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Why A Boundary Survey Is Needed Before You Build On Your Land And What The Survey Entails

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If you plan to put up a fence for the first time or build anything on your property, boundary surveying is usually the first thing you need to do. This survey locates the boundary lines of your property so you won't put up a fence or shed on your neighbor's property or on an easement. Here is a look at why a boundary survey is important and the process of having it done.

Why You Need A Boundary Survey

Guessing where your property line is located could be a dangerous move, even if you're pretty sure where it is. You can't rely on the position of an old fence since fences aren't usually built right on a property line. Over the years, the line between your yard and a neighbor's yard may have drifted to one side or the other as landscaping matured. While you have a good idea where the line is, a boundary survey is exact.

An exact measurement of your boundary line can save you from legal trouble in the future if a new neighbor moves in and is testy about your fence being a couple of inches over the line. While you might be able to tear down a fence and move it without much expense, moving a garage or shed would be another matter. When you plan to build anything close to the edge of your property, getting a boundary survey first is essential.

How A Boundary Survey Is Done

Your property may already have markers buried in the corners. The surveyor tries to locate those first if they still exist. If the markers can't be found, then the corners of the property are identified so new markers can be put in. The markers might be a metal pin or rod that will last for years while being out of view and out of the way. A surveyor takes measurements of your land to locate the corners of your property, but that is just a small part of the process of having a boundary survey done. The rest is research through county or city records to uncover historical data on your property such as dimensions on an old parcel map. The added research data acts as confirmation that the new corners are in the right location.

A boundary survey can also include easement areas and other important information you need to know about the land when you want to build something on it. When the survey is complete, the public records for your property are updated and you'll have official documents as proof of your boundary lines. The whole process could take a few days to complete, so be sure to take the time requirement into account if you're scheduling a fence or shed installation project.