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Non-owner wants survey  

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Daniel Ralph
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A question I ask myself every time this non-owner question is raised. If during the process of this survey, which includes filing a record-of-survey map, I discover something that is not what it appears to be, am I harming the owner in some way that might expose me to legal action. If the deal goes south or perceived value plummets.  

Remember, the survey and its record may exist long after your client leaves the scene. 

I suggest that you check with your E&O carrier about this, and structure your contract in a way that the property owner also acknowledges the conditions by which you work. 

I have provided survey information to a buyer without setting any stakes which at the time I believed absolved me from the record-of-survey requirement but I have been enlightened that that is not the case when I discover something, dare I say like an encroachment, that might affect an adjoiner. 

I believe that it is always in the owners best interest to commission the survey. With it they will attract more buyers and you know what that means.  

 

 

 

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dmyhill
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Almost all ALTA surveys are requested pre-ownership.

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Daniel Ralph
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@dmyhill You mean ALTA/NSPS Land Title Surveys. This is why setting stakes is optional. However that conflicts with our state law which requires disclosure whether its in the form of points on the ground or on paper.  I still require written acknowledgement by the property owner for site access and an understanding that I will be filing a map with the state. 

Imagine: Ring-ring. Hi Mr. property owner this is Mr. I-lease-8k sf-of-office/manufacturing-space-from-you. My private security firm has two land surveyors detained because they were digging a hole under the fence trying to access my propitiatory facility.  They say they are working for Mr. X who got permission from Mrs. Realtor.  Who are these people? Is my rent going up? 

Or this actually happened to a friend of mine who sent his crew to survey, for a buyer a commercial building that was not advertised for sale. While measuring up the building they were caught on camera appearing to be looking into one of the well screened by landscaping windows that belonged to a dentist while he was working. Can I just say the manure hit the fan.    

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John Putnam
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@daniel-ralph

Oregon's ROE requires notification of land owner and occupant.

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dmyhill
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@daniel-ralph

Yes, I (like all my clients) usually shorten "ALTA/NSPS Land Title Survey" to "ALTA survey".

And, no. I would not enter a property without permission. I survey (and set monuments for) properties without permission almost every single day, and I imagine most of us do. Every single time we survey a line, we typically only have right of entry from one party on one side of the line.

And as for renters and what they know...I am guessing I can count on one hand the number of times an owner of a property let the tenants know what I was doing there. Would be nice. They usually are looking to sell, and don't want the tenants to know.

 

 

"However that conflicts with our state law which requires disclosure whether its in the form of points on the ground or on paper."

I would venture that 95% of the ALTA/NSPS Land Title Surveys done in WA result in absolutely no recording at all (regardless of what they find).  

We could probably talk for days about surveyors that do not protect the cadastre and perform all sorts of surveys with no records. I imagine we would come up with the same names. In this day and age, our biggest issues (in my mind) is that we have needless barriers to recording. 99.999% of ALTA's end up as .pdfs, (if they dont start and end there). One little law...

"All ALTA surveys must be forwarded to the DNR as a pdf within 120 days of signing of the survey." 

What is ironic is that the DNR will take any form of any survey at this point, if it was scanned. They want all the records from retired surveyors, they just dont have the resources to scan it all in and catalog it.

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holy cow
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Over 25 years ago a nearby survey firm was hired to survey 30 or 40 properties in a certain town.  None of them were owned by the one paying the bill, which did get paid with no problem.  The entire purpose was to document situations where the landowner was encroaching upon the street right-of-way.  One of the properties belonged to the mayor.  The one paying the bill was in a major battle with the city commissioners who were hammering him for encroaching on what was a drainage easement.  He had plenty of money and enjoyed beating the city at their own game.  Money was not a concern.

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oldpacer
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Half of the Surveys I have done, the client is not the owner. Never had that to be a problem.

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John Putnam
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I'm getting ready (if the state ever gets the contract to me) to do a series of RR crossing surveys along two miles of a state highway.  I will be surveying on ~ 50 private properties that are not flipping the bill directly.  I will send out ROE notification via mail, 10 days prior to beginning of work, to both the owner and occupants.  Pretty simple once you get the owners info off of the tax rolls and it is good advertising too boot.  It is also nice to know up front who is going to be a pain in the *** before I show up.

P.s.  Even though I send out the letter I always knock on a door when on site.

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