When you purchase a home or piece of land, the title company leading the real estate transaction will at some point request a copy of the property survey. Surveys are significant to the home buyer, clearly identifying property boundaries and legal points of which to be aware.
There are several factors of importance title companies attach to the confines of a property in question, the least of which is to add to settlement costs. If you can obtain the original survey from public record, good for you – you may save yourself some money. However, in the event the original survey can’t be located (too far buried or no longer accessible) or the lender requires a more recent document, ordering a survey on the property will be necessary. Here’s why:
Top 6 Reasons a Property Survey Is Necessary
Utility and Municipality Claims: Recording the location of utility pipes, wires and other equipment is especially important prior to any type of construction, but it also determines if a utility provider or municipality has certain rights to utilize your property to maintain services. The location of easements, right-of-ways and the like must be made obvious to all parties affected by the property.
Exact Demarcation of Boundary Lines: Knowing where the property lines begin and end is crucial in establishing the value of the property, among other factors – such as avoiding future boundary disputes.
Presence of Burial Grounds: A land survey provides information on the presence of cemeteries or burial grounds on the property, areas in which building or landscaping may be prohibited.
Zoning Classifications/Restrictions: Understanding zoning classifications and restrictions governing the property assists in knowing exactly how the property can be used according to city, county and/or state law.
Standing Property Improvements/Renovations: A survey will determine if any improvements or renovations having occurred on or to the property fall within legal parameters, and whether any changes need to be made to the property to comply with laws governing the land and any structures.
Encroachment/Joint Structures: It’s important to identify areas of encroachment (for instance, a neighbor’s shed that sits partially on your property) or the sharing of structures between two or more properties. Dealing with such issues now can save you money and legal headaches down the road.
There are certainly other considerations that go into a property survey (particularly if you plan to add a pool, fence or other structures in the future), underscoring the need to hire a professional to cover all concerns affecting this critical document. For more information on property surveys or assistance with hiring the right professional for the job, contact Linear Title & Escrow today at (757) 340-0340.