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Why is land surveying so expensive? Land Surveying Questions

Why is Land Surveying so expensive?

Since Bennett’s founding we have seen ourselves as stewards and ambassadors of the profession. We are committed to answering important questions like:

  • Why is land surveying so expensive?

  • What do land surveyors do?

  • Should I get a land survey before I buy a property?

Here is the first in our series on frequently asked land surveying questions (FALSQ:

Why is land surveying so expensive?

It is important to remember that land surveying is an investment in your peace of mind in the smooth advancement of your project. You run a risk of spiraling costs and delays by not working with a reputable land surveying professional first. The assessment is really one of value vs “expensive/not expensive”. That being said, when land surveyors are estimating cost to perform a survey two main factors are considered:

A professional land surveyor in BC and elsewhere will estimate the amount of time it will take to complete a project. Factors that are commonly considered are:

    1. Size of the property being surveyed – all things being equal, certainly the larger the property the more time it will take to get the necessary dimensions.
    2. Amount of vegetation coverage / rugged or uneven nature of the property. Even if a lot is smaller (see point above) heavy tree cover or especially rugged terrain will make surveying more difficult and time consuming. Professional land surveying crews may have to use equipment to clear obstacles and effort to access all corners of the property.
    3. Age of the area – historic survey pins (survey evidence) can be harder to find on older lots at times being overgrown or buried. Wide open new construction areas are typically easier / cheaper to survey than areas that are 50+ years old.
    4. Corners vs. lines – if you require just the corners to be marked, it will be less expensive than marking points along the property line.
    5. Proximity of the property being surveyed to the company’s location – travel time may become a factor.

These would be the hard costs associated with the project such as:

    1. Research, survey plans and documents relating to charges on properties from the Land Titles Office. 
    2. Equipment costs if specialty equipment is needed.
    3. Software licensing costs.
    4. Travel and fuel costs as references above.
    5. Professional liability insurance
    6. 2 person field teams

why is land surveying so expensive
Marker pins (survey evidence) may be overgrown, buried or missing entirely.

Professional Expertise
As with many things professional land surveying has become more complicated with time.

    1. Use of sophisticated equipment like drones.
    2. Understanding of local planning bylaws.
    3. Highly trained staff for projects involving Easements, Strata Planning or Air Space Plans.
    4. Legal liability for inaccurate surveys.

Costs can vary from company to company based on these factors. Bennett is committed to providing accurate estimates and being communicative and transparent when costs are foreseen to rise. Bennett is trusted by many of BC’s largest and most reputable developers. We also have dedicated staff for residential surveying projects. Contact us for a free quote.

Contact Bennett Land Surveying  – Call: 604-980-4868

Start a project with us.