Land Surveying Services
Our highly trained and experienced staff possess a unique and diverse set of capabilities unmatched in the land surveying industry.
A boundary survey is a process carried out to determine property lines and define the true property corners of a parcel of land described in a deed. Conducted by a Professional Land Surveyor, boundary surveys also indicate the extent of any easements or encroachments and may show any limitations imposed on the property by state or local regulations. Easements may include a utility line easement crossing the subject property to a neighboring property or appurtenant like the right to cross another property for access to a public road. Encroachments, on the other hand, occur when an individual other than the owner uses a piece of the land without the authority to do so. Boundary surveys take all of these property features into account to produce an accurate report.
Boundary surveys involve record and field research, measurements, and computations to establish boundary lines in conformance with the Professional Land Surveyors Act. After a boundary survey is complete, the land surveyor typically creates a drawing. The drawing can include:
- Lot dimensions. The dimensions of a lot come from deeds, subdivision plats, and survey drawings. By indicating boundary lines and corners, they show the exact lines of the property.
- Improvements. Clients may choose to have a boundary survey include any improvements made on the land. Improvements could include houses, sheds, garages, pools, and other permanent changes to the property.
- Easements. The land surveyor can include easements on the drawing if they have a copy of the title commitment and supporting documents.
- Fences. Fences are usually used as a way to let people know where your property is, however they are rarely built directly on the property lines. Fences may be included in the boundary survey drawing, but they should not be assumed to be the outlines of the property.
A topographic survey determines the location of both natural and man-made features, such as buildings, improvements, fences, land contours, trees, streams, etc., of the land along with its elevations. This type of survey may be required by a government agency but it is mostly used by engineers and/or architects for the design of improvements or developments on a site. Sometimes, these surveys are used to design an optimal plan for drainage, ditches, grading and other features. Engineering and other professionals often require Topographic Surveys before their design work can even begin.
A topographic survey provides a client with the exact figures of the size, height, and position of any natural or man-made features on a parcel of land. A topographic map is used to depict terrain relief showing ground elevation, usually through either contour lines or spot elevations. The map represents the horizontal and vertical positions of the features represented. The scale of the topographic survey is determined by the needs of the client; a smaller contour interval may result in more field measurements and a higher cost for the client.
Technological advances have made Topographic mapping much more efficient and accurate. Thanks to advances in survey techniques, instrumentation, design and printing technologies, and the use of aerial photography, drone and satellite data, today it is possible to make 3D topographic digital and interactive maps that show the entirety of a landscape: mountains, rivers, roads, buildings, and more, in amazing detail. This data can then be used by engineers in AutoCAD programs, and the clients themselves can easily see how the topography of the parcel will change after the planned changes.
Bedrock Engineering will provide the targets necessary to perform your aerial mapping projects. Deliverables include a coordinate list along with elevation of the identified panel points according to the desired vertical and horizontal datum. We can provide the services to layout targets (flight panels) and to obtain coordinates and elevations to said points. The results of the Aerial Photo Control Survey is a list of the coordinates, over a photo map or quad map. Upon request we can provide pictures and a Control Point description of key control points to be utilized in ground control for future survey work.
The parcel map process consists of a tentative and final map. The tentative map shows the boundary and topographic information of the area being subdivided. Upon approval of the tentative map, the final parcel map is submitted showing the property boundary resolution, the parcels being subdivided along with any existing or proposed easements and the points that were found or set during the survey.
A Tract Map is one of the processes used to subdivide real property into smaller lots. A tract map subdivides large parcels of land into smaller lots of marketable title. Typically, the tract map is used to create five (5) or more residential lots. The tract map shows the subdivision of land into lots for sale and is recorded in the County Recorder’s Office. The Professional Land Surveyors at Bedrock have years of experience in producing and filing tract maps with local departments.
A tract map is created under the requirements of the Subdivision Map Act. The Subdivision Map Act establishes the time period for a subdivision map to be recorded or expired. A tentative tract map must be reviewed and approved by the local planning department.
A Record of Survey is an official map that sites new and existing monuments in order to demarcate a boundary and also describes the way that boundary was determined. The Record of Survey Map must meet certain technical requirements as defined by code section 8764 of the Business and Professions code of the Professional Land Surveyors Act. The Record of Survey map should show the monuments recovered in the field, the position of those monuments and how they relate to the record deed descriptions or other maps in the area. The Record of Survey map should also show how the Land Surveyor determined where the property boundary is located. In addition, a Record of Survey can include details about any easements that affect the property, and other items may also be shown at the client’s request.
Before commencing a Record of Survey, the client should provide the Land Surveyor with the current deed for the property and in most cases a current preliminary Title Report. The Title Report is required to ensure that the boundaries being surveyed are the current boundaries of the parcel.
When completed, Bedrock will submit the Record of Survey for review to the local County Surveyor’s Office; a fee is usually required. Upon approval, Bedrock will file the Record of Survey Map with your local County Recorder’s Office for permanent recordation. The boundary lines delineated on the Record of Survey are then the generally accepted boundaries for use in design documents and for building new fences.
- Merging up to four (4) adjoining parcels into one single parcel.
- Changing the boundary between up to four (4) adjoining parcels.
- Reconfiguring the shapes of up to four (4) parcels.
Each of the above processes will yield either the same number of parcels as initially, or fewer. The number of parcels cannot be increased by use of a lot line adjustment.
The State of California requires that a licensed Professional Land Surveyor submit the LLA application form along with legal descriptions on behalf of the owner of the property. The experienced professionals at Bedrock Engineering can efficiently execute your lot line adjustment application. Once an LLA application is submitted, it is thoroughly reviewed by planning officials. If approved, an approval letter is issued containing ‘approval conditions’ to be met prior to obtaining a Certificate of Compliance.
Typical approval conditions may include:
- A preliminary title report has to be submitted (not older than 30 days).
- A deed of the newly configured parcels has to be recorded.
- Alter and record any trust deeds which affect the property in order to clearly describe the new configuration.
When all of the approval conditions are met, the department works in conjunction with the title company to synchronize the processing of all the required documents. The Certificate of Compliance is issued to the owner, certifying the legitimacy of the newly configured parcels. After the deeds are recorded, the lots are reconfigured and Certificates of Compliance can be issued. County records, such as the surveyor’s case maps, assessor’s maps, etc., can take several weeks to be updated. A copy of the final approved Certificate of Compliance is mailed to the applicant and their agent. The arrival of this document signifies that the lot line adjustment process is complete. Bedrock’s professionals have years of experience taking clients through this process from start to finish.
In California, the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) requires some projects to submit an environmental study along with the application.
As the name suggests, construction staking involves driving stakes in the ground to map out where planned improvements and buildings will take place. Bedrock’s professionals will position stakes in the ground so that they match up with the project blueprints to the highest degree of accuracy possible. Construction staking is vital to transitioning from the planning and design phase to actual construction work.
Construction staking begins with a Professional Land Surveyor being provided with a set of approved project design plans. Once our surveyor has the plans, they will set reference points or offsets as requested by the contractor. Our professional surveyor uses the project plans to precisely lay out stakes that identify the exact location and dimensions of all planned improvements. Each stake might be used to represent the different elements of the project, including stakes to represent the inner and outer walls of a building, the storm and drainage flow, and concrete features such as driveways, sidewalks, and curbs. Each of these elements has to be accounted for properly within the project plan in order for the surveyor to do their job.
In addition to making sure that construction work is performed accurately according to project designs, construction staking can also help a project manager determine where problems may arise. Identifying these problems at the staking phase can prevent costly delays later down the line. Construction staking allows the project manager to identify potential problems early, so that he or she still has time to go back and adjust the building plan accordingly.
There are two main phases of construction staking which depend on the current status of the project and the actual nature of the work being performed. The first phase is rough grade staking, which simply maps out proposed improvements in relation to the final elevation grade of the site. Rough grade staking is generally used for understanding the rough location and elevation of things like roads, parking lots and building outlines, and usually takes place before a grading contractor comes in to perform their work. If the grading contractor is providing their own machine control through use of GPS, Bedrock’s team can provide the GPS control needed and is available to provide “spot checks” ensuring accuracy.
The second type, finish staking, is much more comprehensive and exact in nature. Finish staking indicates the final placement of the horizontal and vertical location of the proposed improvements, which may include buildings, roads, utility lines, plantings, site grading, etc. Once the finish staking has taken place, the construction team can then “finish” their actual construction work.
In order to achieve desired results, the building owner or general contractor often elects to have anchor bolt surveys performed.
An anchor bolt survey benefits all parties involved, from the foundation contractors to the steel fabricator and erector, enabling them to make changes prior to discovering discrepancies during the installation process that can lead to costly charges and downtime. An anchor bolt survey can be used either to identify the location of anchor bolts or to identify incorrectly installed anchor bolts that must be removed or replaced in order to ensure timely and accurate structural steel erection.
Anchor bolt placement is a crucial component in the erection of structural steel, and Bedrock Engineering’s professional surveyors and technicians have the expertise and experience for this crucial task. At Bedrock, we understand the precision required and the checks necessary to accurately layout the anchor bolt network for structures of any size or configuration.
An Elevation Certificate is an administrative tool of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) used for the following purposes:
- To provide elevation information necessary to ensure compliance with local, community floodplain management ordinances.
- To determine the proper insurance premium rate.
- To support a request for a Letter of Map Amendment (LOMA) or Letter of Map Revision (LOMR), which removes the structure in question from the flood map.
The Professional Land Surveyors at Bedrock Engineering have years of experience in producing elevation certificates and filing LOMA/LOMR applications. Elevation certificates measure the elevations around the house and property and compares them to the floodplain elevations determined by FEMA. This process helps an insurance estimator or city/county official determine the actual flood risk to your home and property.
If the Elevation Certificate determines that although a property is located in a designated FEMA Flood Hazard Zone, portions of the property and/or structure may be above the floodplain elevation, a LOMA (Letter of Map Amendment) Application can be submitted to FEMA to request that the property and/or structure be removed from the flood hazard zone. This would remove or reduce the requirement to obtain flood insurance for the property.
Bedrock can assist you in filing the FEMA Letter of Map Amendment (LOMA), stating the property or building is correctly shown outside the Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) and, therefore, the mandatory flood insurance requirement does not apply. FEMA does not charge a fee to process LOMAs.
Because a LOMA officially amends the effective NFIP map, it is a public record that the community must maintain. Any LOMA should be noted on the community’s master flood map and filed by panel number in an accessible location. Bedrock will ensure all documents are properly filed to legally show where your property resides outside the flood hazard area.
In an easement, designated people are granted the right to specific types of access on another’s property. An easement gives one person the right to use the property of another; it is the use of one party’s lands for the benefit of adjoining lands. Easements can be granted to another person, such as a neighbor, or to an entity, such as an electric and gas utility. Easements can be related to such features as water supply systems, sanitary sewer systems, storm water management, “dry” utilities, roads, fire access, trails and native growth protection areas. Dedications typically relate to land that will be used for public roads.
A property easement is generally written and recorded with the local Recorder’s office. The documented easement will show up when a title search is conducted and it stays there indefinitely, unless both parties agree to remove it.
A Right of Way refers to the right one party has over another party’s land; a right of way allows an individual to enter your property and use it as a passage. A right-of-way is typically a strip of land that is granted, through an easement or other mechanism, for transportation purposes, such as for a driveway, trail, rail line, or highway.
The Professional Land Surveyors at Bedrock Engineering can provide you with accurate, detailed legal property descriptions to assist you in the execution of your project. Legal descriptions may be ordered when there are issues of property line encroachments, roadway vacations, parking rights, ingress/egress, or light, air, and view restrictions. When conducting a lot line adjustment, property descriptions will also be necessary for the purpose of making new parcel descriptions.
Through a gift deed, ownership of property — of either monetary or sentimental value — may be transferred to a relative or close friend without charge or consideration. A gift deed is valid only if it is given out of love and affection, without any consideration in return by one family member to another. When real estate is given as a gift, it must be properly registered with the appropriate authority. A gift deed is not a method to avoid estate taxes.
A gift deed may be either revocable or irrevocable. When a gift is revocable, the donor holds the legal document until and only until they decide to give it to the giftee. They are not legally obligated to give the gift and may rescind it at any time, for any reason. In an irrevocable gift, the person who has received the gift becomes its legal owner as soon as the donor physically delivers the gift deed document to the recipient. The gift cannot ever be revoked nor can the donor later ask for financial compensation.
Leveling can be for one of two purposes: (1) to find the elevations of given points with respect to a given or assumed datum; this is necessary in order to enable a project to be designed, or (2) to establish points at a given or assumed datum; this is required in the setting out of all kinds of engineering works. Levelling deals with measurements in a vertical plane. In order to best assess subsidence issues, precise leveling is used. It is the most accurate way to determine elevations over long distances.
In leveling, the relative or absolute elevations of different objects or points on the earth’s surface are determined. This is achieved by taking measurements in the vertical plane. Using survey-grade equipment, extremely accurate elevations can be measured even across long distances.
The success of projects from major buildings, highways, dams, canals, water supply and sanitary schemes, all depend upon accurate determinations of elevations. The execution of civil engineering works such as these require the combination of experience and technical knowledge that Bedrock’s professionals have. At Bedrock, our Professional Land Surveyors will perform leveling surveys to the utmost accuracy for the successful design and execution of your project.
At Bedrock, our Professional Land Surveyors perform hydrographic surveys to measure the depth and bottom configuration of water bodies. Bedrock has the equipment, software and expertise in house to accomplish these demanding surveys. A Hydrographic Survey measures the depth of a body of water such as a lake, river, canal or pool, in order to define the bottom surface. Sometimes called a Bathymetric Survey, this type of survey also maps the underwater features of the body of water.
Bathymetric surveys may be used for many different types of research including flood inundation, contour of streams and reservoirs, leakage, scour and stabilization, water-quality studies, dam removal, biological and spill, and storage and fill in reservoirs and ponds.
Collected data may be used for:
- Developing hydrographic models for floodplain analysis
- Helping marina owners plan for dredging and dock maintenance activities
- Assisting riparian land-owners with dock and bulkhead permit applications
- Helping irrigation districts and canal companies assess capacity and design new facilities