The Importance Of Boundaries When You Build Your Own House

by : Gerald Mason

Once you have decided to build your own home on land be sure you know the exact boundaries of the land you purchase.

In the "good old days" when a few rods more or less one way or the other did not make much difference, boundaries were not so important, but, with today's land values, a few inches can be vital.

When your lot is only 50' wide and you want to build a 40' house with 5' clearance on each side, you need all the land you are entitled to.

In newly laid out subdivisions where the stakes are all in place, it is easy to find the lot lines, whereas in places that have been surveyed some years previously so many stakes will be missing that it may be hard to locate the exact corners.

The neighbors are just as anxious to find the correct lot lines as you are.

If a stake is missing, sometimes a little digging in the area where the corner is thought to be will locate the point of the stake. Often if one is careful, the hole where the stake has been can be found by a different color of earth or the decayed remains of part of the stake.

It is always well to have the neighbor concerned help you locate the corner so he can be more assured that the work has been done correctly. If he helps you, he will see the evidence you uncover and will not later be inclined to argue so much about it. If a corner is discovered and you agree that it is correct, by all means get a piece of galvanized pipe three feet or more in length to drive in at exactly the right place as a permanent marker. Drive the pipe clear down to the surface of the ground or below and put a wooden stake by it.

This way it can hardly become lost again. Although sometimes a new survey is necessary, it is better to find the original corners if at all possible, and it is certainly cheaper.

Land that has never been exactly surveyed, or a piece that is being divided, will require a survey to locate the new corners and lot lines, which should be permanently marked so they will never become lost.

Plot Plan

After you are sure that you know the exact boundaries of your land, you can begin to make the plot plan.

With the limited piece of land which you can get, careful planning will be necessary to make sure that it is being used to the best possible advantage.

Find the true north and south, the direction of the prevailing breezes, and of the strong winds, and decide which parts of the lot will be best for outdoor living, where the garage should be placed to shelter this area if shelter is going to be needed, or where the full force of the breeze will be necessary for maximum comfort on hot days.

The local climate and weather conditions will guide one in planning the use of the lot.

Plan where shade trees can best be planted, where the vegetable garden will do the best, and where the roses will best fit the landscape.