Before you build anything on your property, you must have a land survey in New York done to determine its boundaries. New York law mandates that you’ll require a land survey if you intend to sell your property, purchase a house, or add an addition onto your home.
Your surveyor will work alongside you, your contractor, and your municipality to ensure your improvements are constructed in the correct location. This helps eliminate conflicts from any property enhancements that may have been improperly situated.
When Do You Need a New York Land Survey?
A land surveyor needs to be flexible enough to help commercial and residential property owners in various ways. For example, they perform to create topographic maps, avert land encroachment disputes, and guide your construction project. You may also need a land survey when:
- You are buying or selling a home
- You are applying for a building permit with your local town or village (for example, to add a pool, deck, shed, etc.)
- You need to locate your property lines because you’re putting up a fence
You’ll need a land survey in New York for a variety of reasons. And there are many types of land surveys that each have specific functions.
Creating Topographic Surveys
Having a thorough understanding of a parcel’s topography can help builders and investors avoid costly construction shutdowns. Topography surveys identify trees, analyze elevation, and help describe contour details. They also pinpoint streets, drainage features, and types of terrain.
A topographic survey is required for most building permit applications and is commonly used for:
- Remodeling projects
- New construction
- Utility designs
- Bridge and road improvements or construction
- Landscaping plans
- Drainage designs
Identifying Property Boundaries and Dimensions
A property boundary survey is a fundamental report that establishes a parcel’s perimeter and guarantees it coincides with its legal description. This survey type is also called a title or mortgage survey because title companies require them at mortgage closings to ensure a property is free of encroachment concerns.
Additionally, local ordinances often insist on current boundary surveys when property owners build fences and other structures on their land. These reports are vital to landowners needing to know where their property begins and ends.
New York law requires property owners to use a licensed land surveyor before construction is performed.
Avoiding Encroachment Issues
You may experience property encroachment issues if you or your neighbor are unsure of your property lines. Encroachment can occur when one property owner erects a structure on the property of another or allows a tree limb (or another object) to protrude over the neighbor’s land.
Property encroachments can be a complication when it’s time to market and sell your house, business, or land. In some cases, an encroachment can result in your neighbor acquiring your land through adverse possession claims.
This may happen if their actions meet an adverse possession cause of action under New York real property laws. Employing a land surveyor can help you avoid a civil suit over encroachment or other property issues. A surveyor will create a finalized boundary survey which can be filed as evidence in a legal dispute.
Purchasing or Selling a Plot of Land
Real estate investors or buyers may require a topography report or property survey when performing their due diligence on a property. They may do this prior to closing to ensure their investment can achieve their targeted return on investment (ROI).
A survey can assist a seller or an investor with information including:
- Plot size to help assess the property’s value.
- Property description to help curtail disputes over inaccurate information.
- Highest and best usage of the property, giving the buyer assurance regarding their proposed investment.
You will need a land surveyor in New York because property surveys are not optional. State law requires a study to be conducted before you can close on a new home or another property type.
Guiding Renovations and New Construction
If you’re planning to build on your plot of land, you’ll need a professional land surveyor to create a land survey.
Acquiring a professional land survey allows you to map out varying land features that could adversely affect your construction project. Civil engineers, designers, and architects use these detailed survey reports to create accurate project plans.
Getting a land survey prior to the start of your project can help you adhere to local laws and avert violations, potentially saving you from costly fines.
Refinancing or Applying for a Mortgage Loan
To refinance your property or apply for a mortgage loan, you may need an American Land Title Association (ALTA)/ National Society of Professional Surveyors (NSPS) survey to complete your due diligence. You’ll also require one if you plan on transferring ownership of your commercial real estate property.
Title companies or lenders will require an ALTA/NSPS land title survey before issuing mortgage or title insurance. This boundary survey also includes:
- The central building location plus structural improvements
- Ancillary building sites
- Boundary lines
- Building height (for commercial properties)
- Identification of gas, water, railway, and telephone easements
- Structure height and square footage
An ALTA survey lays out property details to help interested parties avoid unforeseen easement locations, boundary disputes, and encroachment issues. Additionally, this type of survey will highlight zoning issues and any mathematical calculation discrepancies.
Scalice Land Surveying for Your New York Surveying Needs
From providing detailed maps to establishing property lines, there are plenty of reasons why you need a land surveyor. Scalice Land Surveying is a Long Island surveying company that offers a wide range of surveying services, including title, boundary, and topographic surveys.
Also, due to the stringent training and educational demands required by New York State laws, land surveys can only be prepared by licensed land surveyors. At Scalice Land Surveying, our team of professionals is fully licensed and has a combined 75 years of experience.
Call or contact us online for a free estimate today. We’ll provide you with a professional New York land survey in as little as five business days!