If you're a homeowner who doesn't fancy performing landscaping tasks yourself, you might want to consider hiring a landscape professional. Since not all landscaping companies and contractors are created equal, it is in your best interest to know what to look for before you hire an individual or crew. Possessing the obvious credentials, as well as being licensed and insured, are a given. Before you sign a contract for residential landscaping, take note of the following seven areas of distinction or hallmarks of a good professional:
1. The Landscaping Company or Contractor Owns Their Own Equipment
Do the landscapers rent their tools and equipment? Do they require the clients to provide their own? This can be inconvenient to you as a client.
You could incur added expense if you have to purchase the tools needed for your project. This may be wasteful if you won't be using the supplies or tools for future projects. For the best experience, choose a landscaping firm or contractor that owns and provides their own tools, supplies and equipment. This should also include company vehicles.
2. The Landscaping Firm Will Employ Horticulturists and Other "Specialists"
Horticulturists will have extensive knowledge of plant life and disease. If you are experiencing a particular issue involving your trees or plants, a specialist may offer you assurance. Specialists may know about cultivation and crop production. An arborist or tree surgeon may also be employed by a landscaping firm. These specialists can be of assistance with pruning and other needs.
3. References From Satisfied Clients, Along With Sample Photos of Completed Work
Not only will a top-notch landscaping company provide several references for you, they will provide samples of completed projects. This will help you to judge the quality of the work. In some cases, these references will permit potential clients to see the completed work in person. At the very least, expect to see several photographs of the completed landscaping work.
4. The Landscaper Will Provide a Rough Sketch or Drawing Plan
Reputable landscaping bidders will provide drawing plans of their proposals. In most cases, there will not be a charge to see the plans, although you may not be permitted to keep the sketches.
5. A Full Scope of Residential Services Are Offered
This is a true hallmark of a quality landscaping firm. It's best not to use a landscaper that is limited in the services that are offered. Most quality professionals will offer to complete small and large tasks and projects, as well as provide on-going services. The crew or individual contractor should be experienced in all aspects of landscaping, including installation, building, lawn care and maintenance.
A top-notch landscaper will provide services such as landscape lighting, patios and walkway paving, and constructing terraced gardens and waterfalls. The quality team may also install residential sprinkler and irrigation systems.
6. The Landscaper Will Stay on Your Property Until Completion
Many homeowners don't take kindly to having workers leave their premises during ongoing work in order to attend to another project. A quality landscaping service will not transport their crew members between job sites during ongoing work. A good landscaper will stay on site until the work is completed.
7. Warranties Will Be Provided for Plants, Tress and Shrubs
Yes, you can expect a warranty on services, but what about products? A top-notch landscaping company will guarantee the plants they provide. This typically will be separate from the guarantee on completed work.
Keep these attributes in mind when hiring a landscaper for your lawn or garden. Your home's aesthetic or "curb appeal" adds value to your property, therefore you should hire the right professionals for the job.