Choosing the right landscaping design professional to improve your outdoor area can be challenging at the best of times and it is important to find the right company for the project.
But what exactly can a landscape designer or architect do for you and your property?
The experts at custom landscaping Toronto and M.E. Landscaping can lead you through the process from start to finish, including what to look for in a landscape designer. Besides the overall aesthetics of matching a design with your property, a landscape architect can recommend the right set of materials and products, and develop a custom design that utilizes existing elements of your outdoor property, including water, grass and open spaces, gardens, rocks, and other features.
Find a Quality Landscape Design Professional
Finding a good landscaping design professional isn’t as difficult as it seems if you follow these simple steps:
- Put together a list of three to five landscape architects in your area, preferably someone who holds a bachelor’s or master’s degree from a college or university accredited by the Canadian Society of Landscape Architects.
- Call each landscaping design professional on your list and schedule an on-site consultation. The sooner you can get someone on your property to start brainstorming ideas, the better.
- Don’t be shy about clearly communicating your design goals and your budget. While you are hiring a professional for a reason, you control the budget and any designer worth his or her weight will appreciate you articulating your goals and having a budget from the get-go.
- The key to managing a successful business relationship where you are the customer is making sure you have references. Ask for 2-3 references in your area, and ask to see pictures of similar projects, and be upfront about needing details regarding the designer’s experience and philosophy on landscape design.
- Verify each landscaping design professional’s licensing and credentials. Too many consumers get taken in by “professionals” who claim experience and certification that turn out to be bogus, and the experts at custom landscaping Toronto encourage you to ask for proof of qualifications before signing any contract.
- Remember, some landscaping design professionals are also sales people at heart, so don’t be afraid to ask for a bid on your project. That way your objectives will be clearly understood, and you can put a timeframe on when a bid needs to be submitted. Make sure the bid requires a detailed list of materials and supplies, a timeline for completion, and any fees associated with sub-contractors. At this point, you also may want to consider adding a clause to award a small bonus if the project meets certain goals.
Some Final Tips to Consider
Hiring a landscaping design professional should never be taken lightly, and please remember the old adage that “you get what you pay for.” Because of the money you are prepared to spend, you have certain expectations about the end result, which can vary between the designers and services you ultimately choose. Setting a budget, spelling out goals, and establishing a timeline are three keys to making your project a success, but so is understanding what you’re getting into and establishing a comfort level with the winning bidder. Once those issues are settled, all we can say is “It’s time to design.”