What to Look For In a Property Survey
Purchasers of commercial and residential real estate property may come across recorded surveys or request a property survey to be done in connection with a property transaction for a number of reasons. A property survey may educate a purchaser about structures or easements that a purchaser had not been aware of. It may also reveal any potential issues arising from the property’s setbacks or improvements that may come up later.
Surveyors will research property deeds and maps of the subject property and the neighboring properties. The surveyor may also contact the utility company and the title insurance company to identify recorded and unrecorded easements and encroachments.
When looking at a property survey, there are many types of information that one can look for:
- Legal Description. The legal description of the surveyed property should be included, showing the total area in square feet and acres of the property, references to lots, blocks, tracts, the city, county, and state where the property is located, and the point of beginning (P.O.B.) that matches the one stated on the recorded title of the property.
- Street Numbers of Buildings. Street numbers of any building on the property should be included, as well as the square footage of each building.
- Buildings, Paved Areas, and Setback Lines. The location and dimensions of all setback lines, parking, paved areas, sidewalks, and all buildings and structures should be included.
- Right-of-Way, Curbs, and Sidewalks. The survey should identify the location of roads, street, and alleys adjacent to the boundaries of the property and show the width of the roadway, as well as the location of curbs and curb cuts.
- Easement and Encroachments. A property survey should show utility easements, recorded easements, any encroachments by buildings or other improvements by neighboring properties.
- Possible Easements. The survey should show any roads, railroads, telephone lines, sewage lines, drains, oil and gas pipelines, fences, walls, hedges, culverts, billboards, driveways, and monuments that are on or across the property or near a boundary line that indicates the potential or actual existence of an easement.
- Surveyor’s Certification. The surveyor’s certification will appear on the survey and bear the surveyor’s original signature, registration number, and seal.
We suggest you be specific with your surveyor to make sure they put the exact information on the survey that you are looking for. Sometimes, surveyors do not put all the information you are looking for on the survey (like the location of existing structures or key measurements) so tell them in advance to be sure to get the information included.
At Schorr Law, we are experienced in handling property line disputes and providing counsel on matters involving real property property sales, purchases, and leases. To inquire about a free 30-minute consultation regarding your matter, and to see if you qualify for one, please contact us.
By Valerie Li, esq.