Measured building surveys are an integral part of the property development process. They are typically ordered by various stakeholders such as architects and surveyors, property developers, builders and private homeowners and can provide accurate representations of all structural elements and architectural features by recording floor plans, elevations and sections.

Basic Overview

A measured building survey (MBS) is one of the first steps to take in property renovations, extensions and redevelopments. It also assists with valuation, creating safety plans and managing services such as water, electricity, gas and sewerage.

Measured building surveys are conducted using a range of techniques and technologies. According to this article, they can be carried out on-site using ground survey equipment or from the air with drones and aerial laser scanners.

An accurate representation of a property can help avoid costly errors during renovation or restoration projects, as it allows clients to meet tight deadlines and make informed decisions. Besides that, it serves as an efficient base reference point for other information like mechanical and electrical data that may improve efficiency throughout the endeavor.

It is essential that the surveyor has access to all areas of a property. This can be especially critical when conducting surveys on roofs, attics or light wells which may be difficult from below.

Any health and safety requirements or risk assessments that must be fulfilled should be discussed prior to the survey. Doing this helps guarantee that no work is undertaken which could cause harm to either the property or those living within it.

Once a survey is complete, the data is transferred into specialist software for processing into 2D drawings and 3D models. This allows the surveyor to produce outputs tailored for each client’s individual requirements – these could include CAD drawings, floor plans, elevations or sections.


These surveys prove invaluable when it comes to meeting deadlines and budgets – especially when it comes to redevelopment projects, extensions or space planning.

Dimensionally accurate representations of buildings and structures can be captured using Total Stations, laser measuring devices or 3D HD laser scanners, as opposed to the time-intensive process of doing the work by hand. Once translated into scaled 2D traditional plans or digital models, these designs may be utilized for design proposals, technical data management during construction or facilities management tasks.

The time needed to complete a measured survey depends on the type of data being collected. For instance, creating a point cloud model involves capturing distances between points on a building’s surface – something easily calculated. After processing and registration, this data can then be easily imported into CAD software which then cuts it into manageable slices that can be traced-over in 3D space.

Point cloud data presents some unique challenges to surveyors that could potentially extend the time needed to finish the job, if not working with the right pros. To understand these quirks better, do some preliminary research of your own and see if the data can be acquired in-house before contacting the professionals.

When going with a surveyor, they can finish the job according to the client’s requirements as opposed to your in-house team attempting to cobble it together, themselves. To guarantee they are of high quality, it is essential that you have a clear understanding of what the information will be used for so that an appropriate strategy can be chosen.


Accurate measurements help prevent mistakes during construction and guarantee the development runs smoothly. Accurate measurements are key for any measurement survey, as they can prevent costly errors, delays and issues with planning permission.

Building surveys are conducted with advanced equipment like laser measures, optical total stations and digital cameras. After processing these measurements, they are interpolated to produce precise floor plans, elevations, sections and 3D models.

When measuring building accuracy, the type of survey used matters. Unconnected or semi-connected surveys tend to be the most precise types, though connected surveys can also offer high levels of precision.

Surveyors historically utilized an instrument known as a ‘total-station’ to take measurements and create drawings of the site with relative X Y & Z coordinates. This helped define any building corners or other features – still used today with slight modifications over recent years.

Modern surveying techniques increasingly rely on laser scanning technology. These instruments used by pros like ASES Ltd produce a point cloud of all detected points with far greater information density than older methods could provide. This is far better than in previous years.

This data is then fed into sophisticated software, which creates 3D models of both the exterior and interior features of a building. This enables surveyors to produce more comprehensive studies while conserving site time on-site.

Data collected during the survey is then traced over in CAD to create floor plans, elevations, sections and 3D models with various levels of detail (LOD). With these measurements in hand, engineers can produce precise drawings that prove invaluable when it comes to building projects.