Metes and Bounds Land Description

What are legal land descriptions?

In legal documents, such as a lien, deed, trust deed, mortgage, and sales contract, courts require an exact description of where a piece of land is located.  This is not merely the address of the property but is a legal description.  There is more than one type of legal description you must know for your exam.  The metes-and-bounds legal land description method is the subject of this article.

Metes-and-boundsWhat is the metes-and-bounds legal land description?

Metes (distance) and bounds (direction) is the oldest method for creating land descriptions.  This legal land description is primarily used to describe the location of land in states on the east coast of the US.

How does the metes-and-bounds land description work?

A metes-and-bounds land description always begins and ends at a point of beginning (POB).  The point of beginning is also referred to as the point of commencement (POC).  From the point of beginning, the border of the property is described until the point of beginning is reached again. This land description always begins and ends at the point of beginning.

How are Monuments used in a metes-and-bounds land description?

Where is the point of beginning located?  Well, that’s where monuments come in.  Monuments are fixed objects and can be either natural or man-made.  So, say the point of beginning is a large tree.  The metes-and-bounds description will continue from the large tree, usually in feet and inches by direction to the next monument.  The description then proceeds in that manner until completed at the point of beginning.

What are the potential problems with the metes-and-bounds legal land description method?

Well, those monuments can erode.  That tree that was previously mentioned as a point of beginning may not be around in 100 years.  Additionally, metes-and-bounds descriptions are usually very long and complicated.

Are there other legal land descriptions available to use?

Yes, although the metes-and-bounds legal land description is the oldest one used, there are alternatives, such as the rectangular survey system (government survey system) and lot-and-block method.

What else can help me prepare to pass my real estate licensing exam on my first attempt?

Other tips to help you pass your real estate licensing exam on your first attempt:

Real Estate Test Taking Tips

How to Pass the Real Estate Exam

Real Estate Exam Math Made Easy

Also, check out our question of the day videos on our YouTube channel:

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