Designing home landscapes to be: Ecologically rich Comfortably livable Energy efficient Inviting to wildlife Naturally beautiful.
Why Hire a Landscape Architect?
Like many homeowners, you may believe that the main purpose of landscape design is to beautify your property. Faced with numerous demands on your financial resources, you may view landscape planning as a luxury or a cosmetic extra.
However, while the results of landscape planning may indeed be beautiful, the true value of this investment goes far beyond aesthetics. A carefully-designed landscape is no more a luxury than your house’s firm foundation, solid walls and weather-tight roof. Hiring a landscape professional may seem like a major investment, but it is one that will return your expense in many ways, and for many years. Read on to learn more about how.
Create a harmonious fit
In a well-planned landscape, the good experiences of home extend beyond the walls of the building: your home’s entranceways are convenient and inviting; your windows face pleasing views; outdoor living spaces offer both refuge and outlook; cars approach and park without difficulty. A good landscape enhances the beauty of your home without overpowering it, so the house looks as comfortable on the site as do the trees, shrubs and stones.
As the result of good planning, landscape features and the ground itself are shaped to protect and celebrate the character of your property.
Prevent problems and minimize harm
Do you have porches and patios that are too cold for comfort? Front steps steep and awkward to use? An eroding driveway? Paths full of puddles? No comfortable place to sit outdoors? Overgrown plants and gardens that need constant care? Something vaguely uncomfortable about the yard? Beyond being inconvenient, these problems can lead to injury, expensive repair, reduced re-sale value, or just a pervasive sense of disappointment in your home environment.
Your landscape is a system of many interconnected parts and relationships. Beyond repairing obvious problems, landscape planning considers every aspect of the site, including potential or hidden problems, and provides solutions that protect your property and the people who use it.
Work within a budget
Any large project is most successful when goals are clarified and a budget is created. Planning your landscape is no exception. When you know what you want and what you want to spend, you avoid last-minute decisions, impulse purchases, and “buy now, pay later” thinking—actions that invariably lead to cost overruns and projects that can’t be completed due to lack of funds.
After you’ve invested time and money in improving your landscape, nothing is more discouraging than realizing, too late, that some essential fact was forgotten or overlooked and the final result is now unfortunately flawed. Even if you choose not to implement every element of a landscape plan at once—and many homeowners proceed in stages as time and money allow—the plan will help you accomplish just what you wish within the parameters of your own lifestyle and budget.
Increase property value
A properly designed and executed landscape plan adds value to your property in several ways. The first that most often comes to mind is aesthetic. And it’s true that a good plan will make your house look good from the curb as well as enhancing views from within the house.
More importantly, however, a plan that has been designed to correct or prevent problems means that damage has been minimized or avoided, costly repairs are unlikely, and the structural soundness of the entire property has been demonstrably maintained. Finally, just as improvements to the interior of the home add value by improving the quality of life, exterior improvements such as outdoor living spaces, safe play areas, and thoughtful approaches to the flow of people in and out will increase the livability of your home and its value to others.