Buying land, whether commercial or residential, is always a pricy endeavor, even though prices have eased somewhat lately. Which is why searching for a lot that you want and making a proposal for it without conducting a land survey within the area is possibly the biggest mistake that anyone can make.
Here’s why it’s really important that you have land surveying done first:
Land surveyors can analyze if you’re actually getting what you’re going to pay for. This means determine whether the sidewalks, trees, driveways and even the bird bath is part of the property you’re about to buy. Land surveying would also see whether the neighbors are encroaching into the property, which could then mean you’re likely to have problems later on with your neighbors. Working with a land surveyor doesn’t only mean they determine what you’re getting or perhaps not getting – land surveyors are the experts, and they can help with building regulations, wetland regulations, etc. Be aware that these regulations can change anytime, but land surveyors should be updated on these regulations, or they will refer you to an individual who is.
Let’s say the present landowner (the one selling the land) can present you with old land survey documents? You should still hire your land surveyor to determine whether the boundary monuments continue to be in place. Also, land surveying done a number of years back would possibly not show recent changes to the land. If the existing survey is older than about a decade, you need to get a new survey. Technology and surveying standards are greater now and may give you more confidence in the survey work.
Second, that survey was completed for that owner. He may have instructed the surveyor not to show some things on the drawing. At least have a land surveyor get out there and evaluate the parcel with this survey in hand. We have seen numerous cases when a whole new land survey would save the customer thousands so don’t become a victim.
I’ve heard many individuals say hiring a land surveyor is nothing but unnecessary expense. I’ll let you know what’s unnecessary: the worries caused by paying 1000s of dollars for something and ending up not receiving what you were expecting. If you’re smart, you’d hire a professional land surveyor prior to making any land purchases.