How to Get Your Property Surveyed: An Easy-to-Follow Guide

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Purchasing, selling, or remodeling your home is a significant investment, and it should involve diligent research and preparation. Buying a home or building your home requires a property survey from a professional surveyor. Most mortgage companies may require a property survey to ascertain the worth of money they will provide in the loan. Property surveys are not just essential in the purchase stage of your home. They are also indispensable when you plan to remodel or sell your home in the future. It helps to know where your property ends and begins and where your property lines are exactly located. It can prevent complications in your renovation or home sale and make the selling or remodeling process smoother.

Here, we will share some guides on how to get your property surveyed and put your mind at ease about the extent of your property.

Hire a Land Surveyor

A property survey can be a DIY task if you can follow your property lines. However, the landscape can change over time, and vegetation can grow over where your property’s boundaries used to be. At times when surveying your property by yourself seems complicated or you are not sure about the boundaries of your property, the pros from recommend that you hire a land surveyor to handle the property survey task. You need an expert who can clearly define property lines no matter how many times the landscape has shifted. A land surveyor has the education, training, and specialized equipment to make legally binding property surveys. With a reputable and capable surveyor handling your property survey, you can be assured that you will not encroach your neighbor’s property and vice versa. A land surveyor also qualifies as an expert witness in court cases involving land disputes. 

Land surveyors do a meticulous and detailed process of surveying your property. They will compare existing markers with historical property records to accurately draw your property lines. They research the legal descriptions about the land or property to be surveyed, including its history. The surveyors will then perform fieldwork, where they go out to the property and make a topographical sketch of the land, its boundaries, and other elements that define your property.

Other factors that surveyors check are the following:

  • Zoning classification
  • Certification of existing improvements to your property
  • For properties in suburbs, subdivisions, gated communities, etc.
    • Right-of-way
    • Easements
    • Abandoned roads
    • Joint driveways
    • Party walls
    • Rights of support
    • Encroachments
    • Overhangs or Projections
  • For properties near roads, streets, highways, or alleys
    • Gores
    • Gaps
    • Overlaps

A property survey can take time, but once it is finished, you will receive documentation containing your street address property description, adjacent building and property locations, and any improvements you can make to your land or property. The land surveyor’s property survey will help you avoid legal complications regarding your property.

Explore Property Survey Records

Searching property survey records from the assessor’s office, property office, or courthouse is another way to get your property surveyed or, more likely, attain survey records of the property you are buying or owning. As most states require property surveys to be filed with the local government, you are most likely able to find survey records of your property. It may be time-consuming to search the property records from government offices but you can minimize the cost by performing your own survey of your property boundaries or have a land surveyor reconfirm the information stated in the record.

Search a Property Survey Online

If you are pressed for time to visit the courthouse or assessor’s office, you can access property survey information about your home or lot online. Most local governments have online records of properties filed or registered with them. The more specific the information you provide, such as the street address, date of the last survey, boundary information, and other relevant data, the easier it is for you to obtain the survey you need. While a limited number of records can be digitalized, your online search can also pinpoint the office where you can retrieve the complete record. You can call the office to request a copy of the survey and have it sent through mail or scanned and sent as an image file through email.

Examine the Property Deed

Don’t get confused with a property and a title. The former is a legal document that transfers ownership from the previous owner to the new one. The latter is also a legal document indicating who is the current and legal owner of the property. The property deed contains various pieces of information that are relevant to your property’s legal boundaries. If you are lucky, you will find detailed measurements of your property’s survey done by a land surveyor. From there, you can choose to survey the property yourself or require minimal assistance from a land surveyor.

Having your property surveyed can be easy. There are different ways to get your property surveyed, and some of them include some effort on your part. An official property survey not only clearly defines your property lines but also helps put your mind at ease by avoiding legal complications in the future. Good fences make good neighbors as most people say, so establish clear bounds of your property with a survey and help your neighbors in the process.


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