The Importance of Land Surveys when Buying your Colorado Dream Ranch

By: Christy Belton

The survey exception in the title insurance policy does not give coverage against encroachments, easements and boundary disputes. An approved survey not only can remove that exception and protect the owner and lender from claims, but it just makes sense to know what land is being purchased.  Land in this area costs too much to not know exactly what is changing hands.

A boundary survey will establish true corners and boundary lines on a land parcel.  They can sometimes show easement lines if requested.

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An ALTA (American Land Title Association) survey is much more comprehensive. It can cost several thousand dollars, and can take weeks to complete.  Property lines, improvement locations, easements, utilities, fences and ditches are shown as well as other conditions affecting the property.

In addition to having a survey done when purchasing Colorado ranches for sale, you might also consider one for the following: When selling land and you do not clearly know where the property line is on the ground; when land is not clearly defined by a plat, legal description, or older survey; when building a fence, building, shed, or anything close to an unknown property line; when clearing or doing construction in “wetland” areas in the jurisdiction of the Corps of Engineers; and to settle a boundary dispute.

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Two surveyors measuring the same line may end up with different results, although they should be close.  Measurements are always subject to error, but more importantly, measurements are based on found evidence. Surveys performed at different times may not have the same evidence available.  A more recent survey may use recent monuments set since a prior survey and the monuments used for the prior survey may not even be available.  Surveyors also rely on their own records as evidence; hence the reason surveying has been termed an art rather than a science.

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