There are few home improvements that a homeowner can undertake that add as much increased value and marketability to a property as dramatically as landscaping does. Professional landscaping provides a number of remarkable benefits. According to studies done by the Florida Nursery Growers and Landscape Association, landscaping can actually increase property value by 14 to 20 percent. A simple landscaped patio can add an additional 12.4 percent to the value of a home. Even smaller projects can raise the value of the property significantly; landscaped curbs add up to 4.4 percent in value and the addition of hedges raises value by as much as 3.6 percent. Landscaped properties also sell an average of six weeks faster.
Even owners who are not thinking about selling their properties any time soon, if ever, can reap the benefits of landscaping. Of course, having a gorgeous landscape helps to make a house feel more like a home and provides an outlet for outdoor recreation for the family. Landscaping can increase the privacy of a property and make a home more secure from intrusion.
There are monetary benefits to landscaping, as well. A well-designed landscape can actually help to lower heating and cooling expenses. Homes with insulating hedges and shading trees near windows that get maximum sun exposure have been shown to decrease their energy usage for heating and air conditioning by close to 20 percent.
Though landscaping may have the potential to raise the value of your property by 20 percent while lowering your energy use by another 20 percent, these maximum values can only be achieved by a well designed, installed and maintained landscape. Even the most ardent do-it-yourselfer can fall short when it comes to creating and maintaining the perfect landscape. It takes a skilled eye and a thorough understanding of plants, placement and environment to get the best results from landscaping.
Using a professional landscaping service is the best way to make sure that your home's landscape is functional and provides the maximum value for your investment. A professional landscape maintenance service is also the best means of making sure that your investment is protected. Most landscape services are relatively inexpensive and the cost of using a professional is only a fraction of the cost of replacing improperly installed or maintained landscape features.
Picking the Right Service
Your landscape is an investment and when it comes to choosing a qualified professional you really want to give the decision just as much consideration as you would in selecting an investment banker or stock broker. Just because someone owns a landscaping service doesn't mean they are qualified to meet your needs.
There are 3 main things to consider when selecting your landscaping service. First, find someone local. National chain services have their place, but only a local will know the intricacies of your local environment and what plants work best there. Secondly, go with a full-time service. You wouldn't use a stockbroker who was really a dentist and only involved himself in the market on weekends. Using a full-time landscaper insures that you are using someone who is completely knowledgeable and qualified in the landscaping business. Thirdly, make sure the service you use is insured. Even the pros have accidents now and again. Insurance will help to protect you, your property and your investment.