If you’re planning on a landscape project, one of the most important decisions you’ll make is whether to hire a landscape architect, designer or contractor. Their expertise and knowledge may be of the same levels, but their areas of focus sure vary considerably.
Indeed, it can be hard to differentiate these three landscape professionals even while remaining distinct from one another. To clear the confusion, many design-build firms hire architects and designers internally to handle everything, from design, to installation to maintenance; other architects and designers, on the other hand, hire their own contractors. You can also hire a landscape designer or architect to create a plan for you, and then have them recommend a Good contractor. In most cases, when you hire a landscape contractor, all design work will be part of the deal.
So the question is, how do you decide whether to hire a landscape architect, designer or contractor? The answer depends on a few factors, particularly your budget, the size and timeline of your project, and the complexity of the job. But believe it or not, there’s a fifth factor, which is generally considered the ultimate litmus test: personality fit.
You’ll need a landscape professional who is receptive to your ideas, suggestions or goals, and will work with a schedule that is comfortable to you. They should spend time inspecting your property and asking you questions, such as what elements you want in the design (for example, bamboo outdoor furniture), how you plan to use the area (for instance, reading a book or dining with the family or with guests), or what overall ambiance you want for this part of your home). Of course, if they think that what you want isn’t very wise or possible at all, they will give you their professional opinion.
Whether you’re searching for a landscape pro or any other service provider, your best route is always a personal recommendation. So ask relatives, friends or coworkers if they’ve worked with a good one recently. Another thing you can do is explore online directories that various industry associations maintain for public use. Ask about your prospects’ licenses, certifications and professional affiliations, and always request proof. All proposals you consider should be given to you in writing, and make sure you understand all the terms and conditions, and fees.
Even if you intend to do this project on your own, you should still seek the guidance of experts. After all, they’re not called that for nothing. And of course, since this will probably not be cheap, you’d like to ensure that it will be done right the first time around.