Land Surveyor

Establish land boundaries by doing physical inspections of the area.

Quick Stats

Salary Range
$31,000 – $90,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Land Surveyors do?

Land Surveyors measure, mark, and record property boundaries, topography, and man-made objects on the earth’s surface. Construction companies and local governments commonly employ Land Surveyors, but you can also find work helping Mapmakers, Engineers, Miners, and Scientists. Typical duties include evaluating a piece of land’s slope and terrain, researching legal documents concerning property lines, and taking accurate measurements of pieces of land as well as determining their position.

If you enjoy scouting your house and neighborhood on the latest update of Google Earth, a career as a Land Surveyor might be your higher calling. In this job, you physically go to locations and record every land feature. Your findings have many uses. For example, they prevent construction crews from erecting wobbly skyscrapers because your reports tell them whether they need to level uneven ground first. And if a city needs to build a new road, it plans the road’s path around residential property boundaries using your research as a guide.

Ever drive through an intersection with a yellow tripod set up in the center? That’s just one of the tools of your trade. Your tool kit is composed of traditional land surveying tools like compasses, as well as advanced tools like GPS devices and hi-tech cameras, which sit on those yellow tripods and help you to be as precise as possible in your measurements.

As you progress, you will be able to specialize in surveying certain types of geographic areas. Land Surveyors who go the geodetic route, for instance, use satellites to scan massive sections of the earth’s surface. Other Land Surveyors chart lake boundaries and underwater depths.

Should I be a Land Surveyor?

You should have a bachelor's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.

  • Also known as: Land Examiner, Licensed Land Surveyor, Professional Land Surveyor, Registered Land Surveyor

    How to become a Land Surveyor

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