What is a Property Survey?
A lot of research and due diligence comes before buying a home. Many homebuyers are itching to speed up the process so they can move into their dream home already, yet that can't happen without knowing the state of the property and preparing for whatever happens. One of the key components of due diligence is a property survey. This crucial step protects you from any unexpected issues down the road. This post will look closely at what a property survey entails and the importance of completing your due diligence.
Property surveys are conducted by professionals trained in the land surveying field, appropriately named "surveyors." All property surveys begin with research into legal descriptions about the property, before they even step foot on the land. They'll research the history of the deed and do a title search, to rule out any discrepancies concerning who owns the land.
Then, the surveyor will actually go out to the property and sketch out the land, its boundaries, and different elements that make up your property. This is called fieldwork, and aims to provide a map detailing the property's legal boundaries. The survey also includes a written description of the property, street address, locations of buildings or adjacent properties, and any improvements a homeowner can make to the land.
Mortgage companies often require a property survey, but some are satisfied with title insurance in its place. Even though property surveys aren't always legally required, it's still a smart move to have a property survey carried out.
A property survey includes a lot of important information that provides security for buyers. This description of the property can be incredibly useful when it comes to understanding its layout or identifying potential issues with neighbors. As previously mentioned, it addresses possible improvements the homeowner could make, from new fencing to adding a deck to the back of the house.
Additionally, understanding right-of-ways and easements are essential to property surveys, as they could impact your use and enjoyment of the property. These are elements that detail what to do with shared yards or driveways, or if your neighbor has a right of way to the street or alleyway between your homes.
To complete your due diligence, you should get multiple quotes from surveyor companies and pick the one that works best for you. Do this first, carefully review the surveyor's findings, and get the answers to any questions you might have.
If you are able to, attend the survey so you can see the property and its boundaries for yourself. It is a great opportunity to direct questions to the surveyor in real time. Another important step is to review any previous surveys that have been conducted on the property, to pinpoint past issues and what steps were taken to resolve them.
Note: a property survey is not a substitute for a home inspection, it is a complement to it. A property survey is focused on the land and its boundaries, while a home inspection looks at the condition of the home itself. It's important to have both a property survey and a home inspection done before buying a home.
At Unreal Estate, we understand the importance of property surveys and want to make sure our readers are informed and protected when buying a home. If you have any questions about property surveys or the home buying process in general, please don't hesitate to reach out to us. We're here to help.
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