Chartered Building Surveyors
A career within the land and building surveying sector can be quite lucrative. As a surveyor your role will be to oversee the development and design of land and new buildings. You will also be called in to maintain and restore existing developments. The role of a Land and building surveyor means you will need to be able to cover a wide range of properties and developments at various stages of construction and development.
To embark on a career in land and building surveying, you will need to undertake a four year degree program in surveying technology, or on site surveying. Prior to starting the degree, or during the degree, you will normally choose if you wish to work within the land surveying sector, or the building surveying sector. The degree program will cover areas such as applied mathematics, physics, science, computing, engineering, management and law. You will most likely also cover areas such as surveying and information systems, cadastral studies, and geodesy. You will also be expected to attend field excursions and survey camps, where you will record data using a variety of devices. On your return from the excursions and camps, you will be required to accurately log the data into a computer software program. The computer can then map out the area in two and three dimensions. Following graduation you will generally be expected to undertake an internship program, in order to gain more experience, after which you can apply for better paid positions.
The role of a building surveyor
As a building surveyor you will be expected to interpret building laws, and check if building plans comply with local building regulations. Your job role will include interacting with architects, builders (including cranetechs) and engineers, in order to ensure buildings are designed and constructed within building legislation law and technical codes. You should be able to accurately diagnose any possible design issues, or problematic construction materials or techniques, such as cranes (including truck mounted & marine cranes). You will also be expected to survey the building at various stages during its development, from its foundation stage through to its completion.
How to Survey Land YourselfChartered Building Surveyors
Building surveys come in lots of different shapes and sizes and as you would expect come with different price tags, reflecting the amount of work and detail involved as well as the qualifications of the person undertaking the survey. This article focuses on the types of survey, rather than who undertakes them although the latter is equally, if not more important if it is to be money well spent.
Surveys tend to fall into four main types, but many practitioners will tailor their reports to suit their own style of writing and incorporate what they feel are the most important aspects. The exception to this is the RICS Homebuyer report that has pre-determined headings and a set format, although even that can be embellished a little if the writer so chooses. In my view the most important aspect of a survey is; does it give the level of information and detail that a purchaser is expecting and looking for? Some will and some won't!
Specific Survey - Sometimes, a previous 'bad' experience or personal knowledge of the type of property or locality will give a buyer concern over one or more particular elements of the building. In these circumstances a report can be submitted which deals specifically with that/those parts.
I would advise that if you are planning on appointing a surveyor to undertake a survey on your behalf, you discuss your requirements in detail with them to ensure that you are offered the survey that best suits your needs.
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.