What is a SURVEYOR and what do they do?
A SURVEYOR is an individual whose occupation is taking accurate measurements of land areas in order to determine boundaries, elevations and dimensions. Surveyors can also design streets, sanitary sewers and storm sewers within a subdivision. In the State of Indiana, only a Registered Land Surveyor can legally assume the responsibility of a land survey. A survey prepared by an unlicensed individual is completely without value. This Registered Land Surveyor is a highly specialized individual whose education, experience and competence have been rigorously examined; he will also have to be licensed in the State in which he will practice. As a professional their conduct and the quality of their work are subject to a stringent code of ethics.
Famous Surveyors in History: George Washington was the First Registered County Surveyor in America, Benjamin Banneker, Thomas Jefferson, Daniel Boone and Abraham Lincoln.
Types of Surveys
ALTA/ACSM Land Title Survey
This type of survey is made for the purposes of supplying a title company and/or lender with survey and location data necessary for issuing title or mortgage insurance. Specifications of this type of survey include (but are not limited to) determining property lines, location of improvements, identifying all easements, utilities and other conditions affecting the property. Any ALTA Land Survey must meet the “Minimum Standard Detail Requirements for ALTA/ACSM Land Title Surveys as adopted by the American Land Title Association, the American Congress on Mapping and the National Society of Professional Surveyors. ALTA/ACSM Land Title Surveys are commonly performed on commercial properties.
This type of survey establishes the true property corners and property lines of a parcel of land. This type of survey can (1) mark an existing property description, (2) establish new lines relative to existing title lines, (3) determine the line of possession and (4) file a permanent record of where existing title description is located on the ground.
Survey measurements made prior or while construction is in progress to control elevation, horizontal position, dimension and configuration, i.e. stakeout of line and grade for buildings, fences, roads, etc.
This type of survey determines the elevation of various sections of a building or land. The Elevation Certificate is an important administrative tool of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). It is to be used to provide the elevation information necessary to ensure compliance with community floodplain management ordinances, to determine the proper insurance premium rate, and to support a request for a Letter of Map Amendment (LOMA) or a Letter of Map Revision based on fill (LOMA-F).
Location surveys are not boundary surveys. These surveys are typically used by title companies and mortgage lenders to obtain proof that the major improvements on the property are free of encroaching onto neighboring properties and into recorded easements. Fences and other improvements should not be constructed based on a location survey. This is because boundary lines are not determined.
A combination of a boundary and topographical survey are used for the preparation of a site plan when designing improvements or developments or obtaining government building permits.
These types of surveys are needed when one may need to divide an existing parcel of land into two or more parcels.
As Built Surveys physically locate structures and improvements on a parcel of land after construction for mortgage purposes or obtaining a government permit such as an occupancy permit. Depending on the municipality as built elevations may be needed to insure construction was built as proposed.
This survey is for the subdivision of a tract of land into smaller parcels showing monumentation and mathematical survey data on a map, conforming to all local government ordinances.
This type of survey locates natural features, such as, elevations, land contours, trees, streams, etc. This type of survey may be required by a government agency, or may be used by Engineers or Architects for the design of improvements or developments on a site.