You need to consider some crucial factors if you’re thinking of building or expanding on your property. One such factor is lot size which is a vital consideration in almost every aspect of construction. It determines the type of construction you can undertake and defines property boundaries and the value of your land, among other things.
You might be clueless about what lot size is, or you may have some idea concerning it; whatever category you belong to, this is a guide on what you need to know about lot sizes and how to figure out your home lot size. Let’s get started!
1. Use Google Maps
Technological advancements have made this method pretty easy; you can use Google maps and GPS as you walk the perimeter. Your movements are tracked and give you precise dimensions.
This method is way easier than making use of a measuring tape, as the phone does the measuring for you as you walk.
Here are instructions for how to do it.
2. Use Online Services
Another interesting option you can adopt is the use of online services like DaftLogic. This online service makes use of Google maps to find the location of your lot.
You’ll be able to discover how enormous your lot is by using this strategy. This could be accomplished by utilizing the same functionality as Google maps and finding out the distance between where you are and where you’re headed.
You need to find your lot through the address, and then you can get the measurement through the use of pictures.
3. Measure Your Lot Manually
This method is probably the most time-consuming as it entails manually measuring your lot by walking its perimeter. It’s possible to go the old-fashioned way by going around your property with a measuring tape; however, it takes a lot of time and is prone to errors that affect the overall math.
If you insist on this method, be sure that you’re meticulous all the way.
Here are directions on how to use a phone app to do it:
4. Go Through Your Property Deed
Usually, one of the most straightforward ways to find out your lot size is by going through your property deed. Typically, property deeds come with descriptions of the boundaries of properties and the dimensions of their lots.
Using online calculators, you can calculate the total surface area of your lot, which helps you come up with a single number that helps determine the building best suited for your space.
You must be sure that additions and any other changes haven’t been made to the size of the lot since it was documented.
5. Check Your Property Plat Map
The property plat map is another straightforward way of figuring out your lot size. This is usually given at the property closing. Typically, this map contains a plan of your lot and some information about it. It’s important to note that this information includes boundary line dimensions, the layout of the lot, and the tax parcel identification number.
6. Go Through Your Boundary Survey Plan
More often than not, having a professional survey carried out on your property means a boundary survey has also been done. The result of this survey is usually a boundary survey plan which reveals the layout of your lot, including the area and the lot line dimensions.
7. Get a Subdivision Plat Map
If your property falls under the neighborhood subdivision, you’re most likely able to get the precise area size of your lot from the neighborhood’s entire subdivision plot map.
Also, if your property falls under a district under construction, you should be able to easily get the subdivision plat map from the company that sold your lot to you.
In the case where the neighborhood isn’t under construction, there’s a possibility that you get a subdivision plat map from your local municipality.
8. Use Tax Maps of Your Local Municipality
Your local municipality may have tax maps where you can read lot areas in its possession. The maps could be either scanned copies which you can get from the municipality’s website, or hard copies, for which you have to go to the municipality building. Whatever the case may be, you can get details about your lot size.
9. Use an Existing Conditions Plan
A professional survey of your property would most likely mean an existing condition plan for your site has been prepared. An existing condition displays a lot of information about the property, including the existing contours and area of the lot.
10. Hire Professional Survey Services
This is probably the most expensive option for figuring out your lot size; nevertheless, hiring professional services for your property is the best option for getting accurate dimensions. It’s most likely that your property deed contains precise information about the dimensions of your lot.
However, a professional survey plan can come in handy, especially if you’re uncertain about the correctness of the details therein.
11. Check the Local GIS Website
Your local municipality may have a GIS program that gives room for online public access to its database. This database could contain information, including property tax maps that include numerous areas of lots.
If your property appears on the online maps, the GIS website may have available tools which enable you to measure the size of your lot as soon as you locate it on the maps.
12. Use the Pacing Method
Pacing is another interesting way of figuring out your lot size. However, the pacing method might not be the best option if you’re looking for accuracy. It’s a pretty easy and quick way to find out dimensions that are close enough, though.
This method entails measuring the length of one of your steps and then counting the number of steps required to walk the site (both the length and width). After getting all these dimensions, you proceed with doing some math to get the area.
13. Use a Measuring Wheel
It’s important to note that a measuring wheel costs quite some amount. However, you can be assured of the accuracy and precision it has to offer in helping you figure out your lot size. It allows you to measure your site with more effectiveness than what pacing offers.
Note that it’s a good idea to check with your HOA (Homeowner Association) if you’re part of one; this makes it easy for you to access the exact details of your lot, especially if a previous owner has made certain changes.
Also, note that the average lot size has evolved; it has nosedived below one-fifth of an acre (809.37 square meters), far off what it was a few years ago. The average size of a lot is about 8,600 square feet (798.97 square meters).
Finding Out Your Lot Size
An essential initial step in most projects is a grasp of the square footage you’re working with; this is, most times, the foundation upon which other processes involved in construction are built. Furthermore, without proper knowledge of your land area, you can’t figure out the building type that best suits you or how big it should be.
Getting accurate dimensions or at least close to precise measurements saves you from spending a lot of money and time re-evaluating your plans because of getting the wrong dimensions.
What Is the Right Method for You?
The right method for you depends on your preference. You might be more comfortable using a smartphone than using a measuring tool or vice versa; however, you must esteem accuracy over preference. Measuring the lot in a precise manner should be your utmost priority.
What Is a Lot Size?
A lot size is the size of the land on which your property is, as the name implies. Usually, lot size is expressed in acres or square feet, as the case may be. The lot size is the benchmark for understanding how large or otherwise your property is.
There are times in which you get a lot and get every necessary information regarding the size; some other times, you may inherit the land and can’t lay your hands on this information as soon as you want. What happens then?
Luckily, specific technology exists to determine lot sizes; you can find out the dimensions by using a lot size calculator or satellite images. More light would be shed on this subsequently.
The Importance of Lot Size
You may be wondering why knowing your lot size is important and what effect it has in the long run. This section sheds light on the importance of lot size.
It’s important to note that being aware of your lot size helps save you a lot of money and time; purchasing a building that’s way bigger than your property is indeed undesirable. You can prevent this simply by being aware of your lot size.
Being informed about your lot size helps you know the types of building projects that are realistic and best suited for your property. Knowing your lot size equips you with the knowledge of how much space you have for your projects and keeps you informed as to how much space you have left. Indeed, you don’t want a project that’ll leave you with no landscape.
Furthermore, lot size is essential in determining your land’s value, which comes in handy when you want to sell or buy a lot. How valuable your land is mainly dependent on the size of the lot. Don’t also forget that location is pivotal in determining the value.
Lot Size and Lot Shape
Another area to which you must give attention is the lot shape. It’s essential to be aware of your lot size, but you also need to know your lot shape. Usually, most lots have a rectangular shape. However, there are a few exceptions, as in the case of lands with irregular shapes.
Getting to know your lot shape and size affects other decisions you make about your property, which means you don’t run at a loss; loss of time and money.
Before undergoing any building project, you should consider size, shape, and other pivotal factors like elevation or terrain to get a wholesome picture of your property.
Lot Size vs. House Size
In the past, you could have both a large lot size and a large house, but these days, developers are now carving lands into smaller plots to build more homes, resulting in more sales.
With a large lot size, you can have space for a garden, playground, and outdoor entertainment, but you’ll need more landscape maintenance.
On the other hand, a large house gives more room for entertainment and accommodation of guests, bigger space to relax and have indoor activities; however, you’ll have more cleaning to do, more area to heat and cool, and more repairs to do.
Therefore, you have to choose between having a larger lot size or having a larger house.
Here are factors that you have to consider to make the right choice:
- Budget: How large your budget determines how large your home or lot will be. It’s advisable not to be tempted to go for a home or lot size that’s more than your budget, as you’ll have to struggle to pay for it later.
- Household size: Your household size is another essential factor when deciding to choose a larger home or lot, and this depends on whether you’re a growing family or an empty nester. For example, you may want a big compound to play in if you’re a growing family, but this shouldn’t be at the expense of comfortable room space.
- Commute time: In a bid to find a home or lot size that’s suitable for you, don’t forget to consider the location. Ensure you consider your commute time and also your accessibility to nearby schools, parks, etc.
Benefits of Accurate Dimensions
Getting accurate dimensions go a long way in helping anyone taking charge of your building project confirm that your building is best suited for the space you have and create 3D drawings to give you a mini model of your property.
Furthermore, in going through the approval period of your purchase, accurate dimensions come in handy; you can indicate your acceptance or otherwise of the plans.
Having accurate dimensions helps in ensuring that you purchase the correct size when purchasing land.
The essence of determining your lot size before proceeding with any construction project cannot be overemphasized. It’s required that you equip yourself with adequate knowledge of the dimensions of your lot, as this is the bedrock upon which other steps are built.
You can adopt many options to figure out your lot size. However, always remember that the accuracy of your figures matters because it’s what makes other steps involved in this process accurate. You can only achieve that perfect property and construction if the right factors are put into consideration.
For more, check out 13 Best Ways To Mark Property Lines and Boundaries.
- Should You Rent a Storage Container or Build a Shed? | Pro & Cons
- Barn vs. Shed | The 5 Key Differences
Hey, I’m Jim, and I’m the author of this website. I have been teaching people a wide variety of survivalism topics for over five years and have a lifetime of experience fishing, camping, general survivalism, and anything in nature. In fact, while growing up, I spent more time on the water than on land! I am also a best-selling author and have a degree in History, Anthropology, and Music. I hope you find value in the articles on this website. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions or input!