Fri | Jun 2, 2023

A Matter of Land | Clarifying surveying matters (Pt 1)

Published:Friday | January 11, 2019 | 12:00 AM
Craig Francis

This week, we respond to a reader who has numerous issues which she wants clarity on.

Good day, Mr Francis,

I would like get some clarity on the following:

1. What is the difference between a 'surveyor's identification report opening of boundaries' and a 'survey diagram'?

2. What is a reserve road?

3. If one buys a property and has a road leading in from the main as the entrance to the property and is now being told that it is a reserved road, what does that mean?

4. How much does a land surveyor normally charge to survey a 30-acre property?



Thanks, Melissa, for your questions. Let me clarify them for you as requested.

Your first question is a really good one as many persons who deal with land surveyors do not know the difference.

Surveyors Identification Reports are, as Anthony Prendergast put it, "The physical boundary is checked on (the) ground against the registered boundary on (the) plan and the results stated in the report.

Also, the restrictive covenants (if any) endorsed on the registered title are checked. If there are any breaches, these are stated.

If there are breaches, the information stated in the report is used to modify the covenants in court. Therefore, to use a medical term, a Surveyor's Identification Report is like an X-ray of what exists in regard to a property.

The opening of the boundaries means that the land surveyor, in accordance with the title, plan, or diagram for a property, re-establishes or identifies the boundary lines and clears them of vegetation.

A survey diagram is a plan that is prepared after a com-missioned land surveyor conducts a cadastral (boundary) survey on a property. It is then submitted to the National Land Agency for checking and approval. The final approved plan is called a diagram.

So the Surveyor's Identifi-cation Report speaks to the 'health' of the property and reports what is found, while the opening of the boundary refers to a surveyor identifying the boundary lines for clearing of all shrub, trees and vegetation.

That's all we have space for this week. I will respond to the other questions in next week's edition.

Keep sending your questions and comments and let's continue to explore A Matter of Land.

Until next time, traverse well.

- Craig Francis is a commissioned land surveyor and managing director of Precision Surveying Services Ltd. He can be contacted for questions or queries at or Precision Surveying Services.