What is the Purpose of a Perimeter Survey?

Did you ever wonder what the distance was around your property or piece of land? A perimeter survey can determine the measurement around your property and is conducted by a professional surveyor to ensure that an accurate report is conducted and recorded.

What Exactly is a Perimeter Survey?

If you didn’t know before, a perimeter survey is a specific type of survey that measures the distance along the boundary lines of your land. A perimeter survey is important to find out the exact location of your property lines and you can also discover if there is any encroachments on your property. Although it might sound like a simple survey where you just need to measure the length of your boundary, in reality it includes many other assumptions and calculations. While the surveyors use this approach, they have to analyze, calculate and measure a wide range of factors which includes but not limits to:

  • Boundary monumentation

  • Boundary encroachments

  • Unresolved conflicts with existing property deeds & maps

  • Lines of occupation: fences, walls, hedges, yards, and natural elements

Tools & Techniques

Professional land surveyors use different tools & techniques in perimeter surveys that include both conventional and modern technologies. However, most of the surveyors prefer to use the conventional surveying tools & techniques that include bearing and distance or compass and tape. Although they are considered primitive tools, they still remain an important assett to a land surveyor.


gps-surveyAhough there are some minor adjustments and improvements in the compass and tape, they still follow the same age-old concept and technique. In addition to them, surveyors will use GPS technology in a perimeter survey which is one of the greatest advancements in the surveying industry. Both of these two techniques, if carried out by a professional, can result in a detailed analysis of your property with a small margin of error. Typically, a surveyor would prefer to use the bearing and distance technique when working over a smaller distance and use GPS technology on larger distances.

Key Takeaway:

  • A perimeter survey is a specific type of property survey that maps and measures a distance along the property boundary

  • Professional land surveyors use either Bearing and Distance (compass and tape) or GPS technology for a perimeter survey.

    Image Courtesy of: tdkresidential.co.uk