A Preparation Checklist For Your Next Landscape Project

There are a lot of things to consider when hiring for your landscape project, especially in the desert. A Phoenix landscape project can have a very specific style and not every landscaper has the right eye or experience level for it. With the combination of landscaping and hardscaping, designers are dealing with a lot of elements. There are several key things to look for when you are in the market for a new backyard design. You want to make sure your landscaper knows what they’re doing, understands what you want, and has the know-how to get the job done. At CYC Landscaping, we’ve got over two decades of experience, so we know exactly what you need to do to get the ball rolling. 

Landscape Pictures 

First things first, you need to know what you want. Whether you’re a first-time homeowner or an old pro at renovations you no doubt have an aesthetic of your own. There are a lot of subtleties for Phoenix landscape projects, so it’s important to do your homework. 

Luckily, it is easy to get good ideas for your landscape project. Look over some websites. Local realtors, upcoming housing developments, and established Phoenix-based landscapers are great places to get some references. Even websites like Pinterest could be a good starting place for things like backyard design. 

Better yet, take a walk around your own neighborhood. Get a feel for what you do and don’t like the look of from your own street. The next time you’re driving around town, keep an eye out for a bit of hardscaping that would look good in your own yard and snap a picture. Collect yourself a nice little reference library of landscaping inspiration. 

Landscape Project Priorities

Once you know what you like, start to pare that down. Figure out what is a must-have for your backyard design and what probably wouldn’t work in your space. Create your own little wish list of hardscaping. 

Do as much comparison between the pictures you’ve taken as you need. Phoenix landscape projects can look a lot alike, but there are always standouts and eye-catchers. You don’t want to end up with something too subtle. Figuring out what you want before looking for a landscaper will also help you find the right company for the job. 

Landscapers will have their own set of ideas for any given project, but it’s your yard. You don’t have to be an expert, but you do have to know what you do and don’t want. Once you have your list of priorities set up you’re one step closer to getting the yard of your dreams. 

Proper Landscape Project Installation 

Now you have a look in mind and a list of things you want, it’s time to look for a landscaper. But even that part of the process has several steps to consider. The number one thing you want to know is that your landscaper can do the job. 

A big part of a Phoenix landscape project involves pavers. Either on side yards or hardscaping paths in backyard design, pavers are popular. But at least half of the pavers out there are installed incorrectly. You wouldn’t want a plumber who uses the wrong-sized pipes, the same goes for landscapers. 

A lot goes into a landscape project. Not just the look, but the actual function of your yard. Pavers, firepits, watering systems, which plants will work in your yard and even survive the Arizona summers—these are all things a proper landscaper should have down pat. Proper installation for any part of landscaping is nonnegotiable.

Project Collaboration 

You want to find a landscaper who will work with you. Partnering with a landscaper who will listen to you will always pay off. They’ve got the expertise, but you are the one who will be looking at their work every day. A designer who knows everything there is to know but doesn’t listen is no friend to prospective clients. 

Be on the lookout for designers trying to cut corners. If you start to talk about what you want and they are only interested in the cheapest option, it might not be the best fit. Make sure you’re getting what you want that first your budget, not theirs.

The right landscaper will listen to what you want, not just sell you what they want. Doing things cheaply and doing things in a cost-effective way are two completely different things, and you want the latter. A good landscaper will understand what you want, lend feedback, and deliver. 

Landscape Project Experience 

It is hard to argue the value of experience. Odds are, the longer you’ve been at something the better you’ll be at it. An experienced landscaper will have the skillset you need and references to back them up. Bringing on a more experienced designer is basically a satisfaction guarantee. With landscapers who have years of hardscaping and backyard design behind them, there’s little you could want that they haven’t done before. 

Particularly in this part of the world, experience is key. Phoenix landscape projects are unlike anywhere else. The way designers use hardscaping is very distinct. Knowing how to complement the surrounding desert landscape in backyard design is a special talent. 

The amount of time a design company has been in the business also has a bearing on how warranties work. You know a 20-year-old company will be able to back their warranties. A fledgling organization might not make it in the long run and then that 5-year warranty is worthless. 

Landscaper Presentation 

We’ve all heard about the importance of a first impression. Believe it or not, the same thing applies to landscaping. Just because it’s an outdoor job doesn’t mean everything should be a mess. Pay attention to how they present themselves, both in and out of their office. 

Take a look at a few aesthetic things before the work begins. Does their team have a uniform look about them? Do they wear clothes with the company logo on them? What about the vehicle they bring to the job, is the car or truck clean? Does it share the company logo? 

You’re trusting your landscaper to make your yard beautiful, how they present themselves is important. It is easier to trust this large-scale project to people who put effort into their professional appearance. If they take the time to take care of themselves, you can bet they’ll give your backyard design a similar treatment. 

Landscaper’s Website

This one might seem simple, but it needs to be stated: check their website. A website says a lot about a company. A lot of the time, a website is the first point of contact. Take a look at what kind and how much information they are offering to the public. 

Landscaping is visual by nature, so make sure you take a look at their gallery. And they had better have a gallery. Read what some of their past clients have to say about their work. Learn more about exactly what kind of services they offer. If they don’t do something on your wish list then you know that designer is out of the running. 

You should be able to get a basic understanding of a company’s experience level from their website. Whether that’s through their gallery and testimonials or their own “about us” tab, you should be able to get to know your landscaper. And if they don’t have a website at all, it’s time to look elsewhere. 

There is more that goes into finding a landscape designer than just a quick Google search. There’s work you need to do before you’re even ready to consult the internet. It’s a long process but the right landscaper will make it worth the work. The landscaper you want should be competent and collaborative, as well as experienced and accessible. Put this checklist to use when you’re prepping to do a landscape project and you’ll be happy you did.

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