What is Real Property Report (RPR)?
As per Alberta Land Surveyors’ Association, Real Property Report (RPR) can be defined as a legal document in the form of plan that clearly illustrates the various physical features of the property and the location of significant visible improvements relative to property boundaries.
In simple words, A Real Property Report is a plan that illustrates the survey performed by the professional land surveyor showing what is and what is not on a parcel of land at the time of the survey.
With reference to Part D Section 8.4 of the Alberta Land Surveyors' Association (ALSA) Manual of Standard Practice, the real property report shall show, but not limited to:
- All improvements on the parcel and the nature of each improvement
- Any existing encroachment and the amount of encroachment
- Dimensions and bearings of each boundary of the parcel
- Survey monuments found and used to define the boundary of the parcel
- All utility rights-of-way and easements that affect the extent of title
- All other surface interest affecting the extent of title
An Alberta Land Surveyor’s Real Property Report serves a valuable purpose in any real estate transaction as it proactively identifies any issues that might be of concern not only for buyers and sellers but also for the finance/mortgage institutions, insurance companies and the affected neighbours as well.
According to the Alberta Land Surveyors’ Association website, real property reports are required by:
Property owners, to be informed of:
- The locations of improvements within the property boundaries.
- Any encroachments from adjacent properties.
- Property compliance with municipal requirements.
Property Purchasers, to be informed of:
- The boundary and improvement locations on the property.
- Any problems relating to the property boundaries.
- Any outstanding charges on the land and property.
Municipalities, to assist them:
- In determining compliance with bylaws and fire codes.
- In the planning and development process.
Property Sellers (vendors), to provide:
- Protection from potential future legal liabilities resulting from problems related to property boundaries and improvements.
Mortgage Lenders, to be informed of:
- Conformance of improvements with municipal bylaws.
- Problems that may have to be resolved prior to registration of the mortgage
- Provide a visual representation of the property for sale.
- Meet the requirements of the real estate listing/purchase contract.
- Have information to avoid delays in completing property transactions when a Real Property Report is arranged early in the sales process.
Do you need a New RPR or Updated RPR?
It is a good idea to have an updated RPR when performing any real estate transactions - selling a house, acquiring a mortgage, etc. Oftentimes, the City’s or town's planning department would also require one when you decide to do some renovations/additions on your property when you apply for permits.
RPR is a snapshot of what is or isn't on your property, so an update would be necessary should you need one. To keep the cost down, it is a good idea to contact the surveyor who did the original survey as they, depending on the age of the last survey, might still have your file and an update would be a simpler task rather than hiring a new surveyor who would need to do the whole process over again.
How much an RPR can cost?
The cost of a real property report can vary based on the complexity, size and the age of sub-division. As most jobs depend on the time spent on the field by the survey crew, locating evidence is perhaps the most time-consuming part of the fieldwork. If the sub-division is too old, evidence can be harder to find. The size of the lot and the complexity of structures within the property can also affect the price since they tend to take more time than simple regular ones.