They say good fences make good neighbors. But if yours intrudes on your neighbor’s property, a friendly relationship can quickly sour. By obtaining a land survey prior to your next deck or fence installation project, you can prevent the risk of a neighborhood squabble and possible legal action down the road.
According to an article from This Old House Magazine, one retired judge remarked that property cases between neighbors are “among the most bitter – right up there with child custody and divorce disputes.”
Save the headaches and your relationships by making the investment in a professional land survey. On average, the cost of a survey in St. Louis ranges from $300 to $700, but it can save you thousands in tear-down, replacement, and legal costs. And just as important, keep the peace in your neighborhood.
What to Ask Before Your Property and Land Survey
What Is a Property Survey?
A property or land survey performed by a professional surveyor outlines the boundaries of a property and clearly identifies its dimensions. In many cases, a land survey may already be available with your city office, but if not, you can schedule a job with a local engineering or surveying company. Their surveyor will mark your corners and lines if requested and prepare a plan or map of your property, which can be recorded with your local Registry of Deeds.
Why Do I Need a Land Survey before My Fence Installation?
In addition to respecting other people’s property – and your own – a survey can help you identify any utility company easement rights. If your new fence or deck installation limits access to utility maintenance or repairs, it may have to be removed. A property survey may also be required for a city permit or by a bank, real estate agent or buyer if you sell your home.
How Do I Find a Reputable Surveyor?
St. Louis offers a number of highly-qualified Professional Land Surveyors (PLS) who understand the laws, regulations, and codes of your municipality. Ask for recommendations from neighbors or friends or find a company through the Missouri Society of Professional Surveyors. We also recommend researching your selected surveyor on the St. Louis Better Business Bureau website to verify its customer satisfaction ratings.
Missouri statutes limit the surveying practice to surveyors licensed by the Missouri Board for Architects, Professional Engineers, Professional Land Surveyors and Landscape Architects, and all must meet the Missouri Minimum Standards for Property Boundary Surveys.
The last thing you want to do once you install your fence is take it down or move it because of property disputes. If you have a relationship with your neighbors, it may be a wise idea to share the final survey with them before starting your fencing installation so all parties fully understand the border lines and any concerns can be addressed.
Ask the Fencing and Decking Experts
Maintenance-Free Outdoors Solutions, Inc. in St. Louis can help answer your deck and fence installation questions, including land survey concerns. If you have an outdoor project in mind, contact us for a free estimate and to learn about the next steps you can take to help make your installation hassle-free.
Don’t forget to explore our Maintenance-Free Advantage to learn more about what makes us the most trusted fencing and decking company in St. Louis.