5 Tips For Hiring A Quality Land Surveyor
Land surveys are an essential step towards determining the true legal boundaries of your property, and can also dictate its resale value and your options, in terms of extensions or renovations. Banks and insurance companies will also often insist on evidence of a land survey when it comes to things like borrowing money or extending a home insurance policy. Therefore, it’s crucial to contract a high-quality land surveyor to ensure they get the job done right.
Here are 5 simple tips for sorting out the good from the bad, in the land surveying industry.
1. Check that they’re licensed and insured
Obtaining the relevant license to conduct land surveying work is a legal obligation throughout Australia. Nonetheless, you should never assume a company is adequately licensed just because they’re required to be by law.
Each state or territory has their own governing body that grants such licenses, and that also keeps an online registry of licensed businesses which is available to the general public. Check directly with the corresponding registry (rather than just taking the word of the land surveying business) to ensure they’re appropriately certified.
The same goes for insurance. Although work safety insurance is required by law, some fly-by-night operators choose to flaunt the regulations to expand their bottom line. Ask the company about their insurance policy, and stick with more reputable operators. An adequate insurance policy should even protect you should the surveyors make a mistake that affects you financially.
2. Assess Their Experience And Qualifications
A reputable and qualified land survey company would much more likely to do a better job. The more established professionals may charge slightly more upfront, but shoddy work from a rookie operator could cost you dearly in the long run.
Insist on a company with at least a decade of experience in the field, preferably working with a diverse client base, on numerous different project types. At the very least, the surveyor should have experience working with the same specific kind of project – for example, a residential boundary survey. A holistic approach and a commitment to ongoing training are other tell-tale signs of a well-run surveying business.
3. Assess Their Equipment
The best surveyors will insist on using cutting edge technology, whether it be their Computer Aided Drafting (CAD), Global Positioning Systems (GPS), Laser Scanning or the Robotic Survey Systems. Furthermore, they’ll only use high-quality monumentation tools and survey monuments. Although various different types exist such as flarable pipe and sectional rod monuments, the best option usually depends on the job in question.
It might not be possible to become a surveying expert overnight, but a little basic knowledge about the equipment involved could help you distinguish the good operators from the bad.
4. Get A Few Quotes
Once you’ve identified a few different reputable, qualified, and certified surveyors, it’s time to work out what they charge.
Remember that the cost of surveying work varies significantly depending on the size of the terrain, the season, the research involved, and even the weather. Therefore, it’s essential that you only compare “apples to apples” when looking at quotes.
5. Ensure All the Paperwork is in Order
It’s standard practice for surveying companies to ask for 50% of the payment upfront. However, the entire agreement and all costings must be clearly explained in a contract, which must be signed by both parties.
You should also receive an invoice that includes payment deadlines, payment methods, and any other relevant details.
Choosing a suitable land surveyor may seem daunting at first. However, with a little research, it won’t be too difficult to find a local operator that’s right for your needs. If you can find a certified and experienced company that uses state-of-the-art equipment and charges a reasonable rate, then it’ll all be worth it in the end.