There are many important steps when choosing the right landscaping contractor, but it’s equally important to selecting a landscape designer and company, who will perform all of your landscaping needs. Here are some tips for finding a designer and company that is the right fit for you:
Before You Hire
Before you hire the first landscape designer and company you come across, it’s important to consider the following when making a decision about who to hire:
Have a Plan: Having a plan, even a rough draft, of what you’d like for landscaping will save you time and money when meeting with a designer. Even if you aren’t entirely sure of what you’d like, it’s good to brainstorm a few ideas. A good designer and company will tell you what will and won’t work for your yard.
Start Planning Early: If you have your heart set on a specific date for a landscaping project to be finished, such as a family gathering or a backyard wedding, it’s important to start contacting designers and companies early. Popular designers are often in high demand, so if you want him or her to do the work, you need to act sooner than later.
Set a Budget: Like most major house and yard projects, it’s a good idea to set a budget for yourself before you start deconstructing. You may notice when searching for a landscape designer and company, that some are more expensive than others. While it’s not always the case, the companies that cost more will probably produce a better, long lasting product. Once you’ve set your budget, be sure that the designers and companies you speak with know that you are firm on what you can afford.
A Little Background Research: The Internet is an excellent resource when looking for businesses and services in your local area and reading reviews online is much more convenient than relying on word of mouth from family and friends. When reading reviews about landscaping designers and companies, try to be objective and take advice with a grain of salt. Pay attention to red flags, but be open to considering a company who hasn’t received rave reviews across the board.
Choose a Designer Who is Positive
Even though you may know very little about landscaping, it’s important to find a designer who will be positive about some of the ideas that you come up with and help you fine tune ones that have potential. Your landscaping should be enjoyable and make you happy and confident in your investment. If you find a designer who only wants to use his or her ideas or isn’t willing to listen to your feedback, it’s not likely that you will be happy with the finished product.
Selecting Someone with Experience
An experienced landscape designer will typically offer more ideas and is likely to have a better idea of what will work best for your yard. You will notice that there are landscape designers who have had formal education, with a degree in Horticulture, and others who have had no educational training but years of experience. Ask to see a portfolio and ask about their experiences. Although a landscape designer with little experience may do excellent work, he or she may have a different skill level than what you’re looking for with your landscaping.
If you are like millions of other homeowners, you love the look of landscaping, but you want something that is low maintenance and eco-friendly. Some landscaping companies use chemicals, while others use methods, such as sustainable landscaping, that require little maintenance and no chemicals. It comes down to personal preference, but make sure you choose a designer and company who practices what’s important to you.
Get the Details of the Job in Writing
You wouldn’t let a contractor build an addition on your home without signing a contract first, and you shouldn’t treat landscaping any differently. A professional landscape designer and company should have you sign a contract and have all of the details of the project in writing. He or she should also communicate any changes and have some kind of warranty or promise for the work he or she does.
Hiring a landscaping designer and company can take the stress, worry, and risk of messing up away from a big landscaping project rather than struggling to do the project yourself. A good designer will help you create a space that you can enjoy for many years to come.