If you consider your house and land among your largest assets, then protecting them is likely a top priority. When selling our buying land, knowing as much as possible about the property is key.
A survey will provide you with the extent and a detailed description of the property, without which you risk both your investment and friendly neighbors. The simple addition of a fence can be the cause of expensive litigation and much ill will if you are unfamiliar with the boundaries of your land, and a small distance can make a big difference.
Only a licensed surveyor can provide you with this information, and in turn can be your greatest assurance. In cases of dispute – among neighbors, municipal agencies, and contractors – your surveyor is an expert witness and assumes full professional responsibility for the accuracy of your survey.
The cost of the survey as a percentage of your total investment can be a small and reasonable price to pay for legal standing and peace of mind.
According to Ohio State law, only surveys made by licensed and registered Ohio Land Surveyors are legal. Only registered Land Surveyors have completed the academic requirements and practical training before licensing. Only registered Land Surveyors are required to maintain the necessary theoretical, practical, and ethical standards set by legislation. Similar laws exist in many other states, and are in place to protect landowners, lending institutions, insurers, builders, and governments.
Depending on the nature and extent of the work, anywhere from a few hundred to several thousand dollars. Fees for surveys are determined on an individual basis, depending mainly on the amount of time required for the research (properties and zones having a complete historical documentation package are more easily researched); the field survey (size, accessibility, and navigation of obstacles can impact this time-frame); drawing development; and the finalized documentation.
Prior to engaging your surveyor, you may wish to inquire of the likely estimate of the fees that the survey will entail, along with the expected completion date.
It’s in your interest to contact a Land Surveyor if you are Selling Property. You may have to provide your buyer with an up-to-date survey of your property in order to:
Give your buyer confidence in the purchase.
Allow your buyer to register the transaction at the County Clerk’s office.
Enable your buyer to make mortgage arrangements.
Verify to your buyer the size and extent of the property.
Avoid later legal disputes arising from inadequate or inaccurate property description.
You need to know what you’re getting. Only a map of the survey made by a licensed land surveyor can define what you’ve purchased. Your surveyor will undertake the necessary research, survey the property and prepare a survey map that will reveal:
Whether other people are entitled to partial use of your property through easements for utilities or rights-of-way.
Whether fences, trees, buildings, gardens, embankments, driveways, walkways, swimming pools, house additions are on the property.
Whether your deed describes your property accurately.
Your survey thus gives you a form of protection in addition to clarifying what you’ve bought, since it will reveal any encroachments or other irregularities that might be the cause of later legal disputes. In addition, your surveyor can mark the exact corners of your site with survey monuments.
A licensed professional surveyor will:
Check and ensure extent of title, and note planning restrictions, easements and other legalities.
Survey the site.
Engage other consultants to carry out preliminary studies, Engineering, Planning & Environmental issues to submit with draft plan.
Draft a proposed subdivision plan.
Prepare final plans for submittal.
A mortgage company, whether it be a bank, trust company or others, usually requires a survey before they will lend money. Why is this a necessity and why are you often asked for an up-to-date survey? Do the lot size, building set-backs, pool and fence locations meet with local Zoning Laws?
The mortgage company will require the survey to protect their investment. They want to be sure that the land and buildings on which they are lending money are as described in the documents which accompany the transaction. They also wish to know that if they have to foreclose there will be no problems in re-selling the property.
You need to protect your investment by making sure you are building on you own property. A mislocated fence, driveway or carport can cause legal problems and extra construction costs. Before you build, let a licensed land surveyor determine your property boundaries, replacing missing stakes if necessary. Allowing a surveyor to mark the location of your building on site before construction begins will also ensure that you meet setback requirements and other restrictions enforced by the municipality in their zoning laws. Failure to comply with zoning By-Laws could result in the loss of a future sale if the purchasers have an up-to-date survey done. Mortgage lenders generally do not advance money until zoning law infringements are cleared up.
“We have contracted Garcia Surveyors for numerous projects over the past several years. Throughout these projects they have worked closely with our staff and were very responsive to our requests. I recommend Garcia Surveyors.” — M. P. Choma, P.E. – Assistant Sanitary Engineer – Lucas County Ohio