How much does a land surveyor cost?

by | Aug 29, 2023 | Advice & inspiration, Hiring tradespeople

Land surveying plays an essential role in the building process and it is something you’ll need to factor into your budget. But how much can you expect to pay for land surveying services? Let’s do a complete rundown of both the types of land surveys you may need and how much you can expect to see.

What role does a land surveyor have in your new home build?

Land surveying services play an important role in the building process as it is the key way to gather information about your block. This information is vital when it comes to the stability of your home and the overall design.

  • Establishing the boundaries of your property
  • Investigating the structural integrity of your land
  • Provide a map of your land
  • Help with subdividing land
  • Determine the slope of your land

How much does a land surveyor cost in Australia?

The cost of land surveying services varies from job to job. This is because no two blocks of land are quite the same and therefore every job will have its unique elements the surveyor will need to navigate. Construction surveying services can include a variety of specific surveys depending on what you’re trying to discover.

What is a boundary Survey?

A boundary survey determines the correct property lines of a plot of land. This requires the surveyor to research the title of the land and survey information on the land.

What are the property boundary survey costs?

A boundary survey will cost around $155 per hour, however, this can vary. Boundary surveys can take up to two weeks to complete, so chat with your potential surveyor about both hourly cost and timeframe to get a better price estimate.

What is a topographic survey?

A topographic survey is designed to identify various natural and man-made features on the property, including:

  • Existing buildings
  • Any easements
  • Trees
  • Adjoining neighbouring properties
  • Visible street furniture

How much does a topographic survey cost?

The cost of topographic surveys will vary a lot depending on the layout and variations of your block. Expect to pay anywhere between $350-10,500 for a detailed survey. A larger property with plenty of variations will add to the price.

What are contour surveys?

Contour surveys are conducted to determine the slopes and contours of your land. This is important for designing the foundation of your home.

How much does a contour survey cost?

A contour survey is likely to cost around $1,000, but this will vary depending on both the size of your land and the complexity of the terrain.

What is a subdivision survey?

A subdivision survey is the process of subdividing one property into multiple. This can be done to create multiple blocks of land to sell, rent or build on. Along with surveying costs, there will be expenses with council fees, approvals and infrastructure fees.

How much does a subdivision survey cost?

A subdivision survey can cost between $2,000-10,000, depending on the amount of work required.

What is a geological survey?

A geological study is performed to study the geological structure beneath the surface of the block of land. This information will be then used to create maps or a model that will help with the construction of the home.

How much does a geological survey cost?

Geological surveys are likely to cost around $450, however, this price can be higher if there are any complications with the property.

Location Survey

Technology is used to find points on the property property and measure distances between them. This information will help draw maps with accurate property lines and legal boundaries. A variety of tools are used including robotic total stations, surveying software, GPS receivers, radios and more

The cost of a location survey will range between $300-$950 for the average property. Prices vary depending on the size and shape of the block of the surveyed land.

Fence survey

Fence surveys are used to help design a fence to surround your property. A fence survey will cost around $400. This price will increase if you’re surveying a larger property.

What impacts the cost of hiring a land surveyor?

As mentioned earlier, it can be not easy to give an exact estimate on how much a land survey is as every project is slightly different. Some of the key factors that will influence the price of your land survey include the following:

  • Land Size: As you can imagine, the larger a property is, the longer it will take to survey. Therefore, don’t be surprised to see this added to your final bill.
  • Site location: Where your site is located can increase the price of the survey. For example, if you live in a rural area that the surveyor has to travel an hour to reach, the travel costs will be a factor in your bill. The time spent reaching you may mean they have to turn down another job which could also influence the price.
  • Dimensions and shape of your land: If your block has a unique or unusual shape, it may be more complicated to survey and require additional tools and research. Square properties tend to be cheaper to study than quadrilateral properties.
  • Season and weather conditions: Poor weather conditions are the bane of any building project, and surveying services are no exception. Severe weather and the results can make land more difficult to survey which, you guessed it, means a higher price for you.
  • Travel and research expenses: Any travel or study your surveyor needs to perform to complete the job will add to the expenses. More complex assignments may require your surveyor to research or consult other experts to complete the survey.

What are the different land surveyor fee structures?

Land surveyors tend to have two main fee structures, either charging a fixed fee or by the hour. It’s important to ask how your surveying services charge before hiring them. If they charge by the hour, be sure they give you an estimate of how long the job might take.

Our tips for hiring a land surveyor and minimising costs

  • Find out which services you actually need before agreeing to anything. Some surveys will be essential for your land and some that won’t.
  • Talk to multiple surveying companies and compare land survey costs and other land surveying fees.
  • Find reviews or learn more about each company’s reputation before hiring them. Remember that not all reviews are reliable, so use your best judgment. This applies to both positive and negative reviews.
  • Speak to a building broker like Buildi for impartial, expert advice throughout your building journey.

Need help choosing a land surveyor? Get free advice from an experienced builder broker


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