Property Surveys

Do I have to get a survey?  Should I?

The first question above is fairly simple to answer.  A property survey is not required as part of a residential real estate closing transaction in Georgia.  However, the parties can negotiate for one to be done prior to closing. 

For the second question, in typical lawyer form I will answer with, “It depends.”

There are many different reasons to get a survey as part of a home purchase.  The first and foremost is to confirm where the property lines are located and determine if there are any encroachments of structures onto or from neighboring properties or into setbacks.

Another good reason to get a survey is if you plan on making any changes to the structures that would increase the size of the existing improvements.  That way you know if your changes to the property will create any encroachments.

Other reasons are as varied as the properties themselves.  They can include: determining exactly where the house sits in relation to each of the property lines; finding out if a creek is on the property, off the property, or a boundary line of multiple properties; determining whether certain trees are on the property or on that of neighboring properties; the list can go on and on. 

The main reason people list against getting a survey – it costs money.  With so many costs related to buying a home that are required, many people opt not to get a property survey to avoid the additional cost.

As always, at Ganek, PC we have trained and helpful attorneys (including yours truly) and staff to assist you with questions on this or any other topic related to real property purchases in Georgia.v