Landscaping is a great way to add value to your home or office. The problem is choosing the right company can be tricky. How should you choose your landscape firm?
There are hundreds of companies offering landscaping services. Some specialize in certain types of plants, such as trees, shrubs, flowers, lawns, etc., while others provide a full range of services.
When looking for a landscaper, consider these things:
Many people have no idea how much work is involved in building a beautiful landscape around their property. They often get sucked up by an advertising campaign that promises a fast turnaround with minimal effort on their part. They hire someone who does not have enough experience or simply sucks at what they do.
To save yourself from this mess, look for someone who has worked in the field long enough to know what needs to go where. A good landscaper will use his expertise to help determine what works best around your yard and if he has any suggestions for improvements. They should also give you examples of previous projects to see what they did and if they did it well.
Ask around! Talk to friends, neighbors, or co-workers about the different landscapers near your area. People tend to talk more freely when they do not feel like they are being harassed. When talking to other landscapers, ask them what kinds of jobs they have been hired for and their feedback. A reputation for high-quality work and customer service will speak volumes to most customers.
If possible, find a current client you can contact for reference information. Many landscaping firms will send you names and numbers of clients who would be willing to share positive stories.
However, check out online sources if you cannot track anyone down. These sites can provide a wealth of information about landscaping companies within your local business district.
Billing and Payment Methods
When working with landscapers, you need to understand the billing process and payment methods accepted. Once again, always ask questions before signing a contract and never sign anything until you know every written detail.
For instance, many folks assume that “free estimates” mean that you pay nothing upfront. There could be many hidden costs that come along with those free estimates. Some include but are not limited to:
- Initial site visit (generally paid for by homeowner).
- Report of the completed project.
- Any additional design ideas that may cost extra.
- Additional materials needed to complete the project
- Final clean-up once the job is finished.
- Final invoice (often charged at the end of each month).
- Collection & Handling fees.
- License Fees
- Permit fees.
These items add up quickly and need to be considered before agreeing with any contracts. It is also important to remember that landscapers typically bill based on time spent and materials they used. Please note whether the estimate includes labor charges, material prices, or both when looking through bids.
The last thing you want to do is find yourself paying for something you do not think will be included in the bid. Lastly, keep in mind that certain contractors only take credit cards rather than cash. This step makes things much easier as you don’t have to worry about carrying large amounts of money after giving them your card number and PIN.
Insurance: A professional landscaper should carry liability insurance or some sort of worker’s compensation coverage. Remember, even though the workers may have high skills, they still work outdoors. They usually face all kinds of potential injuries, including cuts, scrapes, bites, etc. Also, make sure that the company carries general liability insurance so their equipment won’t cause damage to someone else’s property.
To sum it up, choosing a landscape contractor can be a very stressful experience. There are plenty of options available, especially online, where people are always willing to share their experiences with other prospective clients. After reading this article, hopefully, you will gain enough knowledge to help you choose the best person for the job!
In case you have any architectural, structural, and MEP design including fire sprinkler design requirements, or need to design your home renovation project including structure, HVAC design, and landscape design, feel free to contact us. We provide you with the full permit set design + T24 for your request.