Land Surveying: Estimating the Cost

land surveying

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Land surveying, to put it briefly, is the art and science of establishing or re-establishing property corners, property lines and/or boundaries.

There may be different reasons why someone wants a lot surveyed. One of the most common is to check if a piece of land is susceptible to flooding, to subdivide real estate to sell or deed to family members or to determine if there are any encroachments.

This could happen when a neighbour disputes that you’re using a piece of his lot or vice versa (for more about this, click here).

If you have to have a piece of land surveyed, the first thing that may come to mind is “how much does it cost?”

There are several factors determining exactly how much land surveying on your land would cost. The fact that this kind of service needs to be done by a professional contributes a lot to the total cost of the service, but choosing a non-professional to survey your land is dangerous, and probably illegal for the non-professional.

That is why you ought to take a good look around before settling with a surveying company. If you must work inside a particular budget, discuss this with the surveyor up-front. Very often he might be able to offer cost saving steps to get the work you need done within these cost limits.

The shape of the land also needs to be considered. A square or even a rectangle piece of land is somewhat easier to survey than an odd shaped parcel, or one with a lot of sides.

With the latter, the surveyor will need to spend more time in surveying the curves and the bends which means the cost of the service would increase. The actual size of the land is also an important factor here.

Keep in mind that the cost of land surveying will likely be proportionate to the time and effort that a land surveyor would spend on the project. If the land that you’re having surveyed isn’t accessible, or has thick vegetation, then the total price of the survey could go higher.

This is true of the varying weather conditions which could affect the work. Surveying in warm weather is sort of slower to keep from putting the crew members in danger. Also, most surveying can’t be done in the rain.

When requesting a quote, bear in mind surveyors base the estimate on expected conditions at the site. These conditions could change, bringing about additional costs. Always ask about these potential additional cost scenarios.

All that being said, competitive prices are also to be expected, which is why we recommend choosing a surveyor according to his experience and reputation instead of on the price he writes on a piece of paper. Mostly it is better to shell out a good amount of money on a survey that’s well-done rather than pick a company with a very “affordable” price but have the survey repeated because the results were wrong. To sum it up, it is recommended to discuss the expenses of the survey prior to ask the surveyor to begin with his work. It’s also wise to receive a contract that lets you understand what is expected of the land surveyor. This is one of the most important steps in having your land surveyed.