Land investigation

Land investigation

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I'm in the fortunate position of having identified an infill plot within a family property. My intention is to split and transfer the land once I obtain planning permission to build a small house. I've been advised two different points which have made it a little tricky:
1) Perform all the checks on the land before getting involved with the design and planning stage to make to avoid me wasting money in case I can't build
2) Go straight ahead with the design and planning stage (aslong as there aren't any restrictive covenants) as planning should pick up any of the other major issues anyway.

From experience, which of the two options above is the better route? If I was to go for point 1 and research the land, what should I be investigating?
a)Covenants - I have the Title register and the covenant is not applicable to my build
b)Land Survey - what would need to be investigated? I've had mixed responses from surveyors where some have mentioned they would not be able to help investigate
c) Solicitor - various searches i.e. local authority, water, environmental. I've also had mixed responses from Solicitors who say I don't need to carry out the searches before planning
d)Services - Water pipes locations, national grid
e)Anything else?

Many thanks for your help!

Asked by aims