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Thread: Land Surveys

  1. #1

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    Default Land Surveys

    HAve any of you ever had a surveyor come to your house so that you could build a fence? if so roughly what price was this service? The reason I ask is that our douchbag neughbour said he was in on the fence till he saw my dad and I with the land survey, measuring out were the fence would be. He thought it was to much on his side. Now he wants nothing to do with the project. Now we are thinking of getting the property line surveyed so we can shut this dipsh!t up. Sorry there is more to the story I'm just pissed right now.
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    If you don't know where your property pins are, see if you can get a metal detector and locate them.

    Also, many counties and municipalities have their plats online that are usually TIFF files or may require you to download a viewer to see, i.e. Autodesk MapGuide. With these you can find the shape of your lot, distances, etc. without having to hire a surveyor if you are unsure.

    Many property pins may have a tag or aluminum cap with the surveyor's number on it, i.e LS 1111 or RLS 1111 or even PE 1111 (as in professional engineer). If you find those then you know they are likely set where they are supposed to be.

    I'm not a surveyor, but I need this info a lot for my job. I wouldn't suspect things to be too much different in the Great White North, so that should get you started.

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    if you've got a target or walmart, you can probably pick up a toy metal detector for under $20 that will do the trick. Just did this at my place last weekend - if it's been surveyed before there's probably going to be an iron pipe at each corner.

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    We just had a corner search done for $300. Actual surveying would probably be $1000 or so.
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    Have you called any Survey companies in your area? That will give you most accurate idea. I work in Title Insurance and here a survey of property like a residential lot and block runs about $350 basic property line survey. Of course your cost will vary based on where you live.

    Call around that's better than asking on an audio forum :)
    "Appreciation of audio is a completely subjective human experience. Measurements can provide a measure of insight, but are no substitute for human judgment. Why are we looking to reduce a subjective experience to objective criteria anyway? The subtleties of music and audio reproduction are for those who appreciate it. Differentiation by numbers is for those who do not".--Nelson Pass

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    Heiney9,

    Right again! Willow I have a similar problem and was told I should pay for the survey. There are no visible pins and I don't think anything is buried either...this is a 109 year old house? So I have a fence around it that was there before I bought it but the fence is about 6-8 feet inside the actual property line. So my neighbor has a garden behind my garage because 'he' thinks (or wants that to be the property line and that part of my house has the fence attached to the garage which is attached to the house which is all closed off from my neighbors property but I still own 6 feet of all the land that runs on that side of my house/fence x 120 feet. And that's 720 sq. ft. this guy want me to pretend is not mine. So I'm a bit pissed myself and I am going to have this property surveyed and I may need an attorney to do a title search. I currently OWN the house..no mortgage?

    I hear you Brother! Around 350-400 is what I've been quoted as well.

    cnh
    Last edited by cnh; 05-06-2009 at 11:55 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cnh View Post
    Heiney9,

    Right again! Willow I have a similar problem and was told I should pay for the survey. There are no visible pins and I don't think anything is buried either...this is a 109 year old house? So I have a fence around it that was there before I bought it but the fence is about 6-8 feet inside the actual property line. So my neighbor has a garden behind my garage because 'he' thinks (or wants that to be the property line and that part of my house has the fence attached to the garage which is attached to the house which is all closed off from my neighbors property but I still own 6 feet of all the land that runs on that side of my house/fence x 120 feet. And that's 720 sq. ft. this guy want me to pretend is not mine. So I'm a bit pissed myself and I am going to have this property surveyed and I may need an attorney to do a title search. I currently OWN the house..no mortgage?

    I hear you Brother! Around 350-400 is what I've been quoted as well.

    cnh
    You better hope your neighbor hasn't been doing this for 7-10 years (varies by state usually) or he may be able claim proscriptive right since you (or the previous owner) haven't made a big deal about it until now.

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    Where I live, $350 is about right for plat and pin location. If you want topo its closer to $500. As said before, calling around is best.

    Simply looking for the pins may not be what you want depending on how the drainage, utility, and road easements work in your area. In a lot of places, they place the pin at corner of your lot, which may not include the landscapable area within the easements. You may not be allowed to erect a fence within the easement.

    I realize cash may be tight and fences get expensive. But I am always inclined to go it alone on a fence. If I foot the bill, the fence is on my property, and there are no restrictions on building the fence, then the fence is mine and I rule the fence. No PITA joint decision making. I decide whether or not climbing vines can grow on the fence. I decide when and how to maintain it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by I-SIG View Post
    You better hope your neighbor hasn't been doing this for 7-10 years (varies by state usually) or he may be able claim proscriptive right since you (or the previous owner) haven't made a big deal about it until now.

    Wes
    What is it with some American laws? The neighbor might actually have some claim rights on YOUR documented property? Who was the bright one that thought that one up? Let's find him and get a rope.

    BTW Wes, great information. I now know where my property ends. Just found all 4 of them. Thanks.
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    Quote Originally Posted by treitz3 View Post
    What is it with some American laws? The neighbor might actually have some claim rights on YOUR documented property? Who was the bright one that thought that one up? Let's find him and get a rope.

    BTW Wes, great information. I now know where my property ends. Just found all 4 of them. Thanks.
    Glad to help. :)

    Georgia's proscriptive rights time is 7 years. Arizona's is 10. Not sure about Canada or any other state.

    Yeah, those proscriptive rights can come in very handy for us utilities when someone wants us to relocate a line just because it's in their way and we cannot locate the easement, or the easement was signed and never recorded. On the other hand, though, the utility cannot modify or upgrade or feed other customers from this easement or your neighbor could not plant new plants, only maintain the existing ones. We can only maintain the line to be sure it meets applicable safety standards.

    I'm not a lawyer or surveyor, so please check what the laws are in your local jurisdiction.

    Wes
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    Quote Originally Posted by treitz3 View Post
    What is it with some American laws? The neighbor might actually have some claim rights on YOUR documented property? Who was the bright one that thought that one up? Let's find him and get a rope.

    BTW Wes, great information. I now know where my property ends. Just found all 4 of them. Thanks.
    Yeah, this truly sucks. There was a case up around Boulder, CO a couple years ago that was getting some press here locally. This guy (a retired judge, no less) started stacking firewood on his neighbor's land (the other guy lived out of state and owned the land to eventually build on and move here). The neighbor wants to start building and finds out the (a$$hat) judge has filed a claim on part of his property, basically making his property unbuildable, as he wouldn't have enough space left to fit his well and septic on the remaining space. I don't know that I ever heard how that worked out, but I do know the judge had gotten a favorable ruling early on in the process.

    edit--> found some more info
    http://www.dailycamera.com/news/Ongo...rsepossession/
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    Quote Originally Posted by seeclear View Post
    Yeah, this truly sucks. There was a case up around Boulder, CO a couple years ago that was getting some press here locally. This guy (a retired judge, no less) started stacking firewood on his neighbor's land (the other guy lived out of state and owned the land to eventually build on and move here). The neighbor wants to start building and finds out the (a$$hat) judge has filed a claim on part of his property, basically making his property unbuildable, as he wouldn't have enough space left to fit his well and septic on the remaining space. I don't know that I ever heard how that worked out, but I do know the judge had gotten a favorable ruling early on in the process.

    edit--> found some more info
    http://www.dailycamera.com/news/Ongo...rsepossession/
    I think there are some limitations with these "squater's rights" type cases and whether or not the current owner is still using the property. Short answer is yes, you can take property this way. Long answer is that the process and the complicated quality of the title poor.

    Locally, we have a big issue with "heir's property" which is a similar situation.

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    I guess after looking at that info further, the whole "unbuildable" part may have been a figment of my imagination, but that doesn't make the whole situation any more palatable.

    People like that make me think they need a quick lead injection in the brainpan.
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    Last week Mr/Moron said we could build it on the property line and he'd pay half. So my dad and I have been marking the line according to the land survey we recevied when we bought the house. We used string and the 3-4-5rule in order to obtain the right angle. He from his bathroom window shouted it's not straight...of course it doesn't look straignt numbskull you're looking at it on an angle..dumba$$. Last night he delivered a letter saying he is out and wants it to be 2"on out property. Fthat, 2" I was about to show him 4" in his face (with my fist....for all you dirty minds out there) I called the city and I was right as long as the fence doesn't pass the line we are golden. So he wants to be a douche...perfect. I told him his downspout on the driveway (our drive ways connect) needs to be moved by the winter or redirected as we get all the ice on our side. He told me to have the builder come level the driveway...Stupid frikin' moron. They will not do that. I said you may just have to move the downspout to the other side of your garage. He said there doesn't seem to be room. I replied...Not our problem now is it!
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    On another note, he told us in his letter that we should follow by-law and obtain a survey. Again, when I called the city they said there is no bylaw stating we mjust do that...this according to his brother who is a lawyer..
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    if your neighbor is that much of a dick, get the spiked survey. worth every penny. the prices posted here seem about right, i wouldnt do 4 corners, just the line that abuts his property

    you'll probably need it.
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    Well, at this point, just make sure that the "ugly side" of the fence is on his side. You may also consider painting it pink......on his side, of course :D. Oh, and what Oskigod said.
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    Make sure to cover yourself everyway possible because you have a dick for a neighbor and if in fact his brother is a lawyer............they will look for any reason to take you to court. Money well spent ahead of putting the fence up.
    "Appreciation of audio is a completely subjective human experience. Measurements can provide a measure of insight, but are no substitute for human judgment. Why are we looking to reduce a subjective experience to objective criteria anyway? The subtleties of music and audio reproduction are for those who appreciate it. Differentiation by numbers is for those who do not".--Nelson Pass

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    Quote Originally Posted by Willow View Post
    On another note, he told us in his letter that we should follow by-law and obtain a survey. Again, when I called the city they said there is no bylaw stating we mjust do that...this according to his brother who is a lawyer..
    By-Law sounds like a home owner's association not a municipality. Municipalities generally regulate things like this via an ordinance. The city likely has no idea what a home owner's association's bylaws say.

    Sounds like you already have a survey anyway, its not like the property lines have moved. I guess he is saying to get a survey crew to put out lines for the fence, which may be worth while anyway. If you need his money for the fence, you will have to negotiate a settlement. As I said before, I would wait until you have the money to pay for the whole thing yourself, run it down the property line, then tell him to go fly a kite. If he thinks the fence is on his side of the line, he can get his own survey done.

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    On a personal note Willow, I feel bad for you. I have not yet had a neighbor that was anything shy of exemplary. Everybody around me has always been a gentleman and gentle lady. I wouldn't really know what I would do if I was faced with your situation, but I do know this. I wouldn't ever worry about keeping the music down on account of them. ;)
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    Quote Originally Posted by polktiger View Post
    . As I said before, I would wait until you have the money to pay for the whole thing yourself, run it down the property line, then tell him to go fly a kite. If he thinks the fence is on his side of the line, he can get his own survey done.
    We have all the money, that's not the issue. We were going to build it on our side of the line to start, then we saw him and got talking, that's when he said he'd be in. So my wife and I talked, and we are going ahead and building it anyway, but on our side. What makes this easy is that we live in a town house so there is already a fence half way down the property line and this is what my dad and I were going by. So we'll start from that fence but on our side and go down the other 18ft to the end fence which is alreadt there as well. We are an end unit so the only one we have to watch out for is the property we share with the other end unit. She's nice all she said was as long as it's on your side I don't care.
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    A Townhouse will typically have bylaws as in many states/cities/counties it's considered a PUD (planned urban development) be sure to check the restrictions and declarations and amendments to the declaration for your property before proceeding. They are a matter of public record filed in the recorders office of the county you live in. The documents should be referenced on your Title Insurance owners or loan policy you received when you purchased the property.

    Townhomes and especially Condominiums have all sorts of regulations/rules an owner needs to follow. If you are in violation of any of them that's grounds for a lawsuit by other owners, neighbor's, etc.

    H9
    Last edited by heiney9; 05-07-2009 at 12:20 PM.
    "Appreciation of audio is a completely subjective human experience. Measurements can provide a measure of insight, but are no substitute for human judgment. Why are we looking to reduce a subjective experience to objective criteria anyway? The subtleties of music and audio reproduction are for those who appreciate it. Differentiation by numbers is for those who do not".--Nelson Pass

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    You also need to make sure you aren't building on an utility easement (or any other type of easement) or water retention area or common area (since you live in a Townhouse). Even if you build on "your" property you are not allowed to build over or across some types of easements. The easements should also be referenced on your Title Insurance owners policy.
    "Appreciation of audio is a completely subjective human experience. Measurements can provide a measure of insight, but are no substitute for human judgment. Why are we looking to reduce a subjective experience to objective criteria anyway? The subtleties of music and audio reproduction are for those who appreciate it. Differentiation by numbers is for those who do not".--Nelson Pass

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    Our TH is a freehold, we have no fees, and no rules but the city bylaws in terms of height and maintenance of the fence. Yes we must put a door for easement again we have no issues there. So in our yeard we'd need 2 doors. One to get in our yard and one for numbnuts to get in his. I have contacted all utilities to come mark so we don't dig on hydro,phone/cable/gas lines.
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    This won't help you, but I do have a related story. My parents wanted to build a fence in between their house and two of the neighbors houses, who they don't like. One neighbor told my mom that "women don't mow lawns in this neighborhood". The other got upset that my parents were mowing at 6:00PM, and that's when they have dinner. "Are you ALWAYS going to MOW at 6:00? We have dinner at 6:00!!!" So they built a nice tall fence on two sides of the lot. MY dad borrowed a metal detector from a friend to find the pins, and had no luck. It turned out that he was looking in the wrong place, and that one of the neighbors had been using a good chunk of my parents property for some time. It was at least 500 square feet of lawn, so they ended up putting the fence 5 feet farther back than they had originally planned. This was after the neighbor had her lawyer contact my parents, so my parents got their attorney involved, yada, yada, yada.

    In the end the fence went on the edge of my parents lot, and their yard got a lot bigger.

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    Quote Originally Posted by heiney9 View Post
    You also need to make sure you aren't building on an utility easement (or any other type of easement) or water retention area or common area (since you live in a Townhouse). Even if you build on "your" property you are not allowed to build over or across some types of easements. The easements should also be referenced on your Title Insurance owners policy.
    I will check our TI policy tonight. We do have a sewer in our back yard but that would be 4ft from the fence and they would have no issue getting to it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by I-SIG View Post
    You better hope your neighbor hasn't been doing this for 7-10 years (varies by state usually) or he may be able claim proscriptive right since you (or the previous owner) haven't made a big deal about it until now.

    Wes
    I am aware of this provision which is why I'm getting a survey done now. I still have to check with the state of Maine to see what the time limits are for us. We have not been in the house 10 years yet. I'm pretty sure Maine laws are below that limit.

    Willow...good luck with everything. It is a pain in the A$$ having to deal with such individuals. Townhouses are tricky...ours is a single family two story on about 1/3 of an acre so it's not that we're lacking land, it's the principle of the matter and the 'decreased value' of the property if we take into consideration that both sides would be 14 x 120' = a loss of 1680 sq. ft. Which is almost enough to build a house on?

    cnh

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    Quote Originally Posted by cnh View Post
    I am aware of this provision which is why I'm getting a survey done now. I still have to check with the state of Maine to see what the time limits are for us. We have not been in the house 10 years yet. I'm pretty sure Maine laws are below that limit.

    Willow...good luck with everything. It is a pain in the A$$ having to deal with such individuals. Townhouses are tricky...ours is a single family two story on about 1/3 of an acre so it's not that we're lacking land, it's the principle of the matter and the 'decreased value' of the property if we take into consideration that both sides would be 14 x 120' = a loss of 1680 sq. ft. Which is almost enough to build a house on?

    cnh
    This is why you get title insurance.

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    Thanks polktiger...

    Actually, I think I may have that. Have to check the files!

    cnh

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    Adverse Possession, all states:

    http://www.lawchek.com/resources/forms/que/advposs.htm

    With the fence, I would build it inside the property line by 1.5 feet, if you ever plan on maintaining it. Otherwise, you would need permission to paint/stain the other side. Have you looked at electrified?
    -Ignorance is strength -

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