ALTA/NSPS Land Title Survey

A survey done to standards established by the American Land Title Association (ALTA), the American Congress on Surveying and Mapping (ACSM) and the National Society of Professional Surveyors (NSPS) in 2005. The survey includes a boundary survey with corners monumented, all improvements shown, including utilities, area of land and buildings computed, and certification is made to specific parties. Other requirements may be included as requested by the client. For Minimum Standard Detail Requirements of ALTA/NSPS Land Title Surveys visit the National Society of Professional Surveyors (NSPS) web site.

As-Built Survey

A survey performed to obtain dimensional data so that constructed improvements may be located and delineated.


A Plat of Annexation is prepared when a property is presently unincorporated, not part of a city, town or village. The territory must be contiguous to the annexing municipality. The new boundary of the annexing municipality as described in the petition for annexation will extend to the far side of any adjacent highway and must include all of every highway within the area to be annexed. The Illinois Legislature has entrusted to the corporate authorities of municipalities the absolute right to determine the boundaries of their communities and the rate at which development will take place. The addition of new land to corporate boundaries is achieved through annexation in accordance with state statutory procedures. The Illinois Municipal Code provides for several means of annexing property to a municipality.

Boundary Survey

A survey which documents the perimeter of a tract or parcel of land by establishing or re-establishing corners, monuments and boundary lines for the purpose of describing the parcel, location fixed improvements on the parcel, dividing the parcel or for platting. Boundary survey could be non-staked or staked depending type of project or requirements.  The difference between non-staked and staked is a staked survey has markers set at the property corners.  Often this is used for closings and construction projects where work will be performed at or new the boundary of the lot.  Most common are fence installation, garage and driveway work.  

Condominium Survey

A survey of new construction or conversion of an existing building delineating the limits of ownership, both horizontal and vertical, for each unit, and those areas of shared ownership within the condominium association.

Construction Layout Survey

A survey in which measurements are made, prior to, and while construction is in progress, to control elevation, configuration, position and dimensions, of structures, and any other improvements.

Control Survey

A survey which provides horizontal or vertical position data for the support or control of subordinate surveys or for mapping.

Legal Description

A Legal Description is a description of real estate that is sufficient to identify it for legal purposes. When preparing a deed, it is important to use the correct legal description. In most situations, the best practice is to use the legal description from the most recent deed to the property, title commitment or other purchase document. It can also be obtained from a county recorder, tax assessor, or similar official.  A new legal description for determination of title or real property rights to any portion or volume of the earth's surface, subsurface, or airspace involving the lengths and directions of boundary lines, area, parts of platted parcels or the contours the earth's surface, subsurface or airspace should be prepared by a Professional Land Surveyor. A Professional Land Surveyor is any person licensed under the laws of the State of Illinois to practice land surveying. This will allow you to ensure that your description is correct and valid.

Mortgage Survey

A basic survey, generally used for residential real estate closings and refinancing purposes, which shows the relationship of buildings, fences and other major structures to the property line.

Plat of Easement

An easement is a legal right given to another person or entity to trespass upon or use land owned by somebody else for a specific limited purpose. For example easements are used for roads, or given to utility companies for the right to bury underground utilities or access utility lines. A property owner usually cannot build on top of an easement. You may also grant an easement to your neighbor if your property is in the way of his access to a road, or to anyone else who needs to have a legal right to access your land.

Plat of Vacation

A Plat of Vacation is prepared to assist a Land Owner in "Vacating" an Easement, Right-of-Way or other encumbrance that may no longer be needed and thereby free up the land for another use. Each Governing Body has different requirements for not only the application for Vacation but the Map itself. We can determine what these requirements are and prepare the Survey and associated map accordingly. Many times a Public Hearing is required which we can attend on your behalf. If you feel that a portion of your property is unfairly impacted by an outdated easement, roadway or other encumbrance, give us a call to discuss your options.

Plat of Subdivision / Resubdivision

This survey takes a large parcel of land and divides it into smaller parcels of land known as "lots". This usually must conform to the review process, guidelines and jurisdiction of a local agency (often the village, town or county board within whose limits the property is located). The surveyor begins with a boundary survey, and may also be called to provide a topographic survey or ALTA survey. Often a civil engineer will be contracted to create grading plans, storm drainage, utility and street plans.
Sometimes a plat of easement for utilities and rights of way must be created. After design and approval of the subdivision plat, the surveyor may also be involved in construction layout.

Quantity Survey

A survey to obtain measurements of quantity, such as earthwork.

Right-of-Way Survey

A survey of a strip or area of land used or proposed to be used for the construction and maintenance of a public way for travel (roadway), railroads, drainage or irrigation canals, and any other public or private right-of-way.

Special Purpose Survey

A survey performed for a purpose other than the purposes detailed in the other types of surveys listed here, such as for obtaining special permits for ad signs, cell towers, etc.

Topographic Survey (Topo)

A survey of the natural features of a land, as well improved areas, that determines the horizontal and vertical relationships, and shown with grades or contours, and all improvements and utilities.