You may be thinking about upgrading your property security by installing a solid fence around the perimeter. Unfortunately, if you don't clearly know where your property boundaries are, you might find yourself with an unhappy neighbor and an expensive job to move the fence. Before you risk crossing your fence onto your neighbor's property, here's what you should know about providing a land survey to your fence installation company.
Why Does the Survey Matter for Fence Installation?
In many areas, there are guidelines that restrict the placement of a fence to a certain distance away from the defined property line. If your fence crosses over onto your neighbor's land, you may face a legal battle. You can avoid a potential court case if you identify the property lines ahead of time and make sure that the fence stays on your side.
Can You Use a Survey That's Already Been Done?
Most of the time, if the property has already been surveyed, you'll find markers that clearly show the boundary lines. These markers are usually easy to identify if you know what you're looking for.
Sometimes, there are flags tied to trees along the property line. In other cases, the surveyors will use ribbons or tape that are brightly colored and reflective. Request a copy of the survey report from your city clerk, then walk the boundaries of your property to ensure that everything is clearly tagged for the fence installers to see. Sometimes the colors of the ribbons or tape will vary for certain land features and boundary markers, so make sure that you get a copy of the legend with the report.
Some land survey companies use underground markers instead for aesthetic purposes. Underground markers are usually metal rods or bars that are pounded into the ground along the property boundary. Sometimes they are only used to mark the corners of the property, but they can also be used along the entire perimeter of the property. A metal detector is a great way to identify the location of each post. Run the metal detector along the boundary lines defined by the report and add markers above ground for the fence installers.
What If a Property Survey Wasn't Done?
If you haven't had a survey done yet, you might be able to save the cost by checking with each of your neighbors. If all of your neighbors have marked their land from surveys, you may be able to use their markers as a way to determine where your property boundaries are. This is only effective if the neighbors on every side have marked their land.
You can also check with the local city clerk to see if there's a land registry on file with boundary lines indicated. Sometimes the property sale records include maps that define the boundaries of the property as part of the documentation.
If you are uncertain about any of these options or you want more confidence in the markers for your fence installation contractor, hire a land survey company like Community Sciences Corporation to complete a new survey for you. That way, you can have the boundaries marked clearly with new markers that are weather resistant and easy to identify.
With so many different options, you're sure to be able to find a way to mark your property boundaries and ensure a successful sale. Consider having the contractor from the fence installation company onsite when the land survey contractors arrive so that there's no question about where the property lines are. This will protect you from the potential legal hazards of encroaching on someone else's land with your new fence.