What is a land survey and why is it important to renovators and developers

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land surveyor land survey

When you sign up for Superdraft, you will gain access to a wide range of design and construction professionals. There will be job titles in your project dashboard that you will recognise, and there will be job titles that you will encounter for the first time. For this blog, let’s focus on land survey professionals. Land surveyors are great professionals who possess a wide range of skills ⸺ and you might need them in your project. In that case, here are additional pieces of information about land surveying, plus tips on how to utilise land survey services to your best advantage.

land survey

What is a land survey?

A land survey is one of the most important tasks that need to be done prior to developing or renovating a real estate property. It is the process of measuring and mapping the land or construction site to gather all the crucial information you should know before commencing any work. It is key to establish the property’s key site measurements, levels, and legal boundaries. It also describes the condition of the structures located on the site (if there’s any), as well as the weak spots that need reinforcements. These pieces of information are the baseline for your project and are essential for the next stages of the construction process. The land survey also 

All the data gathered gets consolidated in a land survey report ⸺ a set of drawings that will be used later by architects, building designers, and draftspeople to understand the landscape and create designs that suit the site conditions. Structural engineers will also use the land survey report to plan the building’s structural requirements and ensure the building is safe and is feasible.

LAND SURVEYOR land survey

When do you need a land survey?

Your project requires a land survey when you are: 

  • planning on building a new home
  • significantly renovating an existing property
  • extending an existing property
  • subdividing the land
  • erecting a fence around the property
  • changing the use of land

These are the common situations and instances when you should get a land survey

Who to hire when you need a land survey?

Land surveyors are the professionals who conduct surveys. They’re the first ones to arrive on the construction site. They’re the ones who look through theodolites or those precision optical instruments set on tripods; they use these to measure and map the site.

A land surveyor’s work includes: 

  • recording the results of the survey 
  • determining site measurements and  topographic heights
  • confirming the boundaries of the property
  • describing the site's features
  • investigating the legal descriptions of the land/property
  • verifying data and calculations
  • preparing the sketches, maps and final survey reports
  • giving advice and providing information to design and construction professionals involved in the project
Land surveyor

Land surveyors will be on your speed dial when you decide to develop or renovate a property. Engaging one for your project will save you a lot of headaches and potential delays with your project down the line.  

Here at Superdraft, we can help you organise the services of a land surveyor immediately after getting matched with a suitable designer. All land surveyors within our network are licensed and registered, making it easier for you to find and engage one using the project dashboard. We have established their work in the construction process too, streamlining the work and reducing your stress in the process. 

Interested in using the project dashboard? Sign up or get started with a free quote.

Why engage a licensed surveyor?

Licensed surveyors undertake land surveys and produce land survey reports with legal standing. 

Non-licensed surveyors can still survey your land. However, their report and drawings might not have a legal standing and might not be recognised as evidence when there’s a boundary dispute with your neighbour. 

It is best to engage a licensed land surveyor to survey your property.  

What happens to the land survey information?

The work of a land surveyor is already a part of Superdraft’s streamlined building process. 

After surveying the property, the land survey report and drawings are recorded in your state’s land information system. 

Your chosen building designer gets furnished with a copy of the land survey report to help them design the building. The other consultants that you engage using the project dashboard get a copy of the land survey as well (i.e. landscape designers, structural engineers, etc.).

After completing the working drawings, you can lodge the plans and required documents to your local council. 

Land surveyor

How much does land surveying cost?

Fees for land surveying vary depending on the scope of works. Some factors affect the surveying costs, such as:

  • site location – The cost of land surveys varies depending on the state and area.
  • size of the property – Bigger properties and vast land will have higher surveying charges.
  • shape of the property – Properties that are irregularly shaped or have a lot of curves cost extra to survey and measure.
  • accessibility of the site – Properties with steep terrain or that are located uphill are more expensive to survey and measure. When it is not accessible by car, the rates are higher.
  • vegetation – the more trees and shrubberies on site, the more difficult it is to survey and the higher the fees charged.

The cost of getting your property professionally surveyed is only a small fraction of the total project cost. Given your project costs tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars, getting a land survey for a few hundred dollars is worth it to ensure your project gets set on the right track. 

Get started with your project when you ask for a free quote.

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