Top Reasons For A Professional Land Survey Now
The reason people buy land is so that they can call it their own. Sounds pretty obvious right? It should also be obvious that you should understand exactly where your property ends and your neighbor’s begins, in addition to reliable information about what is contained within your property’s borders.
Guessing Won’t Cut It
Back in the day, something like “about 10 feet past the creek on the south side” would suffice for property boundaries. Unfortunately, with our modern legal system, you can’t afford to be that vague. Not only is a rough estimate of a property line not good enough, but it can also get you caught in a whirlwind of legal issues.
Property Line Dilemmas
For example, let’s say you decide to go hunting one morning. You’ve been tracking this buck on your cameras for months, and you’re confident that he’ll make his perfect 10-point appearance on this fine morning. You wait and wait and wait…and then like the hero in a movie; your prized buck comes out into the clearing. Time suddenly slows down and you watch his every movement in slow motion, waiting for him to turn broadside. You then realize that he is standing right around the property line (the one that is 10 feet past some creek). You convince yourself it isn’t that big a deal and drop the white-tailed monster with a single shot. On your way down from the stand, you hear a four-wheeler pull into the clearing. Your neighbor, John, says he was on the way to his stand when he heard a shot. Upon seeing where the deer was killed, John claims the deer is his because it was killed on his land. You protest, of course, telling him how you have been tracking the buck’s whereabouts for months and then John pulls out the results from his property survey, showing that the deer was indeed killed on his land.
That isn’t a huge ordeal. Sure, you’re mad because you lost a deer, but that was the only consequence. If the hunting story didn’t spark any concern, this next example will.
Purchasing or selling property is virtually impossible without a title survey. No one will ever purchase a property if the seller cannot clearly state where the property begins and/or ends. It is also essential that you, as a seller, are able to provide information regarding the layout of underground utilities. Even outside of purchasing properties, it is very important to know where underground pipes, wires, and cables are located on your land. It is also possible that existing structures on your property violate boundaries and regulations based on your property’s location. With this in mind, it is wise to get a title survey before building or installing structures on your property. If it is a big enough structure, such as a pool, then an up-to-date property survey will likely be required.
Keeping Information Up To Date
A title survey will also be required to re-establish outdated land titles. An example of this would be if your property was purchased when the area was mostly rural, but over the years, more roads and infrastructures have been built surrounding the property. The original title information on your property is most likely outdated and would not be deemed valid. In this case, an up-to-date survey would be required.
Another thing revealed in professional surveys is old cemeteries. Yes, you read that right. It is not uncommon for individuals to hire a professional to conduct a survey and discover that their backyard is actually a final resting place. Depending on your values, this could be an interesting fact about your yard or a reason to immediately sell your property. Regardless, I don’t think anyone was to break ground for a new pool and find a skeleton or two.
Land Surveys As Evidence
Although no one ever wants to see a day in court, there may come a day when you find yourself in a legal battle for justice. Professional surveys can be used as evidence in courtrooms and investigations. This is a crucial asset to have if you engage in a legal property battle or if someone wishes to start one with you.
Clear Property Lines On Any Terrain
Oftentimes, boundaries aren’t as clear-cut as a road marking the end of your property. As we expressed in the hunting example earlier, when dealing with rural terrain, property lines can be at best, blurry to the unprofessional eye. A professional survey will give you precise property boundaries on any terrain (creeks, hills, swamps, ect.)
Hiring A Professional Is ALWAYS Better
In some areas of life, the “do it yourself” approach works out just as well, if not better than hiring someone else to do it for you. Land surveying is not one of these areas. If you make the decision to conduct your own land survey on your property, you will be faced with a number of problems. First, your land survey is almost guaranteed to be completely inaccurate. The equipment used by professional surveyors is designed to minimalize human error as much as possible and requires extensive training to master.
If by some miracle you manage to conduct an accurate survey on your own, it still won’t do you as much good as hiring a professional from a legal standpoint. A potential buyer of your property will likely want a professional land survey to back the property boundaries and layout information. A “do it yourself” survey will also be much weaker, if not useless, in court as evidence. In all of these scenarios, you will likely have to hire a professional to survey your land for valid results in the eyes of the law. With that in mind, it doesn’t make sense to spend all that time and effort doing it yourself, only for it to be deemed invalid in any legal arena. Don’t waste your time, hire a professional and get your property surveyed properly.
How Do I Get Started?
Luckily, you are in the perfect place to receive a professional survey of your property. Joseph M. Petito Land Surveying & Civil Engineering has been helping property owners for over 50 years with unmatched quality and customer experience. Take a look at our website and decide which of our services best suits your needs, and give us a call to set up a consultation!