Considering Land Surveys for Home Fence Needs

land surveys fence needs

There are numerous reasons why land surveys might be used within residential properties, and one of the most common and recognizable for many people is with regard to fencing needs. Whether you’re looking to define your property boundaries, mark certain property areas or carry out any other key purpose with your fencing, use of land surveys – both past and present – is a common approach.

At Diamond Land Surveying, we’re here to offer boundary surveying and numerous other residential land surveying solutions in Salt Lake City and other parts of Utah. Here are some of the basics on how to consider past land surveys in these situations (and the possible issues that come with them), plus when new surveys are necessary and what to be thinking about while arranging these.

land surveys fence needs

Finding Original Property Lines

In some cases, you will be able to find the original property lines on your land without any need to source past property surveys. If a prior survey has been conducted, the land surveyor would have used rebar posts to plant into the ground or metal pins drilled into the curb or sidewalk – these should be present at each intersecting corner (with a “surveyor’s corner” monument) and these marks can usually be used to define the property lines.

Beware that in some cases, especially if it’s been a long time since the survey, these may be covered with dirt or vegetation, which could make it difficult to spot them. If you’re having trouble locating these pins, you may need to arrange for a surveyor to come and review the situation – especially if you’re concerned about potential property boundary disputes in future.

Sourcing Past Land Surveys

If you are unable to locate the original boundaries yourself, you may need to look into obtaining past land surveys. These can often be sourced through county records – especially if they have been recorded after the survey was conducted.

If these are not available, then it’s possible that a direct contact may need to be made with any former owner of the property. In some cases, the former owner may have obtained the survey themselves and held onto it for their records, in which case this would be a useful resource to source.

Possible Issues With Past Land Surveys

Now, it’s vital to be aware that just because you’re able to source a prior land survey does not necessarily mean you’ll simply be able to use that for your fence installation 100% of the time. There can be a few issues with these kinds of past surveys, including:

  • Age: In some situations, past surveys may be quite old – meaning that the boundaries could have been shifted due to various factors. This may require an updated survey to be conducted and verified.
  • Inaccuracies: In some cases, the surveyor may not have been as accurate or reliable when conducting their surveying – meaning that there could be inaccuracies in the results. This is why you should always ensure that any past land surveys you use are from a reliable source.
  • Older equipment: Many prior surveys may have been conducted with older equipment (for example, a transit and chain rather than a more modern GPS system). This can make the results less accurate and could result in discrepancies.
  • Changing structures or lines: Over a period of years, it’s possible that structures or lines may have changed – such as a road being built, an irrigation ditch being added, etc. This could affect the original results and mean that it’s necessary to perform a new survey to verify any changes.

Neighbor Considerations

Another key area to consider when determining whether you need new land surveys for a fence installation is what your neighbors are doing. If they also have a new fence being installed, it’s possible they may be getting a survey conducted at the same time – and this could help in terms of accuracy and cost-effectiveness (since you can get multiple lines surveyed in one go).

Similarly, if there has been any dispute over property boundaries in the past, it may be wise to arrange for a survey to ensure that there is no confusion. This could help provide a clear definition of property lines and save any potential disputes down the line.

What to Expect During a New Land Survey

If you do determine that a new land survey is necessary for your fence installation, there are a few key things that you can expect to happen. The exact technology and equipment used for your project will depend on the specific situation, but some general elements of the surveying process include things like sourcing original surveys, researching historical ownership records and deeds, searching for existing property boundary markers, using modern equipment to take measurements, and creating a digital representation of the surveyed area.

Ultimately, it’s important to perform a thorough review of the situation before determining whether you need new land surveys for your fence installation project. While some projects may be able to use prior land surveys, in other cases this is not always possible – in which case arranging for a new survey to be conducted may be the best option. Doing so will help provide accurate results and ensure that your fence is installed correctly, helping you to avoid any potential disputes or issues down the line.

At Diamond Land Surveying, we strive to provide our clients with the best results and services possible. Whether you need a new land survey for a fence installation or any other purpose, our experienced team is here to help. Contact us today to learn more about how we can assist with your needs in Salt Lake City, or any other part of Utah.