From a new construction project to purchasing a new property, it’s important to understand when a survey is recommended as well as required. Our team of licensed surveyors perform the due diligence needed to save you from a potentially costly mistake.
The Surveying Services We Provide
- ALTA/NSPS Land Title Surveys
- Boundary Survey
- Civil Engineering
- Construction Layout
- FEMA Elevation Certificate
- Property Corners Staked
- Site Plan
- Topographic Survey
Residential Land Surveying in New Rochelle, NY
A fully qualified and licensed land surveyor can save homeowners just like you time, money, headaches, effort, and legal trouble. Here are some of the services that land surveyors perform that can make homeownership and neighbor relations better.
Identifying Land Boundaries
This is probably the most common reason. Knowing the legal boundaries of occupancy or possession is vital before you embark on a fence-building project, adding a gazebo, or even cementing your driveway.
If your property is close to alleys or streets, getting a boundary line certification lets you know exactly where your property ends. Most surveys clearly state that there are no issues involving your property and the adjacent property.
There may be old arrangements that allow your neighbor to cross part of your property if it blocks their access to the street. This agreement is called easement and it will appear in your land survey as well as being on the public record.
Ensure Your Add-ons Are Legal
A land survey will ensure that your home improvement, add-ons, and changes you make to your property are legal. Many municipalities around New Rochelle have rules and regulations based on a structure’s height, bulk, dimensions, and more.
Scalice Works with Title Companies
Title companies can protect property owners and themselves from serious legal infringement by insisting that all buyers obtain an updated land survey. Unfortunately, it’s too common that buyers don’t get a new survey done because it adds to the seemingly endless mound of bills. While getting a quality land survey by a licensed surveyor will add to the buyer’s expenses, it will spare them massive headaches in the future.
Using an outdated property survey presents a host of potential problems, such as disputes with neighbors over that fence you want to add that can erupt into serious and drawn-out legal battles. There are enough cautionary tales out there of property owners who used an outdated survey and thought they were in compliance when starting a home improvement project only to find that the municipal lines had changed. Give your clients peace of mind at closing that every step has been taken to avoid issues in the future by insisting on a new land survey.
New Rochelle Land Survey FAQs
Have a lot of questions about getting a land survey in New Rochelle? We can help you understand more about the process, costs, and disputes by answering some frequently asked questions.
- How Does a New Rochelle Land Surveyor Help in Boundary Disputes?
- What Questions Should I Ask a New Rochelle Land Surveyor?
- How Much Does a Survey Cost in New Rochelle?
- How Can I Survey My Own Property in New Rochelle?
- How Do You Determine Property Lines in New Rochelle?
- Can You Claim Land After 7 Years in New Rochelle?
- Can You Claim Land in New Rochelle if You Maintain It?
- Do I Need a Permit to Put a Fence Around My Yard in New Rochelle?
- How Long Does It Take to Survey a Plot of Land in New Rochelle?
- Why Do You Need a Land Survey in New Rochelle?
How Does a New Rochelle Land Surveyor Help in Boundary Disputes?
Boundary disputes can occur for a variety of reasons. Often, they happen when a landowner encroaches on a neighbor’s land. While some disputes can be easily settled between owners, some cases end up going to court.
Ideally, boundary surveys would always be correct, and no one would run into problems over which land belongs to whom. But not all surveys are the same, and neither are all surveyors. In disputes that go to court, a land surveyor in New Rochelle can act as an expert witness to help resolve the matter.
A third-party professional in these matters can conduct research, measure carefully, review boundary line descriptions, investigate owners’ intentions, then report their findings to the court. Based on their expert testimony, a judge will ultimately rule to settle the dispute.
What Questions Should I Ask a New Rochelle Land Surveyor?
Before you hire a New Rochelle land surveyor, you’ll want to make sure they’re the right person for the job. To get a better understanding of their expertise and worth ethic, you should ask them the following questions:
- Are you fully licensed in New York to do land surveys?
- How long have you been doing land surveys in New York?
- Will you provide accurate results that show my property’s boundaries?
- How much will the job cost me?
- Do you have liability insurance?
- What’s your crew’s experience and education level?
- Do you have customer reviews and references?
You always want to know you’ve got the right surveyor to do the specific job you need so that you know you’re not wasting your time or money on an inferior, inaccurate survey.
How Much Does a Survey Cost in New Rochelle?
Estimating the cost of a survey in New Rochelle without knowing what kind of survey you need or determining other variables is next to impossible. However, according to 2022 data from HomeAdvisor, national estimates range between $338 and $670, with an average of $504.
That being said, you could be looking at a simple plot plan survey on a small parcel of land that might only cost you $75. Alternatively, you might require a more sophisticated ALTA survey, which could reach up to $3,000. Surveys for boundaries, topography, new construction, mortgages, fencing, staked sites, and additions all have different costs associated with them.
When a professionally licensed surveyor does the job, they’ll calculate an estimate for your survey based on:
- The type of survey you need
- Factors about your lot (type, shape, size, age, etc.)
- Research and travel time required
- Your lot’s geographic location
- Your lot’s accessibility and terrain
- The time of year the survey is being done
How Can I Survey My Own Property in New Rochelle?
Many homeowners needing surveys wonder how they can survey their New Rochelle property themselves to save money. In New York, the law requires survey maps to be completed and signed by licensed, registered surveyors to be valid.
Attempting to submit a survey map if you’re unlicensed and unregistered can get you into plenty of legal trouble. Even a slight miscalculation could land you in court with a neighbor over a boundary dispute.
Of course, you’re free to learn on your own how to survey your property, as long as you have a licensed surveyor confirm your findings. It’ll require you to:
- Obtain the deed and plat map from the county assessor or online, as well as any other property documents
- Read and understand the legal description, as well as the survey map, PLSS, metes and bounds, bearings, and other associated terms
- Collect the right tools for the job, which can include a GPS, map, compass, flag markers, tape measure, levels, a tripod, and possibly much more
- Use the survey map, PLSS coordinates, or even Google Maps to locate a known corner of your property
- Know how to conduct the survey from your known corner location
How Do You Determine Property Lines in New Rochelle?
Your homeowner’s deed will provide a legal description that will help you determine your New Rochelle property lines. Many people have trouble understanding the language of a legal description, so they hire professional surveyors. If you’re able to read and understand it, you can take a tape measure and follow along from your known starting point.
Apart from that, you may also visit the Assessor’s Office in New Rochelle and request a survey map, which could take a couple of days to produce. Alternatively, you can search for your property on the Westchester County GIS.
Can You Claim Land After 7 Years in New Rochelle?
Some misconceptions around old English common law have erroneously led people to believe they can claim land after seven years of occupying it as a squatter. While the concept of adverse possession is legitimate, it’s much trickier and more rigorous than it seems.
Trespassers can claim the right to land ownership under this doctrine, but their ownership will only be legally recognized if they follow the statute in their state and meet all the qualifications. Each state has a different time span for how long a squatter must consecutively stay on the property.
If you want to claim land in New Rochelle, you must have been using that land uninterrupted for 10 years under New York law. But to claim ownership of the land’s title by court ruling under adverse possession, the trespasser must also comply with numerous other requirements.
Can You Claim Land in New Rochelle if You Maintain It?
If you’re attempting to claim land in New Rochelle by maintaining it as its occupier, you need to know that it’s not as simple as it sounds. New York laws for adverse possession make it clear that several requirements must be met by trespassers before they can legally claim ownership of land.
Under N.Y. Real Prop. Acts. Law § 511, the trespasser must maintain continued occupation and possession of the land for 10 years. Under N.Y. Real Prop. Acts. Law § 501, their occupation and possession must also be:
- “With or without knowledge of the other’s superior ownership rights, in a manner that would give the owner a cause of action for ejectment”
- Upon expiration of the statute of limitations (the owner failed to remove the trespasser during those 10 years)
- Adverse (without the true owner’s permission and against their rights)
- Under claim of right (having a reasonable belief that the property belongs to the trespasser)
- Open and notorious (using the land as the true owner would, without hiding the trespasser’s occupancy)
- Continuous (unbroken under the statutory 10-year period)
- Exclusive (possessed by the trespasser alone)
- Actual (exercising control over the property)
The burden of proof rests on the adverse possessor to prove all requirements are met. Even if they are, a judge will ultimately decide and order ownership over to the adverse possessor.
Do I Need a Permit to Put a Fence Around My Yard in New Rochelle?
You do not need a permit to install a fence around your yard in New Rochelle. However, according to city zoning regulations, you must comply with its laws when installing fencing.
In New Rochelle, front yard fences cannot exceed four feet in height. Back and side yard fences cannot exceed six feet in height. Refer to the Zoning Code of the City of New Rochelle § 331-16 for exceptions to these regulations.
How Long Does It Take to Survey a Plot of Land in New Rochelle?
The time it takes to survey a plot of land in New Rochelle will vary widely depending on several factors, including the size of your land and the type of survey you need. Your survey could take a little over a week or up to several weeks to complete. When attempting to determine the timespan for your survey, you must account for:
- The surveyor’s schedule and time spent on research: Before a surveyor can get started, they’ll need to know the lay of the land. If they can’t access existing deeds and plats online, they must retrieve them from the County Assessor’s Office, which can take time. Furthermore, they must review the legal description in detail.
- Conducting the survey itself: A survey won’t usually take longer than a day, but it could take up to eight hours if the land is large enough and the type of survey is more involved. General homebuyer’s report surveys will average around 90 minutes.
- Gathering data to produce results: A general homebuyer’s report survey without conflicts in previous reports might take three to five business days before you get full results. In many situations, a simple survey can be briefly summarized over the phone without waiting for the full report. If you’ve requested a more complex type of survey, especially one that includes structures on the property, you might be looking at eight business days or so.
Why Do You Need a Land Survey in New Rochelle?
You will need a land survey in New Rochelle any time you’re buying, selling, or wanting to add or alter structures on your property. A surveyor can determine your property’s boundary lines and locate its features.
Whenever properties change ownership, mortgage lenders will request recent survey data. They will ask the buyer to have an independent survey done to confirm their report as well. Apart from property lines and features, a survey will help reveal:
- Existing improvements
- Party walls
- Joint driveways
- Surface water (ponds, creeks, wells, etc.)
- Zoning classification
Land surveys don’t come with expiration dates. But if you’ve owned land for long enough, there hasn’t been much construction done on it, and you haven’t had a survey done within five to 10 years, consider getting a new one. If there’s been a lot of activity on the land, such as a more residential area, you might want to consider getting a new survey much sooner than that.