7 Things to Know Before Hiring a Landscaper
With spring and beautiful weather finally here, it may be time to hire a professional landscaper to tame your yard and give you a lawn you can be proud of. Before you hire the first landscaper you find with a nice truck, take a look at all the things you need to know before making your decision.
Are They Licensed?
Does this landscaper hold a valid state license or other certification from a professional organization? The answer matters a great deal. If you choose someone without a license, it means that you have little or no recourse if they fail to perform or cause major damage to your property.
Are They Insured?
A landscaping company should have, at minimum, two types of insurance: workers’ compensation and liability insurance. Workers’ compensation will cover any workers who are injured while working on your property. Liability insurance will cover the cost of any damage done to your home. They should have a minimum of $1 million in liability coverage. Ask for proof of insurance as part of your hiring process.
Are They Bonded?
A bond is similar to insurance and can often be a requirement as part of licensing. A surety bond means that if the landscaping company fails to complete the job or to perform the duties they were hired to do, you’ll be compensated.
How Much Experience Do They Have?
It’s okay to ask how many years they’ve been in business and what kind of experience they have. This isn’t just about the years of experience, but have they done the work you’re asking them to do? Get references and check them.
What Kind of Guarantee Will They Offer?
For any large landscaping project, like a new patio, fence, or retaining wall, they should offer at least a two year guarantee of their work, although five years would be better. You’ll have to ask if they offer warranties on the plants. They should also make sure you know how to care for your new plants to keep them healthy and beautiful for as long as possible.
Who Pulls the Necessary Permits?
Your landscaping company should take care of this, but always ask. You don’t want there to be any confusion in the middle of the job about who was supposed to do what.
Will They Help You Create a Plan?
Some landscaping companies want to perform a basic service like mowing your lawn and trimming your hedges. Others can help you create a plan to improve your yard and have the knowledge, tools, and staff to make that plan a reality. Depending on what your goals are for your yard, this is a good question to ask.
Your yard is as important to your home as your living room or kitchen. It can help increase the value of your home, and makes a statement about you as a homeowner. When you’re ready to hire a landscaper, make sure you do your homework and find the right company for you.