LPD Surveys are frequently asked questions (FAQs) from clients about what we do, the processes for land surveys/developments and the associated timing & costs. The following FAQ’s answers will give you better understanding but do contact us if you need more information and help with your project.

What is a Licensed Surveyor (or Registered Surveyor)?2018-08-02T16:14:52+08:00

A licensed surveyor has been assessed as being professional and competent in the application of land tenure laws and regulations, and possess the ability to perform authorised (cadastral) surveys by the Land Surveyors Licensing Board (LSLB) of Western Australian.

How much does a land survey cost? What are your land surveying rates?2017-04-10T03:33:12+08:00

The cost of a survey or development project depends on a number of factors:

  • Mobilisation, complexity of the work, number of employees & equipment required.
  • The type of deliverable and accuracy of information required.
  • Access, topography and vegetation of the land.
  • Existing cadastral boundary information in the area from previous and original surveys.
  • State & government department’s application, process & lodgement fees.

For smaller projects LPD Surveys provides fixed quotes, fixed quotes with options or hourly rates for the tasks required to do the job and will outline the costs of materials, mobilisation, fees & charges when costs are known.

For larger projects LPD Surveys has charge out & mobilisation rates for personnel & equipment or for estate/large land developments/subdivisions we provide a cost per lot basis with fixed options depending on staging.

Please contact us about your project – we can provide you with sound advice, options, timing & costing.

What is the difference between a contour survey, site survey, feature survey, topography survey, AHD or level survey?2017-04-10T03:33:20+08:00

Depending on the industry the names of these surveys are different but to a surveyor they generally mean a similar thing. In one sentence – Site surveys are where surveyors locate features & topography on a property producing digital data and/or a paper (PDF) survey plan usually with contours depicting levels to AHD (Australian Height Datum).

LPD Surveys typically calls these surveys feature/contour surveys.

One may need a feature/contour survey for building design, building and planning approvals through state & local governments, engineering or construction drawings, demolition plans, buildings additions or new dwellings and drainage or environmental studies.

What is an Identification Survey? What is a re-establishment (repeg) survey?2017-04-10T03:31:01+08:00

An identification/re-establishment survey is when a lot or property boundary needs to be redefined.

When a licensed surveyor calculates a land boundary using the hierarchy of evidence from previous surveys they can denote occupations, buildings and features in reference to the boundary – this is an identification survey. A re-establishment (repeg) survey is the same process but the boundary is marked to practising regulations. This survey provides boundary certainty as licensed surveyors are required to be impartial and determine the boundary position as per original monuments.

  • Commonly these surveys are used for:
  • Constructing a house or building on or near the boundary
  • Improvements to a fence or retaining wall
  • Establish exact boundaries for strata title/ownership purposes
  • Due diligence to confirm land boundaries when buying or selling (particularly old properties)
  • Accurate locations of services/features within a lot for certainty to local government & service authorities
Do I need or should I get a boundary re-survey to build/erect a retaining wall or fence on my land boundary? Do I need a repeg when planning to build/extend on or near my property boundary line?2017-04-10T03:30:35+08:00

Yes, most definitely. To avoid costly boundary disputes with your neighbour whenever a fence/wall is replaced or newly constructed you should have a licensed surveyor re-establish the boundary and provide a re-peg certificate (Regulation 25A) as proof for your records.

If a building is built over the boundary you will be required to fix the encroachment issue and this is generally an expensive exercise – multiple times more than a survey to get the boundary line marked correctly in the first instance.

What are Lease Area Surveys? When are they needed/required?2017-04-10T03:30:13+08:00

Lease Area Surveys measure the area of land or space within a building. This area becomes the basis for determining the rental value of the premises or land under the terms of a lease agreement. As licensed surveyors we can accurately determine the area under the guidelines.

Lease Area Surveys are needed to comply with the legal requirements of the Property Council of Australia and avoid owner-tenancy disputes/litigation for leases.

Can I subdivide my land or how do I subdivide my block in Perth2019-09-18T21:58:56+08:00

Can I subdivide my land or how do I subdivide my block in Perth?

A number of factors determine whether a lot can be subdivided. LPD Surveys can provide you with advice once we are aware of the development outcomes you wish to achieve. How the development is staged can also change the cost, process and time of the project. If you are planning to build at the same time and/or demolish an existing dwelling on the lot it will change the dynamic of how the development should be staged.

The best place to start is by talking to one of our project mangers for a quick assessment of the land, existing dwellings and the land zoning (R-codes) as well as your subdivision goals. If the lot has potential then it is highly recommended for your due diligence to order a subdivision feasibility report for a more detailed assessment of the future subdivision development which outlines the possible conditions and costs that could be incurred. Below is PDF outlining the general process and possible steps for your subdivision:




When we get the question “Can I subdivide my land or how do I subdivide my block in Perth?” The things we like to ask the land owner is:

What is the intended use and purpose for the title at the end of the project?

It could be profit gain, expanding property portfolio, leasing dwellings/units, adding value to existing dwelling, downsizing or inheritance.

Are you building at the same time, and if so do you intend to strata title the units/part lots, live in one dwelling/unit and rent others?

How much time do you have to achieve the outcomes you desire? What options best suit your cash flow?

Click on our contact us page and drop us an online enquiry or give us a call to get started! We are passionate about offering the best advice and land titling solutions for our clients.

What is a Freehold or Green Title Subdivision, a Survey-Strata Subdivision, and what is the difference?2017-04-10T03:29:26+08:00

A Freehold or Green Title lot is the name given to a traditional block of land (created under the Transfer of Land Act) that is completely independent from its neighbouring lots in terms of servicing and ownership giving the registered proprietors (owners) total autonomy. A Survey Strata allows the creation of ‘vacant’ strata lots. A Strata Title is part of a group of two or more lots forming a Strata Scheme, which has a Strata Company over it and is subject to the rules of the Strata Titles Act.

The planning and servicing difference: Freehold or Green Title lot subdivision approvals can be more difficult to achieve as the Western Australian Planning Commission (WAPC) and local government can be more rigid in interpreting the subdivision rules and impose more conditions. As the lot is required to be fully serviced independently, it must have direct access to sewer mains, water mains and underground power, in some cases this can dramatically increase the subdivision costs.

Survey Strata lots have less restrictions in regard to servicing and WAPC approvals. The lot services can be connected through other Survey-Strata lots to the service mains.  The creation of a common property lot, usually along a side boundary, allows it to be used as an access and service corridor and can make it possible to retain buildings with narrow access. The maintenance and upkeep of any common property lots is the responsibility of all strata lot owners.

What is the subdivision process for Freehold (Green Title) and Survey Strata Subdivisions?2019-09-18T21:54:28+08:00

If the site is feasible (see above – Can I subdivide my land?), meets planning requirements and achieves the development outcomes for the client, LPD Surveys can assist/manage the whole process of subdivision.

For a visualisation of some of the steps that may be required in your development please see the following PDF:


Typically the process is:

  • A surveyor completes a feature/contour survey (sometimes requiring a boundary identification survey at the same time) and produces a subdivision plan with the proposed boundaries superimposed over the parent lot(s).
  • The project manager submits an application to the WAPC accompanied by the application fee (paid by the client) which includes: Proposed subdivision plan, bushfire BAL assessment or management plan (if required), Acid Sulphate Assessment (coastal/floodplain areas only) and management plan (high risk areas), geotechnical report (if required) and environmental survey report (if within a contaminated site).
  • The WAPC receives the application and has 90 days to refer to authorities that have interests over the parent lot(s). Draft conditions for larger developments may be given prior to the conditional approval being granted.
  • WAPC conditionally approves the subdivision for 3 years (4 years if large development). If the client is satisfied with conditions on the approval the subdivision can proceed to a staging and utility quote phase. Water and power agreements are to be applied for who will determine the serving costs and arrangement required.
  • A licensed surveyor can complete a surround survey of the parent land parcel(s) and when site works are complete (if any) the subdivision can be pegged (final survey) and a Deposited or Survey-Strata plan can be drafted along with a surveyors fieldbook.
  • Once all conditions on the WAPC approval have been met the project manager can apply for clearances from the relevant authorities by submitting the documentation online.
  • Once the clearances from servicing authorities are received, the Deposited or Survey Strata plan can be finalised and lodged with all documents at Landgate (including a licensed valuers unit entitlement report if a survey strata).
  • When all clearances are received they can be lodged at the WAPC with the form 1C fee applicable (paid by client).
  • Once Landgate have audited and certified the plan it can then be released to WAPC for endorsement.
  • After the WAPC has endorsed the plan, Landgate will put the Deposited or Survey Strata plan in order for dealings – ready for land titles to be issued from a settlement agent or conveyancer.
WAPC subdivision process2019-09-18T21:53:12+08:00

WAPC subdivision process

WAPC subdivision process can be visualised by the below PDF:


Each site is different. Timeframes and requirements will be unique, depending on what exists and what is being created on the block, the type of subdivision, and the workload of the government and servicing authorities that need to approve the clearances of subdivision. Most projects take a minimum of 6 to 12 months from start to finish.

What is a Built Strata (or Built Form) Subdivision?2017-04-10T03:27:43+08:00

This type of subdivision is ideal if you plan to build several buildings (typically townhouses or units) on your development lot or if there is already multiple buildings on one parent freehold lot. These can be residential duplex or triplex dwellings, multi storey units or commercial units/offices. A surveyor will need to be involved at the initial Development Approvals (DA) stage providing a feature/contour survey of the site. Typically a draft strata plan is useful once planning approvals are obtained. Once a building approval is obtained and the site is ready a licensed surveyor can then perform a re-survey of the parent parcel set-out the building.

The new buildings will need to be finished to lock up stage and all other servicing and construction tasks completed as prescribed in the DA before titles can be issued. When staging a strata development or needing to create vacant lots, the development will need to be referred to the WAPC.

A Built Strata can be the best way to subdivide your block and the cheapest/quickest way to subdivide in terms of planning approvals and government/statutory fee costs. For residential developments (less than 2500m²) that are not creating vacant lots, the Built Strata process does not require WAPC approvals and the development is controlled by the local government building department.

What is the difference between a Built (Build or Building) Strata & Survey Strata?2017-04-10T03:27:24+08:00

A Built Strata contains buildings (units, stores and balconies), yard/service areas and common property which make up the boundaries of the land parcel. The Strata Plan showing the buildings and agreed part lot boundaries that are defined by dimension along physical features on the property such as fences, driveways and other monuments.

A Survey Strata is defined by dimensions and the survey marks placed by a licensed surveyor. The Survey Strata plan does not show any buildings and is looks very similar to a freehold (green title) subdivision plan.

Please contact us to discuss what strata scheme would best suit your development outcomes.

I am intending to build and strata title multi-tier units on a Survey Strata lot – is this possible?2017-04-10T03:27:06+08:00

You cannot “strata a strata” – you can only re-subdivide a strata scheme and you will require a notice of resolution from the strata company (unit owners) permission of the entire Strata scheme. Under Survey Strata you cannot have multi-tier strata lots, only single tier (side by side). It is possible to get around this by reverting the strata scheme back to freehold (application to WAPC) and cancelling the survey strata but this is a long process. If the units are built it may be best to rent them and will be the only option if you cannot obtain approval from the strata company. Further-more you cannot have buildings/stores/car-bays encroach parent land boundaries or have a part lot over an easement.

Can I convert my built/unit strata scheme to Survey-Strata or Freehold (Green Title)?2017-04-10T03:26:40+08:00

If you are the owner of all units/part lots or there is unanimous agreement from the strata company (and mortgage lenders agree) you can convert the built scheme if the future lots will meet the current zoning and planning requirements. Meeting the freehold requirements are typically more difficult as the conversion requires the complete separation of all services (water, power, sewer etc.) so that no lot accesses a service via another lot. A conversion to survey strata can share the services and typically a WAPC subdivision application is not applicable.

Click here to read Landgate’s “How To Guide” on Survey Strata Conversions.