Surveying Your Land - 10 Tips on Hiring a Professional Land Surveyor
In this modern world, people are busy in their 24/7 jobs and find no time to construct a new home for themselves. For this, they rely on already constructed houses that may be either new or old. In such cases, people generally do not have an idea of the house they are going to buy. They just go along with the marketing tactics of the middle man or the owner. They should get the house surveyed by a professional building surveyor. Building surveys is an important process to be undergone while buying a new house. If not, it would result in costly repairs in future and leaves us to regret later.
Building surveys are a way of understanding the condition of a building. It is advisable for listed buildings, old buildings more that are over 75 years old and buildings that are reconstructed or remodelled.
Surveys includes all types of buildings like commercial, domestic and industrial. Specific tools are utilised for the survey of the buildings. These are just a few: Theodolite is a tool that sits on a tripod and measures angle's horizontally and vertically. Many theodolites have a computer and software attached to it so that the information is sent right to the office. Tape measure is carried to measure the distances. Stadia rod is used to measure and requires a man to hold it in place. Cinometer is used to measure angles, elevation, slope and incline of a hillside.
Thus, building surveys can bring to light the faults in the construction or remodelling of the building.
Surveying can cover many areas such as land, minerals, construction projects, antiques, houses and others. Hence, it is a profession, which encompasses many areas. When a person is interested to work as a chartered surveyor, he must possess some skills in common. Chartered surveyors can easily find employment in several fields.
Chartered building surveyors are those who offer advice on the construction and design of new buildings and the remodeling and redesign of old buildings. They may also be required to assess safety and health requirements and be engaged in the improvement and maintenance of buildings.
There are other kinds of surveyors also such as residential property surveyors who offer advice on development and sale of houses or apartments. Construction surveyors are engaged in the development of construction projects such as new houses or dams. Management and assessment of costs pertaining to building projects comes under the work area of the Quantity surveyors.
Environmental surveyors have to make sure that the specifications for construction and design does not affect the environment. They can also work towards making improvements towards energy conservation. Those who suggest ways and means to make optimal use of machinery and plants in an industry are called the technical surveyors. Land ready for redevelopment is reported after assessment by the geomatics or land surveyors. Mining and Minerals surveyors offer valuation services related to the development of mines, waste management sites, quarries etc.
As far as employers in the private sector are concerned, jobs are provided by property companies, construction companies, consultancies, large firms, estate agencies, housing associations, etc. Universities, hospital trusts, government departments and local authorities are some of the employers in the public sector. You can find jobs advertised in the website of Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), Property Week, Surveyor, Estates Gazette etc.
You must become a member of the RICS, a professional body in order to become a chartered surveyor. For this, you must have a degree approved by the RICS. Once a person completes the RICS-accredited course, he/she has to become fully qualified by gaining more experience.
Chartered building surveyors have excellent prospects for career advancement. Surveyors can with a few years of experience progress to the senior managerial level. Surveyors can also become self-employed. There are excellent work opportunities for surveyors abroad.
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There are many advantages to being a building surveyor. One must be dedicated, determined and responsible to be in a profession such as this one. The work load is high but the pay makes up for it. This job is for an individual that's not afraid of hard work and loves a challenge.
A building surveyor can be described as one who provides professional advice on the construction of a building and various aspects of the property. They give advice on the laws, cost and the regulations of that building. It is also the building surveyors job to monitor projects that are being constructed and to be sure to stay within the given budget. Also, they must plan and estimate the amount of work needed to be done per day to meet the allotted deadline. They must also ensure that the necessary documents as well as paperwork is completed on time. Another responsibility is to hire and manage the contractors that they feel is capable of getting the job completed on time.
When looking to become a building surveyor good eyesight is a must. Also, good physical health is required and as with any job, good interpersonal skills. Building surveyors are not only responsible for overseeing buildings being constructed but for the buildings that's already been built as well. They must analyze a structure and determine what repairs need to be made in order for that building to remain in good standing with the law.
As a building surveyor you will also be provided with benefits. These benefits include insurance which is a must in this profession. Also, you must be employed with a company for a certain period of time in or to be eligible for paid vacations. A 401k plan is available but not required. If a building surveyor would prefer to have one, than this option is available.
This is a good profession to look into. The pay is great and the job is interesting because of the new challenges that arise everyday and the deadline that must be met. However, there is a lot of responsibility and dedication required for this job. So if you are one that likes to work hard and push to reach goals and deadlines, then this is definitely the job for you. However, if you feel the responsibility can eventually be too much for you then maybe something less challenging should be considered.
In the nearly 25 years that I've been a land surveyor I've been contacted by thousands of property owners looking to have their land surveyed. All too often they make their decisions based on only one factor, price; which often leads to dissatisfaction with their choice and sometimes a less than quality survey, too. The following 10 tips are developed from my experience and will help you in hiring the right professional land surveyor to survey your land.
1. Is the person you're hiring licensed to perform land surveying services?
- Professional Land Surveyors are required to be licensed by the state they work or offer services in. If you hire someone to survey your land that isn't qualified to legally survey in the state that you live, you're throwing away your money and that person is breaking the law. If you have any doubts contact your states licensing board to confirm that this individual is a licensed professional land surveyor.
2. Does this person have Professional Liability Insurance?
- This is insurance, like doctors' malpractice insurance, which protects you if the professional land surveyor makes a mistake. Land surveyors are no different than any other human being and they can make mistakes in their professional capacities. Would you see a doctor, or have surgery performed, knowing that the doctor or surgeon didn't have malpractice insurance?
3. Does this person or firm have Workers Compensation Insurance?
- Each state is different, and not all states may require this: but who is responsible if the person you hire, or their employees, get hurt or injured while surveying on your land? If this type of insurance is required in your state make sure that the person or firm you hire to survey your land has this insurance and is in compliance with your state law.
- The reason you hire a land surveyor to survey your land is to determine the extents, or outline, of the property. If the property corners are not marked how will you know this? And, if it is not marked with permanent markers, likely to last for many years, what good is it? You should never accept wooden stakes as property markers, unless they are temporary due to some mitigating factor like imminent land grading or nearby construction activity, plastic flagging dangling from a branch, or vague explanations, when the survey is supposedly completed, such as "near the Pole", "near the mailbox", or "under the shrub". Suitable permanent markers include Plastic Stakes, Iron Rods, Iron Pipes, Rebar, Railroad Spikes, Magnetic Nails and other nails in paved areas, Drilled Holes in boulders or stone walls, Concrete and Granite Bounds.
10. Will they walk the property with you?
- In the course of conducting a survey your land surveyor will set many independent survey control markers and will find many existing monuments; not all of these may be at your property corners. It can be confusing at first. So, make sure that the professional land surveyor is willing to walk your property with you to identify the actual monuments and markers that mark your property corners.
In conclusion, the above 10 Tips On Hiring A Professional Land Surveyor to survey your land is so you can find an experienced professional land surveyor that will give you value and quality. Your land is too valuable not to hire the best professional land surveyor and have the best relationship with this professional, right from the start.