The Legal Description on a Land Survey

Legal Descriptions in Land Surveys

It is important for home buyers to know that all Title Closing Agents in Florida that value their business and reputation understand the importance of the legal description on a land survey in a real estate closing. The legal description is more important in a commercial real estate closing. The legal description is what lets the buyers know exactly what they are buying.  If the legal description is incorrect this can create a nightmare for buyers. By this token surveyors pay more attention to the legal description than to the physical address of the property.

Most property buyers and even most homeowners do not clearly understand the “legal description” and the importance of it.

What’s a legal description?

A legal description on a land survey of real property is a way to note where a particular piece of property is.  All cities, counties in Florida are based on existing township grids and use a combination of letters and numbers to locate the land. learn more at

The Land Survey Expert Says

Roger Morales the Land Surveying Director of Florida Building & Land Surveying says, “A Land Surveyor does not use an address to survey because addresses in many cases repeat themselves and sometime the address can be incorrect.  A legal description tells the surveyor exactly where the property is by referencing specific points and monuments to help them locate the property exact location. Doing a land survey in Florida only going by the address can generate an incorrect survey”.

Why is a legal description important?

The legal description is a unique identifier of properties. In order for a legal description to be valid, it must close; this means the lines describing the start and end must meet. The legal description must be clearly defined. If there are two parcels of property with the same legal description, this will create a big problem and most definitely lawyers and courts will need to get involved.

The Title Agent’s Responsibility

Agent use the legal description to determine which property is to have the title conveyed from seller to buyer. This is why it is important for legal descriptions to be correct so deeds and mortgages are properly recorded.

Agents always order a Land Survey for closings to determine that legal description is correct and the boundaries close properly. This is the best way to avoid confusion and avoid litigation.

Different types of legal descriptions

Examine the legal description of properties, you may start to realize some differences emerge in how they are written. There are three main types you will most likely come across.

The three main types of legal descriptions include

Lot and Block:    Identify the lot, and the block in which that lot is located to find the plat map.

Metes and Bounds:   Uses bearings and distances to measure the circumference of the property described in the legal description.

Fractional: Describes a property by breaking down a section. Certified corner records are used to calculate measurements and figure out lot and distances.

For more information on Land Surveying please contact Florida Building & Land Surveying