Land surveying is a type of field work that involves collecting and measuring the features of a given piece of land. The purpose of surveying is to accurately document the boundaries of a given area of land and to create a detailed representation of the physical features that exist on the land. This includes measuring and mapping the physical features of a piece of land in order to establish property boundaries, creating maps, planning and designing construction projects, and more. 

It is often used to plan the development of a piece of land or to provide a record of existing boundaries and land rights for taxation and legal purposes. By using advanced survey tools, such as a GPS or laser equipment, land surveyors can quickly and accurately document and map the land. Let’s dive into what the process looks like. 


Land surveying measurement is the process of accurately measuring and determining the physical characteristics of a parcel of land. This helps determine the size, shape, boundaries, elevation, and other features of the land. Land surveyors use various instruments and techniques to perform these measurements, including total stations, levels, and more.

The measurements taken during land surveying can be used for a variety of purposes, such as ensuring compliance with local zoning laws and regulations. Accurate land surveying measurements are important for ensuring that development projects are built in the right location, that property lines are respected, and that the environment is protected.

Property Boundaries

Property boundaries are the lines that separate one property from another. In land surveying, property boundaries are determined using a variety of methods, including measurements of distances and angles between known landmarks, historical maps and property records, and other evidence such as fences or walls.

There are several types of property boundaries that may be used in land surveying:

  • Physical boundaries: These are boundaries that are established by physical features such as fences, walls, or natural landmarks like rivers or streams. Physical boundaries may not always accurately represent legal property boundaries.
  • Legal boundaries: These are boundaries that are established by law and defined in legal documents such as deeds or land titles. Legal boundaries may not always match physical boundaries, and it is the responsibility of the surveyor to determine the legal boundaries of a property.
  • Adverse Possession: Adverse possession is a legal concept that allows a person to claim ownership of a property if they have used and maintained it openly and continuously for a certain period of time. In some cases, adverse possession can affect property boundaries.
  • Easements: Easements are legal agreements that allow one person to use another person’s property for a specific purpose, such as accessing a utility line. Easements can affect property boundaries and must be taken into account when surveying land.

It is important to accurately determine property boundaries in land surveying to avoid disputes and ensure that construction and development projects are located in the correct position.

Mapping Specific Locations

Surveyors create detailed maps and drawings of the land based on their measurements and observations. These maps typically include information about the location and dimensions of property boundaries, as well as any physical features such as buildings, roads, waterways, and topographical features like hills or valleys.

In addition to showing the location of property boundaries, land survey maps may also include other important information, such as elevation data, soil types, and vegetation cover. These details can be useful for planning and designing construction projects, assessing potential environmental impacts, and managing natural resources.

Surveyors typically use specialized computer software to create digital maps and drawings of the land, which can be easily shared and modified as needed. They may also create hardcopy maps and drawings for use in legal or regulatory proceedings, or for archival purposes.

Legal Considerations

When conducting land surveying, there are several legal considerations that should be taken into account. First and foremost, it’s important to be aware of any existing local and state regulations that pertain to land surveying. It is essential to be aware of the jurisdiction’s boundary description and all boundary marker locations. Furthermore, any laws that govern boundaries and ownership must be respected, such as any established common-law boundary decisions and formal surveying acts or rulings.

In addition to regulations and boundary information, all relevant information that could affect land surveying, such as land titles and any surrounding developments, should be considered. Finally, it’s important to keep records of the entire process and communicate any findings with the applicable property owners or authorized third parties. Following all legal considerations when land surveying will help ensure the accuracy and efficiency of the project.

Contact Chastain-Skillman Today

Surveying land is a specialized field that requires extensive training and experience. In many jurisdictions, surveyors must be licensed and registered to practice, and they must adhere to strict ethical and professional standards.

Contact us today for any of your land surveying needs.

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About Chastain-Skillman

CS is a leading engineering firm headquartered in Lakeland, FL, with satellite offices in Orlando, FL, and Nashville, TN. Established in Lakeland in 1950, our company provides Civil Engineering, Water/Wastewater Engineering, Land Surveying, Geology/Hydrogeology, and Construction Management/Inspection services.

At CS, we treasure our role in creating thriving communities, always respecting the impact our work has on their foundations and their futures. For more information, visit


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