological or geological artifacts nearby. This could be a necessary step in getting a permit to build for safety reasons. Experts at recommend that, first and foremost, look up the laws in your county. If you are required by law to seek out a survey, you don’t really have a choice if you want to do anything with the land.


Mortgage Requirements

Similar to the legal requirements mentioned above, many mortgage companies require a property survey to ensure that the land is worth the money they’re offering to loan you. In some cases, this isn’t required by law but recommended. Sometimes mortgage companies are happy to work with title insurance alone. If you’re working with a mortgage provider, speak to them in order to figure out whether or not this is required for you to be granted the loan.


Title And History Information

Most property surveyors will include in their services some research on the property before they even look at the land. This means researching the deed’s history and doing a title search. A title search will find out if there are any discrepancies when it comes to who legally owns the land. This information might be sought out for personal interest reasons or because you’ve heard rumors about the possibility of future complications.


Settle Right-Of-Way And Easements

Property surveys can also help out in situations where there are disagreements about how shared yards, driveways, streets, and alleys work. Sometimes we find the perfect piece of land, but there are issues about who has the right of way to something like a road between two properties.


Clear Up Boundary Lines

In some situations, particularly in locations where the majority of the land is undeveloped and hunters or fishers sort of wander from location to location without a second thought, boundary lines might not be clear. When it comes to building a fence, paving a driveway, or building something close to the end of the property, boundary lines are really important—having your property surveyed will result in something called a certification of the boundary. This will make it clear to you and everyone else what is yours and what belongs to others.


Underground Features

In some properties, underground features like wires and poles can go completely unnoticed until the building begins, and then someone is left with a big headache to deal with. More than this, underground features can make it extremely dangerous for workers. It’s better to know ahead of time about poles, lines, cables, manhole covers, vaults, catch basins, drains, wires, telegraph pipes (yes, these are still kicking around in some places) as well as telephone, gas, water, and electric systems. Beyond the construction concerns of discovering these things mid-project, utility companies might be granted permission to use part of your property in order to maintain lines requiring you to meet certain additional maintenance standards.


If The Previous Survey Is Old

Newer surveys tend to be more accurate. This is because we now have better measuring techniques, including global positioning systems technology. Relying on outdated surveys can leave you with a lot of disadvantages. Some properties haven’t been checked out since the nineteenth century. This means that there are often situations where you or your neighbors are unknowingly encroaching on each other’s land.


Property Changes

By looking at the above information, you can gather that surveys are particularly valuable when a property is being transformed or changing hands. As a general rule, if you are about to buy, sell, or improve land, a survey is usually a good idea.

The above points should help make it clear when land surveys are a good idea, and when they are indispensable. Again, every property is different, so you might want to speak to a professional about any other potential risks or concerns you should have given the area your land is located in.