Finding your property line along its length?


  #1  
Old 08-03-23, 12:53 PM
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Finding your property line along its length?

our property is 450' from front to back. our next door neighbor sold their house and they surveyer marked the property corners.

I'd like to know where the property line is along the length from front to back. But it's hilly and the back half of the yard is woody. The front half has brambles along parts of the property line.

Any advice how to 'connect those 2 points' along that length?

If it was clear along the line, just pull a string between them. But again, trees and brambles block the view. Invariably, I'll go on the wrong side of a tree, etc.

Thoughts, other than hire a surveyor? : )

Thanks!
 
  #2  
Old 08-03-23, 01:04 PM
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Hopefully you can see from maker to marker. If not, find a tree or bush directly between them. Get a of PVC 12-18" in length. Stand at one marker and sight the other one. Everything in sight is along the property line, referred to as the line of sight.
 
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Old 08-03-23, 01:31 PM
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The only surefire way to know exactly where the line's at is to have a surveyor come and put in pegs. I have a similar deal with my mountain property, there are more than a few pegs that you can't get a line of sight to the next one. I look in the general direction [my survey plat helps me with the general direction] and pick a tree or whatever and then go to the next peg and look back toward that tree/marker. I have one boundary that I have to do that twice between pegs. Gives me a rough idea where the line is although not good enough to install a fence.
 
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Old 08-03-23, 02:19 PM
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Tony P. thanks. but even with a really tall pipe at 1 corner point, it can't be seen from the other because of trees and the topography.

marksr Thanks, sounds like my issue but on a larger scale. Just wondering if there's some obvious way that I am missing. I guess not. I do have a 30 year old drawing of our property from our survey back then. It kinda shows where the property line is relative to our driveway edge. That helps for the first 100 feet of the property.... (if they drew the driveway accurately relative to the property line)


 
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Old 08-03-23, 02:24 PM
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If you can find an aerial photo (Google earth or town database?) and can locate the corners on it, the line between them can give you some idea of where the line is when you cannot see between the markers on the ground. Some property lines superimposed on aerial views (our assessing dept. does that) are not completely accurate due to parallax in their photos.
 
  #6  
Old 08-03-23, 02:36 PM
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Looking at the drawing... I know the distance from the house corner to the property line. But not that angle relative to driveway...

Again, not looking for anything legally binding : ) Just more of an academic question / looking to see if there's a DUH! process that I don't know.

In the northeast US - (I'm in NJ), anyone know ballpark for a surveyor to come out and put in some stakes along a line? $1K? $2K? for those kinds of numbers, I'll skip it.

are there apps for the phone that would let you walk along a lat / long? - is this common? The property line is supposedly along a lat / long ?! BUt not to too many digits. N 85į yy' zz"
 
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Old 08-03-23, 02:37 PM
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2john02458 cute! Hadn't thought of that! But the trees block the end point. Even in the winter pic I found.
 
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Old 08-03-23, 02:39 PM
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I am in the same boat. All but one of my property markers are either overgrown, now underground and in the case of one marker, paved over by the town.

I have the plot map, I know where the markers are supposed to be but getting at them is near impossible. I decided to pay a surveyor to locate a single point on my property map. He sent someone out and wanted $2000 to find marker.

 
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Old 08-03-23, 02:43 PM
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@cwbuff yeah, that's what I was thinking / not going that route.

And funny - the corner in the woods - previous owners but rocks around the post, etc. There's a couple / few posts in there.... ie different surveys came up off by a few inches for where the corner is. Not a big deal, just interesting that it's not exactly reproducable.

And then I think of things like the arch in St. Louis or any big construction project. the accuracy that's needed over much bigger distances!!! I'm amazed things get built!
 
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Old 08-03-23, 03:31 PM
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Here is an old link. Seems like it would be of some help.

Shooting a line between property boundary pins - DoItYourself.com Community Forums
 
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Old 08-03-23, 04:46 PM
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Google Earth might not be a bad idea if you have the surveyors locations.
 
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Old 08-03-23, 06:30 PM
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Use your smart phone's compass. It'll give you the exact coordinates where you stand and even your elevation.

 
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Old 08-03-23, 07:20 PM
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I'd also consider a laser pointer at night. Even better on a hazy evening. It won't be perfectly precise, but you can probably stand at one point and shoot towards the other point, and have someone help direct it left/right.
Green lasers are typically higher power and easier to see at night.
 
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Old 08-03-23, 07:35 PM
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It is not clear to me if pipes/pegs are in the ground.......?
 
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Old 08-03-23, 07:50 PM
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It is not clear to me if pipes/pegs are in the ground.......?
The "I.P. FND' on the survey map drawing stands for 'Iron Pipe/Iron Pin Found'.



Don't feel alone - I'm still trying to figure out where N 85į yy' zz" is located in the state of New Jersey...


OP: "In the northeast US - (I'm in NJ)"
 
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Old 08-04-23, 08:17 AM
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When I had to identify the property line through the back yard which is about 600' long of dense woods, got the family and about 6 of the kids friends to line up from the know corners and then by line of site adjusted and established straight lines from the ends to the center. Might be off a bit but it was sufficient to confirm if some century oaks were on my property or not!
 
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Old 08-04-23, 10:01 AM
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I think thatís a compass direction from the iron pipe in degrees-minutes-seconds.

North [85 degrees and yy minutes and zz seconds] from the pipe - describes a line.


 
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Old 08-04-23, 07:06 PM
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So what we did in CA when looking for iron pipe markers......was to call a fence builder. He had a fancy metal detector and found what I had been seeking for weeks. I paid him one hour.
 
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Old 08-04-23, 07:37 PM
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More of a joke or tease but.........

Just go out and put down some pins & flags about 2 or 3 ft on the neighbors side of the property. When he discovers it, and he begins to question it, tell him if he's got a problem with it to hire a surveyor and prove it.

When y'all get the paperwork, just shrug & say........ Opps, my mistake.

Now you know where the legal line is it didn't cost you a thing.
 
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Old 08-05-23, 11:47 AM
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N 85į yy' zz"
The E or W portion of the bearing is missing.
 
  #21  
Old 08-05-23, 05:12 PM
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It looks like the OP in post #6 truncated information above ďN85ÖĒ in the upper left of picture, and in the discussion just substituted yyí and zzĒ for real numbers, just to get the general point across that there were too many digits. Thatís what I assumed, but maybe thatís a bad assumption.

But it also needs an East or West designator as you say. I also assumed that was on the original diagram, but also left off because the OP was more concerned about the number of digits. Maybe also bad assumption.

Would be good to see all of what is really on the original diagram.




 
  #22  
Old 08-06-23, 01:30 PM
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Actually, I realized it's not lat / long. Here in NJ, it would be N74, not 85 as noted. And the other side yard line has the same numbers 85 23 54, BUT I;m noticing the left side is N85 23 54 W and S85 23 54 E

And same for the horizontal / street line and back line - S00 16 24E for the front and N00 16 24 W for the back line.

So those are angles? of the corners?!

I am trying an app on the phone landglide Supposedly a free 7 day trial, but can't seem to get it activated. helps you find the property lines supposedly. But my experience with GPS / geocaching on a phone, there's loads of room for error. wonder what the tolerance will be +/- 10 ft is not much help vs. what I already know.



 
  #23  
Old 08-06-23, 04:03 PM
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It sounds like those are just the directions of the 4 lines around the property with respect to North. I think that would be true North. There should be other information that tells you how long those lines are and where they start. Maybe you have pipes at all 4 corners.

The N85 23 54 W line would be parallel to S85 23 54 E line and those 2 lines would form 2 opposite sides of the property. Likewise, the N00 16 24 W line would be parallel to the S00 16 24E line and those 2 lines would form the other 2 sides of the property.

Maybe if you look carefully, maybe each line has a length marked on it somewhere. If that parallel line explanation doesnít fit then something else is going on there.

 
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Old 08-06-23, 09:10 PM
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zoesdad you nailed that part of it. Thanks!

But still - I was just talking to the new neighbor about which bush is mine / theirs. I have a general idea in the front of the house. but then farther it goes into brambles / trees / woods, the harder to discern where the propertly line is.

I tried that landglide app. It seems nice, but it is relying on the phone's GPS for accuracy. I have an iphone 11. Not sure if newer Iphones have better GPSs, but from geocaching, I know - gps accuracy is at best 10 - 20' circle. I can do better on my property with just my gut. And in the woods / tree cover, it's a bigger cirlce / lower accuracy.
 
  #25  
Old 08-07-23, 11:01 AM
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Ed -

Looks like LandGlide uses tax parcel maps. If I understand you give it a parcel id and it gets the information recorded for the parcel and gives you a rough idea of where the property lines are. But as you say it is not accurate enough. In that article below it states that you would still need a surveyor. That agrees with the other descriptions of the app I saw. Bummer!

My property is 357í deep and I found the 4 corners from the deed. Each corner was marked with a surveyor metal pipe in the ground. If I understand it is illegal to remove those markers. I think in Massachusetts you can go to jail Ė not sure though.

There are some trees and bushes down the line on one side of my property, and I was lucky enough to be able to run a string and found there were no trees or bushes right on the line itself -but close.

I found the law gets a little complicated here in PA. if I understand correctly. If a tree is on your neighborís side, but a branch hangs over on your side, you can cut the branch, but if you harm the tree, you are liable. If your neighbor wants to prune that branch, he can only do it if you allow him permission to come onto your property.

There are trees on both sides close to the line here. But my neighbor and I both kind of ignore the line and lets things stand the way they are.

It seems to me you are in kind of a catch-22. Maybe some of the folks more legally savvy here might weigh in. But in order to correctly identify the entire line, you would have to clear some growth. But you are only allowed to clear the growth, if itís on your side of the line. But to identify the line you have to clear the growth first. Canít win.

Plus, I guess you donít want to clear growth anyway, since that is probably what you are worried about to begin with Ė you donít want a new neighbor removing trees and bushes, especially if they are yours. Hopefully your new neighbor will just let things lie they way they are. Maybe a good assumption would be that they arenít that worried about where the line is, because they donít know either. Seems that way to me I guess, but could be wrong.

If the things the other guys suggested donít help, I donít see any way around it, it just seems like you would have to bite the bullet and get a survey for good accuracy. Bummer!

Can You Skip the Surveyor and Find Your Property Lines With LandGlide? (makeuseof.com)

 
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Old 08-07-23, 11:14 AM
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You might want to look into 'Adverse Possession' which can be claimed after 10 years for single family homes on parcels less than 0.5 acres in the state of PA . And for the OP, 30 Years in his state of NJ.
 
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Old 08-07-23, 12:21 PM
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There is no fence there, just bushes and trees down the property line. I donít see how adverse possession would be a factor here Ė unless Iím missing something.




 
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Old 08-07-23, 02:40 PM
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I don’t see how adverse possession would be a factor here – unless I’m missing something.
I was referring to your comment (quoted below) about the law in PA and a neighbor's tree, etc.

I found the law gets a little complicated here in PA. if I understand correctly. If a tree is on your neighbor’s side, but a branch hangs over on your side, you can cut the branch, but if you harm the tree, you are liable. If your neighbor wants to prune that branch, he can only do it if you allow him permission to come onto your property.

There are trees on both sides close to the line here. But my neighbor and I both kind of ignore the line and lets things stand the way they are.
 
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Old 08-07-23, 03:07 PM
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Adverse possession doesnít have anything to do with bushes and trees.
 
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Old 08-07-23, 05:07 PM
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Adverse possession doesn’t have anything to do with bushes and trees.
It's a claim for the land - the ground on which trees and bushes may grow...or not grow.

Actually, if someone occupies or tends to land (e.g. farming) that is owned by someone else, that person may claim 'adverse possession' and acquire valid title to it as long as certain requirements are met, like being in possession for a sufficient period of time as required by that state in which the land is located. The 'adverse possession' claim may include the routine of tree-trimming (e.g. tending to orchard trees), clearing brush (e.g. bushes) or some arrangement or degree of usage of the land. The claim would detail how the claimant/petitioner used or tended to or protected/preserved/harbored the land of which he is making the claim.

I'm sure many compelling claims have been made for pieces of land over the many decades that state's law honored 'adverse possession' statutes, and no doubt many of the claims only had 'bushes and trees" on it!
 

Last edited by Kooter; 08-07-23 at 05:48 PM. Reason: orthography
  #31  
Old 08-07-23, 08:17 PM
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if someone occupies or tends to land (e.g. farming) that is owned by someone else,
No one talked about occupancy on this thread. There is no question at all of any occupancy on my property and I didnít allude to that at all Ė and it seems totally irrelevant to the OPís situation also. Sure Ė obviously - of course, if you are awarded land, you would get the trees on it. Thatís not a big revelation. But I think you missed one of the turns somewhere on this thread.

The following is about Pennsylvania Law.

Possession

For a trespasser to successfully claim adverse possession, they must prove their possession of the property was actual, continuous, exclusive, visible, notorious, distinct, and hostile.

Actual, Visible, Notorious, and Exclusive

Actual possession varies according to the circumstances,[vi] but essentially the trespasser must treat the land as if it were their own in a way that is ďconsistent with the nature of the property.Ē[vii] For example, actual possession may be established by cultivating the land,[viii] making improvements, maintaining a fenced-in lawn,[ix] doing yardwork, planting and tending to a garden, building a shed, paying property taxes,[x] or other activities signaling to a reasonable onlooker that the land is being treated by the trespasser as her own.
 
  #32  
Old 08-09-23, 10:07 PM
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Try a fence builder who has a pin/pipe detector.......
 
 

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