People typically embark on home renovation projects with a mind toward increasing the value of their home for resale purposes. However, while changes to your home’s structure can depreciate through the years, landscaping improvements increase in value over time.
The initial cost of installing plant material is directly proportional to the size and age of the plant.
Think of planting a small tree for around $80. As that tree matures over time and grows to 30 feet becoming a major lawn feature, its value (replacement cost) can grow to more than $1,000.
If instant gratification is not an issue, there is tremendous value in installing well-planned, good-quality plant material to reap its value as the landscaping matures.
The American Society of Landscape Architects suggests that property owners spend about 5 to 10 percent of the home’s value on landscaping. This, of course, includes the cost of cultivating the gardens and installing plants, as well as hardscape features such as patios, lighting, arbors, paths and water features.
Why You Need a Landscaping Plan
Given the magnitude of such an investment, homeowners should probably consider investing in a landscape plan. New homeowners typically set aside a budget for home improvements and renovations.
Landscaping, however, often is saved for “down the road,” but smart planning can take years to implement.
Therefore, it's beneficial to have a professional evaluate the landscape, develop a master plan and provide advice on how to stage changes to the property at the very outset.
Ignorance about health and viability of mature trees on the property can have very costly and devastating effects, as terrible storms have demonstrated.
In fact, the landscape industry includes subset niches for those who provide professional consultation about landscapes or coaching.
That large stand of bamboo shielding you from the neighbors could also be a landscape nightmare because certain bamboo is extremely invasive and quite costly and difficult to remove.
If you enjoy gardening, a trained landscape designer can guide your DIY projects so that you incorporate plants best suited to your area, cultural conditions and maintenance abilities.
Homeowners intent on taking the landscape into their own hands often fall victim to one of the biggest pitfalls of landscaping: proceeding without a coherent plan.
Their piecemeal approach often leads to a disorganized landscape with a hodgepodge of favorite plantings with no harmony, unity or polish. Implementing a coherent plan can enable development of a harmonious landscape while remaining within budget.
An attractive and interesting landscape, or curb appeal, is the first thing that potential homebuyers see, and it may govern their interest in looking inside.
But even if increasing the value of your property is of minor importance, the satisfaction and enjoyment of a nicely designed landscape can improve the quality of your life and those who surround you.