What is a property survey and why get one?

What is a property survey and why get one?
Here are some of the reasons a property survey or a home buyer’s survey can help when buying a home.
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What is a property survey? 

A property or boundary survey provides details of the boundary lines and the legal description of a property, including its area and the condition of the home. 

While you are not legally required to get a property survey when buying a home, it is highly recommended you get one performed by a registered cadastral surveyor. 

Why should you get a property survey?

When you sign a contract to buy a home, you’re also signing up for any defects or problems that property has. While a property survey is not required by the law, it is worth considering so you know the exact physical characteristics and the legal boundaries of the property.

Here are some of the reasons a property survey or a home buyer’s survey can help when buying a home.

1. Know the exact condition of the home

A property survey will give you detailed information about the condition of the home. The inspector will determine whether the home has any structural problems, if any major repairs are needed such as roof repairs or rewiring, and if the property is in the flood zone area.

It also provides you with a comprehensive commentary on the property, from the kind of walls used to the type of glazing.

2. Recognise the boundary lines

A property surveys tells you where the boundary lies so you know what land you can use if you plan on constructing any additional structures such as a pool, a driveway, or a fence.

3. Legal information

A property survey also provides important legal information that you can use to protect yourself from lawsuits or neighbourhood disputes if you plan on building on the land in the future.

4. Identify if there are any existing easements

It also tells you if there are any existing utility easements over your property such as water mains or underground cables which a company needs to access. It is critical to know the location of underground utilities before you start any construction.

Additionally, an easement or a right of carriageway will tell you if your neighbour has a legal right to pass through your property and vice versa. Easements are not usually shown on the deed, however, a property survey will indicate any existing easement over your property.

5. Highlight zoning restrictions

Land surveyors will also identify what zoning restrictions the property has. Zoning restrictions are regulations that affect how a property may be used. Zoning indicates if the property can be used for residential, commercial, or industrial purposes.

The survey will include details on how you can use the property and makes sure it’s being used appropriately. Violating zoning rules may result in penalties and legal action from the government.

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