Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Do I need an ILC or a Pin Survey?

Many times, the issue of a survey arises in the midst of a contract for purchase of real estate.  Knowing the details of the types of surveys available can take the confusion out of the equation.  

What is an ILC used for?  An ILC or Improvement Location Certificate is usually requested by a Title Insurance Company to remove exceptions from the title policy.  An ILC only guarantees that the major improvements (house and garage) do not encroach upon the property of another.  The ILC is based on my knowledge, as a surveyor, of monuments (property corners) in the area but does not give you any more information.  The ILC doesn't tell you if the neighbor's fence is 8 feet onto your property or if his dog kennel was built over the line.  The ILC doesn't tell your where your property corners are and is the least informative type of survey.  Many surveyors simply don't do ILC's because they lack any real value to the homeowner.  Don't just assume that fences are right and the neighbors just know where the property line is.

What is a Pin Survey?  A Pin Survey is a layman's term for a Land Survey Plat and implies that survey pins, or property corners, will be verified or set.  While a Pin Survey is generally understood as a type of survey that a homeowner needs, the term is vague and never mentioned in Colorado's state statutes.  Use the term Land Survey Plat instead.  

What is included in a Land Survey Plat?  A Land Survey Plat includes field work at the property which results in a drawing.  The field work includes the location of all of the property corners as well as ties to the nearest section corner or other well-established boundary corner.  Generally, it shows the location of all the adjacent properties, identifying the recorded dimensions compared to measurements of recovered field boundary evidence.  Many times, slight differences exist between a recorded plat distance and the actual measured distance between property corners.  This is one of the main responsibilities of the surveyor.  Surveyors are a valuable resource to compare a deed which calls for five acres, and a property with irregular shape.  Does the recorded deed match the field evidence?  Are there any encroachments?  How far does my property extend?

These are important questions a surveyor can answer for you.  While a Land Survey Plat can be an unexpected up-front cost, it gives you the answers to these questions and the confidence and protection to make one of life's biggest purchases.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Floodplain Maps Change?

Yes, FEMA's floodplain maps can and do change: regularly.  Recently, in Boulder County, FEMA updated the set of maps to include some additional areas of flooding concern.  FEMA also removed some areas from the flood-prone areas all together.

Check out the story here:

If you are unsure of the location of your property in relation to the new flood zones, you can search online at:  https://msc.fema.gov/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/FemaWelcomeView?storeId=10001&catalogId=10001&langId=-1

An Elevation Certificate (not an elevation determination) can exclude the need for flood insurance.  At a minimum, an Elevation Certificate is used to determine the flood insurance rate by comparing elevations of the home, garage, basement and adjacent grades to the published Base Flood Elevation.  More information can be found at: http://www.huffmansurveying.com/uploads/2/8/4/1/2841473/elevationcertificate.pdf

Still have questions?  Know someone that needs help navigating the process?  Huffman Surveying can help.  Call 303-421-5263

Monday, February 27, 2012

7 straight months

Thank you for helping to make www.huffmansurveying.com so successful.  Increased traffic to my website for 7 straight months is not an easy task. Quality content and refreshing insight is hard to create after so many years in the surveying business.  And a special thank you to those of you who have left reviews.  Letting others know about your experiences is invaluable.  And don't forget to check out the video page.  Thanks again and lets keep it going in March.