How To Find Your Property Line For Free
Just looking at your house and yard may give you the impression that you know exactly where your property limits are. It looks as if the boundary between your property and the one next door, as well as where you mow your lawn, are exactly the same.
Let’s say your property lines are incorrect, and as a result, you discover that your home was built on the wrong lot. If you and a neighbor argue about the position of your property boundary, even the tiniest inaccuracies or inconsistencies between documents can lead to serious problems. How to discover your property lines, and what to do with the information once you have it, are covered here.
Why is it important to know where your property lines are?
Becoming familiar with property borders helps you complete a project or move forward with an agreement more quickly.
To be safe, it’s best to get a fresh survey done when dealing with government agencies. “Imagine you want to build a swimming pool, but you don’t know exactly where the easement is. Would it be possible? Alternatively, you might conduct a fresh survey “The firm’s resident closing attorney in Columbia says this: “Cynthia Durham Blair”.
When you buy a house, your mortgage lender may request that a new survey be undertaken on the property. Even when that’s not the case, your title insurance company will likely recommend a fresh survey as well, so you know whether the neighbor’s garage spills over into the property or if the outdoor kitchen encroaches on a sewage easement, which could be pricey to repair down the line.
You may not be covered by a normal title insurance policy, but a new poll could help you decide if you need to renegotiate with the seller or walk away from the sale entirely. Blair thinks this.
Who Gets to Decide Where the Lines Between Different Properties Should Be Drawn?
A developer, city, county, or state may have ordered your property to be split from your neighbours’ land or even sold a section of a huge plot of land to a developer. An important part of the job of a surveyor is to set the limits and mark them. A survey is used to determine the new property lines after a property has been lawfully divided.
A boundary line agreement, also known as a lot line agreement, includes deeding the land in question and modifying the legal description of both your properties, which you and your neighbour may agree to do yourselves.
What Are the Boundaries of Property?
· Verify Your Actions
Rather of shelling out money for a fresh survey, there are a few free methods for determining your property boundaries. The legal description of your lot, which can be found on your property deed, and a plat map, which you can normally obtain from your local assessor’s office or planning office, are two places where you can find information on the boundaries of your property.
The legal description of a property can be found on the deed, and it can be written in a few different ways. For example, it could simply state the position of the property on the plat map, or it could provide technical data and measurements that let you walk the property lines from a nearby reference point.
· Analyze an Aerial Photo
A plat map depicts the general layout of a community or region as a whole. A typical residential street is lined up with identically sized rectangles on both sides of the street, which represent each individual property.
The parcel number assigned when the lots were scheduled for separate sale will be the identification number assigned to each individual property, and it will follow the surrounding parcel numbers in numerical order.
The parcel number should be noted in your deed, but you can usually discover this information by contacting your local assessor’s office and searching for your home. It’s also possible that your assessor’s office posts a digital image of the plat map on its internet, making it the finest resource for locating your property borders.
· Find Survey Signs
If you don’t have the required training, it might be a challenge to accurately interpret the legal description to define the actual borders of your property. The corners of many properties are marked with hidden markings that might help you keep track of your property lines.
The surveyor will leave flags or stakes at the metal markers, which are usually buried or have a cap coming out of the ground, when conducting a survey. When it comes to newer developments, “if you’re comfortable with a tape measure,” Jonathon Lord, managing partner for Carolina Land Surveying, based in Little River, SC, explains.
The best way to find Survey Pins
Using a metal detector, you may be able to locate the hidden corner markers on your property. Up to 10 inches of the rebar-based metal poles can be buried beneath the ground. Use a metal detector until it detects metal, then dig to be sure you’ve discovered the marker.
Make sure you know where any hidden lines or irrigation systems are before digging for the marker. With a few days’ notice, someone from your local utility company should be able to spray-paint county wires or pipes. The universal phone number for requesting underground utility information is 811.
· Enlist The Services Of A Surveyor
If you’re looking to buy or sell a home, a surveyor can help you determine the exact location of the property’s boundaries, including everything from the house and driveway to a swimming pool or backyard shed.
A surveyor uses the legal description and plat map to accurately estimate your property’s legal limits. For ease of usage, survey pins may be buried and stakes or flags may be used to indicate the locations.
Be wary about relying on Fence or Driveway Boundaries
Don’t use your neighbor’s garden or the fence along their driveway as a reference point. Just because you think your property ends there, it doesn’t necessarily imply it is. Because no survey was conducted before to construction, Stanley believes that the fence was erected in the wrong place.
· Look at the Sidewalk Cuts and the Streetlights.
You can use streetlights or telephone poles near the road to help you determine where your property ends and begins. When pouring concrete for sidewalks, many cities will follow property boundaries by making a cut at the property borders so that each property has the same amount of sidewalk squares as the rest of them.
Even though following your neighbor’s fence is less risky, these directions aren’t always precise. Do not rely solely on the location of a streetlight or sidewalk cracks as a definitive marker of your property line.
Is There a Way to Find Your Property Lines via the Web?
Local assessor’s offices usually have copies of the publicly recorded paperwork you’ll need to locate your property boundaries online. These include the deed, which gives the legal description of your land, as well as the plat map, which shows the location of your property in relation to others in the region.
Method for Resolving Property Line Disputes
Attorneys in the field of real estate may be able to aid you if your neighbour is encroaching on your property and refuses to back off. When time passes without action, the encroachment may become a prescriptive easement, and you may lose the ability to compel your neighbor’s removal of a fence or halt their use of your land altogether.