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30th Anniversary of Stoner & Associates, Inc.

Stoner & Associates, Inc. is proud to celebrate 30-years of providing quality surveying services throughout Florida. Since its founding in 1988, Stoner & Associates has experienced a tremendous growth and expansion of services designed to meet their clients’ specific needs while holding true to the mission of Experience, Excellence, Service and Technology.

The company was founded in Davie, Florida by James Stoner back in 1988. As a proud second-generation Land Surveyor, James has over 45-years of surveying experience in South Florida. Initially beginning his surveying career at Williams, Hatfield & Stoner, Inc where he worked his way up the ladder to become Vice President of the Surveying Department and then on to founding his own company thereafter.

“Stoner & Associates, Inc. growth has been driven by our strategic approach to deliver critical surveying services in a timely and accurate manner, making Stoner & Associates a trusted partner to both the private sector and government,” said James Stoner, President. He added, “We always apply the highest standards of accuracy and data collection to the surveys that we produce. It is our goal to provide accurate results and excellent products that meet or exceed our client’s expectations.”

The company’s milestone comes alongside a significant personal milestone for Mr. Stoner who is also celebrating his 65th birthday this year. His passion for Surveying has transitioned into the next generation making Stoner & Associates a true family run business. Mr. Stoner is joined in celebrating both of these milestones with his son Douglas, a field crew supervisor and his daughter Leigh Anne, who is the Internal Operations Manager along with the wonderful staff and crew of Stoner & Associates.

Technology Is Transforming - The Surveying Industry

As technology is rapidly changing how we live our day to day lives; technology is also playing a significant role in transforming industrial techniques across multiple industries.

Just as with other industries, surveying and mapping has rapidly evolved through new technological advancements that have revolutionized the field over the past few decades. Some of these advancements include robotic total stations, electronic distance measuring, lasers and ultrasonic tools along with drones and the advancement in GPS technology.

With the implementation of global positioning systems (GPS); the accuracy and speed in which surveys are performed has been transformed within the industry. As time and technology advanced over the past decades, GPS itself has significantly evolved from a handful of NAVSTAR satellites to a global constellation now referred to as Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) used to pinpoint positions anywhere in the world. These technological advancements have not only lead to faster and more accurate surveying but have improved cost efficiency and safety in the field.

With the assistance of other technological advancements in the field, GPS has revolutionized and will continue to revolutionize the industry for years to come. However, unlike other industries where technology is replacing workers, the need for experienced surveyors is still in high demand due to the complexity and expertise needed to properly implement these tools and deliver results that will stand the test of time. This has lead to great growth and demand in the industry over the past few decades.

While there are many benefits that technology has delivered in the field of surveying; the main benefits can simply be broken down into four key components that are essential in providing quality surveying and mapping services in 2019; speed, accuracy, cost efficiency and safety.

What You Should Know When Looking to Hire a Commercial Property Surveyor

So, you need a land surveyor; how do you find a qualified one? What should you expect in your survey?

There are many questions like these that you may be asking yourself and these are good. However, finding a qualified commercial property surveyor goes well beyond the “basic” questions. To help you make an informed decision; we have developed a list of questions and qualifications you should consider during your search for a professional commercial property surveyor.

Questions to Ask:

Are you licensed and insured?

This is common with most incorporated survey firms; however, having the right coverage is much different from project to project.

Do you have experience in completing the type(s) of survey(s) I need?

This is one of the most important questions you can ask due to the wide range of commercial survey types and the equipment needed to properly and accurately complete them. Experience drives accuracy, speed and overall quality of the final report.

What equipment will be used for my survey?

This is an extension of the experience needed; You want to ensure that your survey firm is operating with the latest technology and equipment available to provide an accurate and precise survey for you.

Availability and Timeframe?

In today’s fast paced world, time is money and having to wait for a survey to be completed can cost you in the long run. Therefore, it is important you have a proper understanding on the length of time the survey you are requesting should take. An experienced survey firm should be able to give you an accurate time table which you can utilized to complete your overall planning.

Other Qualifiers to Consider:

  • Training & Education
  • What Professional Affiliates or Certifications Do They Have
  • Are They Familiar with the General Area of the Survey
  • Can a Price Estimate Be Provided
  • What Is Included in the Final Report

If you are looking for a qualified commercial property surveyor, Stoner & Associates, Inc. is here to help. We will answer all these questions and more. Call us today to discuss your project at 954-585-0997.

5 Common Land Surveying Myths Debunked

Commercial Land Surveying can be a complicated business, and for that reason there are quite a few misconceptions about what it is and why it is needed. To help out, we have debunked five of the most common surveying myths:

Myth 1: Your land has been surveyed in the past and therefore you don’t need a new survey

It is true that all cities, towns or municipalities have mapped out all properties for tax purposes. However, this does not guarantee that the commercial property has been previously surveyed. Furthermore, even if it has, there is no guarantee the survey is accurate. With the advancements of technology in land surveying, only an up-to-date survey will guarantee accuracy of the proper boundary marks of your property.

Myth 2: If there are currently visible survey stakes there is no need to have another survey

Although survey stakes may be present on what you think is the proper property line; it could be quite possible that the past survey stakes may not be intended for marking your property line. Therefore, it is recommended to have a licensed Professional Surveyor determine where the property line begins and ends.

Myth 3: The fencing around the property designates the property line

This is not always the case. Often, previous property owners will utilize tree lines and other physical structures to connect the fence line to cut down on cost during installation. Therefore, the only way to truly know the correct property line is to have a professional survey performed on the property.

Myth 4: Surveys are too expensive and not worth the money

Property is often one of the largest investments anyone can make in one’s lifetime. Therefore, preserving that investment often plays an important role in a commercial real estate transaction such as insurance, maintenance, etc. However, most people don’t often think of surveys as an investment in your property; when the truth of the matter is, not having a proper survey on your property can cost you thousands of dollars.

Myth 5: Neighboring property owners cannot encroach over your property line

Property encroaching is a common issue within the survey industry. This issue can incur on both your end and or the adjacent property without a property boundary survey. Which is why investing is a professional commercial property survey is essential for preserving your property and its value.

There are many more myths and misconceptions about commercial land surveys and property boundaries it would be nearly impossible to list them all. However, if you have questions or would like to discuss other concerns, our team is here to assist you with all your commercial property survey needs. Call us today to discuss your project needs or questions at (954) 585-0997.

Land Surveying Expert Witness, When to Hire A Qualified Surveyor

When most people think of an expert witness they think of an accountant, a medical professional, forensics or a mental health expert. However, expert witnesses are used in a wide scope of legal issues which also includes issues related to land boundaries, surveys and more.
In certain litigation cases, a surveying expert witness can be an invaluable resource to either side. They can provide expert knowledge and expertise by first identifying, introducing and authenticating documents and other information within the case that is relevant to boundary disputes, elevations and more. These experts can speak to the relevance of certain information and how it should be applied to correctly position boundaries, elevations and other elements in order to draw a conclusion or final opinion on the matter.

Why Land Surveyors Make Great Expert Witness

Our judicial system relies heavily on the use of expert witnesses to inform judges and juries on the facts regarding specific components of a case. Therefore, in order to present a solid argument for either side, an expert witness is brought in to dispute erroneous or disputed components within their profession.

A land surveyor can utilize a wide range of tools and knowledge to address boundary and elevation issues that other construction, real estate or commercial property experts have limited knowledge of. A land surveyor can present detailed information that lends credibility to the overall presentation in the case.

In What Kinds of Cases Do Land Surveyor Typically Provide Litigation Support?

Land surveyors are used in cases throughout the United States to address a wide array of issues; most of which you may have not even considered relevant to their level of expertise. They often lend their expertise and support for accident scene documentation, construction disputes, project errors and omissions, and all types of encroachment issues related to boundaries or easements to name a few.

If you are looking for a qualified land surveyor, Stoner & Associates, Inc. is here to help. We will answer all these questions and more. Call us today to discuss your project at 954-585-0997.

Professional Land Surveyor Qualifications in The State of Florida

Becoming a professional land surveyor takes hard work and dedication to the craft. In order to obtain a professional surveyor and mapper license, all applicants must be approved by the Florida Board of Professional Surveyors and Mappers prior to taking any examination for Florida licensure through the process of examination and or endorsement. First time applicants for licensure are entitled to take the licensure examination, after approval by the Board, to practice in the State of Florida as a professional surveyor and mapper if you are of a good moral character and have satisfied one of the following requirements:

Licensure by Examination

If you are applying for the first time for licensure by examination, you are entitled to take the Fundamentals of Surveying (FS) examination, the Principles and Practice of Surveying (PS) examination, and Florida Jurisdictional examination, after approval by the board. To apply to practice in the state of Florida as a professional surveyor and mapper you must be of a good moral character and have satisfied one of the following requirements:

Option 1
The applicant has received a bachelor’s degree, its equivalent, or higher in surveying and mapping or a similarly titled program, including, but not limited to, geomatics, geomatics engineering, and land surveying, from a college or university recognized by the board and accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). The applicant must also have a specific experience record of 4 or more years as a subordinate to a professional surveyor and mapper in the active practice of surveying and mapping, which experience is of a nature indicating that the applicant was in responsible charge of the accuracy and correctness of the surveying and mapping work performed. Work experience acquired as a part of the education requirement may not be construed as experience in responsible charge.

If the applicant has received a bachelor’s degree, its equivalent, or higher in surveying and mapping or a similarly titled program, including, but not limited to, geomatics, geomatics engineering, and land surveying, from a college or university recognized by the board but is not an ABET accredited program, then the course criteria must be met.

Option 2
The applicant has received a bachelor’s degree, its equivalent, or higher in a course of study, other than in surveying and mapping, at an accredited college or university and has a specific experience record of 6 or more years as a subordinate to a registered surveyor and mapper in the active practice of surveying and mapping, 5 years of which shall be of a nature indicating that the applicant was in responsible charge of the accuracy and correctness of the surveying and mapping work performed.

The applicant must have completed a minimum of 25 semester hours in surveying and mapping subjects or in any combination of courses in civil engineering, surveying, mapping, mathematics, photogrammetry, forestry, or land law and the physical sciences. Any of the required 25 semester hours that were not completed as part of the four-year course of study may be approved at the discretion of the board. Work experience acquired as a part of the education requirement does not count as experience in responsible charge.

Licensure by Endorsement

If you are applying for licensure by endorsement, you are entitled to take the Florida Jurisdictional Examination, after approval by the board, to practice in the state of Florida as a professional surveyor and mapper if you have satisfied one of the following requirements:

Option 1
You hold a valid license to practice surveying and mapping issued prior to July 1, 1999, by another state or territory of the United States; have passed a national, regional, state or territorial licensing examination that is substantially equivalent to the examination required by Section 472.013, Florida Statutes; and you have a specific experience record of at least eight years as a subordinate to a registered surveyor and mapper in the active practice of surveying and mapping, six years of which must be of a nature indicating that you were in responsible charge of the accuracy and correctness of the surveying and mapping work performed.

Option 2
You hold a valid license to practice surveying and mapping issued by another state or territory of the United States where criteria for issuance of the license was substantially the same as the licensure criteria that existed in Florida at the time the license was issued.

Continuing Education Requirements to Maintain Your License in Florida

To maintain an active license in Florida, licensees must complete at least 24 hours of continuing education courses during each two-year period. All continuing education courses must be offered by a Florida Board of Professional Surveyors and Mappers provider and must be approved by the board to receive full credit.

To ensure you are working with a licensed professional surveyor and mapper in the state of Florida, the Florida Board of Professional Surveyors and Mappers has included an easy to use license search database to help you ensure you are working with the best in their field.

Understanding Florida’s Flood Zones

Florida is well documented as a geographical region that can experience significant weather and flooding issues. Therefore, it is always strongly recommended that commercial property owners brush up on their understanding of flood zones and the impact they can have on flood insurance and overall flood risk.

Flood zones and elevation requirements are implemented and regulated through various government programs in order to ensure that property owners are protected from the threat of material and financial loss due to flood conditions. Since flood zones can change, it is important to fully understand FEMA guidelines and current flood maps.

Flood hazard areas in Florida can be identified on the FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Map as a Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA). SFHA are defined as the area that will be inundated by the flood event having a 0.2 percent to 1-percent chance of being equaled or exceeded in any given year. The 1-percent annual chance flood is also referred to as the base flood or 100-year flood; while the 0.2-percent annual chance flood is referred to as the 500-year flood. Outside of these zones are the higher elevation zones which fall outside of the 0.2-percent annual flood probability know as Zone C or Zone X.

These Flood Hazard Areas are broken down and labelled within seventeen different zones:

Zone A
Zone AO
Zone AH
Zones A1-A30
Zone AE
Zone A99
Zone AR
Zone AR/AE
Zone AR/AO

Zone AR/A1-A30
Zone AR/A
Zone B
Zone C
Zone V
Zone VE
Zones V1-V30
Zone X

Flood surveys and elevation surveys are two popular services provided by Stoner & Associates. These surveys are required to ensure that all new buildings adhere to proper flood, elevation, and building requirements. This service is also provided to individuals that have been required to purchase flood insurance at the request of a lender. Elevation certificates for construction properties are available and help determine if a property is located within a designated flood zone.

In order to determine whether a property is located within a flood zone, the property must have flood certification. While some are hesitant to spend the money to acquire such a certification, the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) reports that flood insurance savings earned by following its flood guidelines average $90,000 over the span of 10 years. To search if your property may be in a FEMA designated flood zone visit the FEMA Flood Zone Map link for more information. To learn more about acquiring a flood survey and/or elevation survey for your property call us at (954) 585-0997.

Famous Historical Land Surveyors

Land surveying has played a vital role in the formation of all nations and the United States is no exception. In fact, did you know that one of the largest original land holders in the state of Georgia, Nobel Jones, was the state’s original and sole surveyors during the formation of Georgia? To this day Nobel Jones’ family is still the only “original” Georgia families that reside on the over 800-acre property (Wormsloe Plantation) they were allotted during the original settlement of the state.

Nobel was not the only famous land surveyor in US history, however. Many prominent figures in the formation of our great nation also spent a portion of their career within the surveying industry. Here are a few of the most notable figures that may surprise you:

George Washington - One of America’s most famous (and earliest) land surveyors is George Washington himself. The young future president got his bright start at the age of 17 in 1749. It was not long until he was appointed to be the Surveyor General for Virginia. Washington actually played an essential role at this time, because surveying the land promoted expansion westward.

Thomas Jefferson - Thomas Jefferson was appointed to work as the Albermarle County surveyor in Virginia in 1773. He also promoted surveying by sending Lewis & Clark on their expedition to explore the land gained through the Louisiana Purchase.

Abraham Lincoln - George Washington and Thomas Jefferson weren’t the only president to work as a surveyor. The nation’s 16th president got his start as a self-educated man in Kentucky. He worked as a storekeeper and postmaster in addition to surveying land and studying law at the same time. It is clear that Lincoln was a man with a great deal of talent and many skills, seeing how much time he spent participating in different types of work before he became president.

Daniel Boone - As an American pioneer and explorer from Kentucky, Daniel Boone resolved settler’s claims to land. He was known to have spent much of his time traveling around the American frontier. In spite of the fact that he had no formal schooling, Boone went on to become an expert tracker by the time he was a teenager. In the years following, he took to surveying.

Henry David Thoreau - Though most might know of Thoreau as an author, he actually became a surveyor in the 1850s before he published his books. Being a surveyor allowed Thoreau to use his career to facilitate his hobby. Thoreau used his observations to journal his ideas.

Benjamin Banneker - As a self-taught African American mathematician and surveyor, Benjamin Banneker was remarkably successful. In 1789, Washington even appointed Banneker to be part of the team surveying the future site of Washington, D.C. The project took about two years.

William Clark & Meriwether Lewis - Lewis and Clark were tasked with some of the most intensive land surveying in American history. While Lewis had a reputation as more of a planner, Clark was an expert surveyor and mapmaker. Together, the partners traveled across the land then known as the Louisiana Purchase, making their way to Oregon to scout it out.

When Do You Need an ALTA Land Survey?

An ALTA Survey is a survey prepared by a licensed surveyor in accordance with detailed standards adopted by the American Land Title Association (ALTA) and the American Congress of Surveying and Mapping (ACSM). The ALTA Survey is a land title survey that assesses the boundaries, the location of the improvements on the property, including buildings and other structures, fences, utility lines and installations, trails, paths and roads, etc., as well as the titles and improvement locations of a property and the location of all access areas.

When acquiring commercial real estate, it is important to conduct due diligence to ensure there are no surprises that will affect the value or use of the property. One aspect of the due diligence process is considering obtaining an ALTA Land Survey. The following are two main reasons for obtaining an ALTA Survey:

  • To specifically locate both record and non-record matters that affect the property, which can be imperative for evaluating what terms to proceed with the land acquisition. This is important when the preliminary title report contains many or hard to locate easements, or when the ground appears to be complicated.
  • To satisfy the title insurer’s requirements for the issuance of ALTA title insurance coverage for Survey Risks.

When purchasing commercial real estate, title companies may require an ALTA Land Survey prior to issuing title insurance covering the Survey Risks such as (1) encroachments, boundary line disputes, or other matters that would be disclosed by an accurate survey of the commercial property; and (2) easements or claims of easements not shown in public records.

An ALTA Land Survey will identify:

  • Buildings, fences or other improvements from adjacent properties that encroach onto the property being acquired;
  • Buildings, fences or other improvements located on the commercial property being acquired that encroach onto adjacent properties;
  • Buildings, fences and other improvements located on the commercial property being acquired that encroach onto existing easements (utility, access, etc.) located on the commercial property being acquired;
  • Existing record easements that might have an adverse impact on the use of the property being acquired; and
  • Potential easements or claims of easements that may not be disclosed in the public records but indicated by facts on the ground that might adversely impact the commercial property being acquired.

It is recommended to request an ALTA Land Survey at least 30-days before the need for title insurance, as this survey will provide information necessary to the issuance of title insurance. In addition, the ALTA Land Survey must be completed prior to the closing of escrow. It is best to speak with a professional land surveyor as early on in the process as possible, in order to maximize time.

At Stoner & Associates, we are experts in the ALTA/ACSM Land Title Surveys specifications, including the optional Table “A” Requirements.  We can advise you on these confusing requirements and help you design a survey that will meet the lender’s requirements, without adding unnecessary and expensive requirements.

Most importantly, we have worked with legal professionals and know that you need accuracy and reliability.  We know that you need your survey to be completed on time for the closing date.  We work hard to be part of your team and to answer any and all questions pertaining to the survey drawing, certifications, and title commitments.

For more information regarding the ALTA / ACSM land title surveying services offered by Stoner & Associates, please call us at (954) 585-0997 or request a quote.

About Stoner & Associates, Inc.

Since 1988, Stoner & Associates, Inc. has continually provided the highest level of quality service to each and every project. Staying true to the company mission statement of Experience, Excellence, Service and Technology: These are the watchwords that we apply to each of our clients' projects. Today, the company services the greater South Florida area including Broward, Miami-Dade, Palm Beach and Monroe Counties. Allowing the team of professionals to deliver critical surveying services in a timely manner to both the private sector and the government. For more information on Stoner & Associates, Inc., please call (954) 585-0997 or visit www.stonersurveyors.com.


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4341 Southwest 62nd Avenue, Davie, Florida  33314
Phone: (954) 585-0997 - Fax: (954) 585-3927
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