Brian's House Building Blog

6 Ways Construction, Land and Property Surveys Are Essential If You Are Building a Shed on Your Land

by Peyton Sanders

If you are planning to build a shed or workshop on your property, you may need to hire a professional to do a construction survey before you start. Here's why you need one, and a look at why you actually may need more than one survey before the process is complete.

1. Figuring Out Boundaries

First and foremost, a property survey can help to ensure that you know where the property lines are and that you put the shed within your property. Depending on the rules in your area, the structure may also have to be set a certain distance from neighbouring properties, and if you need to build partially on your neighbour's land, you may need to obtain an easement.

2. Assessing Elevation Changes

In most cases, lots aren't completely flat, and a construction survey can help you see where you need to level out the land to begin building. For example, if you need to add fill dirt in any areas or excavate high areas to make them level, the surveyor can let you know where you need to do that.

3. Determining Grades for Stormwater Runoff

The land around your shed will need to be graded at least slightly to encourage rainwater to run away from your shed. This is essential if you want to prevent water damage or flooding inside the shed. However, you have to be careful that the grade doesn't force the water to run into the neighbour's yards. Again, the surveyor can help with this task as well.

4. Helping to Prepare Driveways

If you plan to add a driveway in front of your shed, a patio or anything else, the surveyor can also help you prepare for that. You can take care of this in the initial survey, or you can wait until the shed is done and ask the surveyor for information at that point.

5. Creating a Survey for the Building Permit

In some cases, local governments require you to submit a visual plan of your shed along with your building permit. Typically, that requires numerous details about your property. In addition to elevation, placement of the shed on the property and other matters mentioned above, the plan or survey typically also needs to show trees and any other buildings on the property.

6. Checking the Work

Finally, when everything is done, you may need a surveyor to look things over once again. These professionals can ensure that the building process went as planned, and in particular, they can check the grading of the land.