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What is a Land Surveyor

Webster’s dictionary defines surveying as "a branch of applied mathematics that teaches the art of determining the area of any portion of the earth's surface, the lengths and directions of the bounding lines, and the contour of the surface and of accurately delineating the whole on paper."

Surveying is an “art” as per the above definition. Not only must a surveyor be skilled in the measuring of lands he must also be knowledgeable of the specific laws that govern his profession. He must be able to consider the existing measurements, as compared to the recorded “old” measurements, the existing evidence of possession, the existing monumentation, the parole (verbal testimony) evidence, the case laws and state statues, and then bundle all this together and give an “opinion” of where the property lines are located.

Note that opinion is highlighted. It is so because by state law a surveyor cannot definitively say “this is the property line” without all parties agreeing or state court so determining. He can only give an opinion unless the line is a new line he establishes in a division of property.

Land surveys provide a graphical picture of properties that are to be purchased or developed. The location of physical structures, easements, building restrictions, flood areas, and many other things are field located, and then drawn to scale to provide a relationship to the boundary lines to the location of the improvements.

Whenever individuals or companies attempt to purchase property, the exact location and measurement of boundary lines is critical to “whether or not” the property can be used for their specific needs.