Land Surveys for Selling Property - Chastain & Associates

Selling property? Besides buyers, Chastain land surveying services have been helping sellers with their transactions since 1995. Here are a few frequently asked questions.

Q: Isn't it the buyer's responsibility to have property surveyed?
Not necessarily. Often that is the case, so that the buyer has a contractual agreement and liability chain to the surveyor, but everything in a sales contract is "negotiable", so don't be alarmed if you are asked to share all or part of the closing expenses.
Q: Should I be concerned about the flood plain on my property?
Absolutely, take this very seriously. Recent changes in flood maps, as well as the 2012 Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act have drastically changed the flood plain implications for property owners, particularly new ones (buyers). We recommend that you determine if structures on your property are identified as being in a high risk flood zone, even if you think they are totally outside of it. If they do show to be in a high risk zone, we recommend that you start the process to file a Letter of Map Amendment with FEMA to have it removed. This can take months, so the sooner you get started, the better your chances are of not having a deal killed by a buyer's mandatory flood insurance.
Q: What can a surveyor do to make my property more marketable?
There are several things that can be done. The most visible would be to have property lines and corners marked for prospective buyers to see. A new survey is also frequently listed among a property's attributes. We can also plot your property on aerial photography, provide detailed directions, GPS coordinates, etc. Another thing that some sellers ask us to do is to find the negatives to their property, so that they can evaluate them and decide if and how to address them before a buyer gets into a contract negotiation and let it come up then.
Q: What if the buyer has a survey done and comes up with less acreage?
If the acreage that you are relying on is based on a deed estimate or an old survey, this is not uncommon. As far as contractual matters are concerned, if the sale is a lump price, the acreage may not matter. But if the land is being sold on a per acre price, an adjustment will be necessary. If you have concerns that the buyer's survey is inaccurate, it would be up to you to engage another surveyor to check the buyer's survey.