Survey Requirements

What is an ALTA/ACSM Land Title Survey?

An ALTA/ACSM Land Title Survey is a boundary survey prepared to a set of minimum standards that have been jointly prepared and adopted by the ALTA/ACSM. The ALTA/ACSM Land Title Survey shows improvements, easements, rights-of-way and other elements impacting your residential property.

Your ALTA/ACSM Land Title Survey will provide the title company with the information required to insure the title and improvements to the high degree that a residential development can require. A Table of optional elements is included in the ALTA/ACSM standards. A careful review of the elements from the optional “Table A” is helpful in delineating a clear scope of the land surveyor’s services.


Requirements for an ALTA/ACSM Land Title Survey

A current title commitment is required before an ALTA/ACSM Land Title Survey can be completed. The surveyor will refer to the title commitment for the legal description of the property and for the legal description of any encumbrances (exceptions). Areas of ownership, improvements and encumbrances will be shown graphically. Provided the survey discloses any encroachments, they should be shown graphically, and a note indicating the nature of the encroachment may also be added.


Certification language, on the ALTA/ACSM Land Title Survey, should include the names of the affected parties, including, as appropriate, the buyer, seller, Title Company and lender. Your surveyor must work in close association with your title insurance attorney, as the surveyor and the title insurance lawyer are relying on each other’s work to create a comprehensive ALTA/ACSM Land Title Survey.

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