It really doesn’t matter if you are extremely wealthy or middle class. When you are taking on a large landscaping project yourself or you’re hiring a landscape contractor to install your landscaping, a budget must be considered.
We all have our dream list of things we desire and feel we need in our landscape, but can we afford them? Landscaping can be expensive, especially if you are considering adding any hardscape elements. Hardscapes include retaining walls, flagstone or paver patios, seat walls, water features, block fencing, brick work, boulders or simply put, anything hard and permanent.
Hardscaping can cost many dollars per square foot. So, the landscape budget is a must.
Much of the time, my clients want the whole dream list, but when they get the estimate, they are quite discouraged. I try to ask for a budget, but usually they hesitate. Thinking somehow this will compromise getting a good deal. They don’t realize landscaping costs that much and they don’t have any idea of what they are getting into. I’ve done many estimates for my clients in which landscape designers have designed the landscape. Many landscape designers neglect the budget process with their clients. The plans were exceptional. Paver patios, walls, and water features, beautiful plantings and the list goes on and on. The budget however wasn’t ever considered. The design, the bidding process was a waste of time. The potential client just couldn’t afford the package as designed. If only a budget was considered from the beginning, the design could have been scaled down to a landscape they could afford and attain.
Don’t be afraid to talk budget with your designer or landscaper. Once you develop a good relationship with them, please talk about what you can afford as well as what you want. The shock will go out from the estimating process.
The landscape budget process also makes the estimating easier for all. However you must make sure all bids are apples to apples. Make sure quantities and sizes for each landscape proposal are the same. If one landscape contractor is installing a 200 square foot patio and the other a 180 square foot patio there may be a difference of $300.00 in costs. Keep it apples to apples. The quantities and sizes should compare all through the landscape estimate. A smaller lawn is less money. Less soil mix is less money. Smaller sizes in plant material means less money. However, as you may have noticed each bid item is getting less product. It is up to you the homeowner to make sure you are in fact getting the best price, product and service.
Believe it or not it can sometimes be cheaper to have a landscape contractor install a sprinkler system or block fencing than you could do it yourself. I learned this personally the hard way in my younger years. Sometimes it just pays to pay a professional!
Legacy Lawn and Landscape LLC. has been serving the Pacific Northwest with exceptional landscape services for over fifteen years. We are here to help you realize your landscape dreams.