Lot Line Surveys

Lot Lines only to build a Fence, Landscape, or make Improvements.


Property lines, or lot lines, are the defined points where one person’s land ends and the neighboring lands begin. You can find them on your property deed, or on the survey you received when you bought your home and should be used to determine where to legally place structures, such as a fence, storage buildings, or garage. It you don’t have a recent survey, it can be well worth the initial cost to have a licensed surveyor perform one to avoid a more costly mistake. Owners of existing homes too often rely on imprecise anecdotal evidence, such as what their real estate agent might have told them which has led to owners thinking they have more property than they actually have. A few find out they are missing a huge chunk of property because their neighbor installed a fence where the old fence was located without getting accurate lot lines marked only to find the old fence was a few feet from the legal boundary. One such customer, after hiring a licensed surveyor, learned his lot extended 35 feet beyond the back fence and up to 6 feet beyond the side fences.
While a boundary assessment is not always a requirement, it can provide valuable information regarding pricing if you plan to buy extended title insurance. Additionally, it’s helpful for buyers to be aware of details regarding local regulation. For example, it may not be legal to build a fence dividing your yard from a neighbor’s along the adjoining boundary line. Or, the driveway may encroach on a neighbor’s space. A neighbor may have built a deck that extends over the borderline. There have also been cases where developers didn’t follow local laws, building hundreds of new homes too close together, placing HVAC units illegally in the required setback.
Even if there’s already a fence in place, that’s no guarantee that you’re building on your property line. If you build over the line, you may have to remove the fence later so don’t trust fences or estimates. Before you buy or build, hire a land surveyor to make sure your property is properly measured. It saves trouble today, tomorrow and down the road.