When purchasing a property, a pre-purchase Survey Report goes hand in hand with the Pest and Building Inspections.

The purchase of a pre-existing home can mean that over time, boundary fences may be removed, re-instated, changed or effected by buildings erected in subsequent years. A Survey will show encroachments, existing easements, any non-compliance with boundary set backs and will note significant improvements to the property. It will also locate buildings on the land to ensure they comply with set back requirements.

There are several types of surveys that can be obtained however the two most common ones which are conducted for residential purposes are:

  1. Identification survey – which shows the buildings on the land in relation to the boundaries, easements and encroachments within the boundary of the property
  2. Contour Survey – covers the items noted in an identification survey and pegs the boundary and or fence lines to ascertain if the land area being purchased is correct in accordance with the registered plans.

In the case of new properties, during the course of construction, survey pegs can be buried or dislodged from the ground. Prior to fencing being constructed, a Survey enables the accurate re-instatement of the original mark out pegs and the replacement of missing pegs to ensure the corners are identified and boundaries are correctly defined. This should ensure that the construction of boundary fencing will not cause problems with neighbours.

Carrying out a Survey prior to purchase will also confirm the dimensions of the property and land area. You may think you are purchasing a prescribed amount of land which may or may not match with the land area stipulated in the deposit plan, but the Survey report will confirm what area of land is within the boundary of the land.

The surveys will be undertaken by a licensed and registered surveyor who complies with the requirements of the Surveyors Act and a full report will be issued to the prospective purchaser.

Knowing your home is pest free, the building is sound and the boundaries are exactly where you thought, should see you set to enjoy your new home for all the positive reasons you purchased it for.

Dominic Woolrych

Dominic is the CEO of LawPath, dedicating his days to making legal easier, faster and more accessible to businesses. Dominic is a recognised thought-leader in Australian legal disruption, and was recognised as a winner of the 2015 Australian Legal Innovation Index.