Land SurveyorUnless you own and know how to use surveying instruments and can interpret graphical data, then you definitely need to hire a land surveyor before closing on a home. A land survey is an essential part of buying a home, as equally important as choosing a mortgage program.

The main reason to get the property surveyed before buying it is to find out hidden aspects of the site that may lead to potential issues and major headaches. A surveyor will present you with tons of different data about the site. But if you encounter these things, you may want to give the purchase a second thought.

Site Usability

A survey will be able to detect if the site is not buildable or suitable for residential use. The land may be threatened by subsidence or movement, say if the soil structure is weak, or the property sits on a floodplain or fault line. These are the things you would want to know for the sake of you and your family’s safety.

Limited Access to Utilities

While these issues are more common in off-grid locations, you should still check. Some low-density neighborhoods do have problems with their connection to municipal facilities. Ignoring these issues will cost you money in the future. Off-grid homes may be charming, but bear in mind the future inconveniences.

Unsettled Boundary Disputes

The last thing you want when buying a home is dealing with boundary disputes and other issues, such as unpaid liens and encroachments. A surveyor will able to detect territorial or land use issues that may impinge on the transferring of the title. Buying a home is a major financial decision, so you would want to move to your future home with a clean start.

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If house viewing gives you the first impression of a house, a land survey lets you see the “big picture” and know whether you’re making the right choice or not. It’s alright to assume that the land has been surveyed before, but it’s still wiser to get a second opinion. Your agent may not be aware of certain issues or is deliberately withholding information that might influence your decision.