by Dwayne Regehr
I like statistics. They help me make sense of the world. When I read that Canadians are on average putting away 10 to 15 percent of their income into retirement savings I find this reassuring. With a little discipline I should be able to retire one day.
But I find it problematic when I read articles declaring that homeowners should be prepared to put a certain percentage of the cost of their house into landscaping. There was a time when I gladly quoted "stats" from various internet sources saying you should spend at least 10% of your property value on landscaping. $500K house? "Absolutely you should spend $50,000 on your landscaping. We can help you with that!" And what about the articles claiming that landscaping improvements will provide a 75% to 85% return on your investment when you sell your house. It may be possible to recoup a significant portion of your investment in landscaping, but there are no guarantees. No guarantees that future home buyers will have the same tastes in landscaping that you do. No guarantees that the fabulous outdoor kitchen you are building this year will still be considered a "must have" in 5 years when you want to sell.
These "rules" of landscaping investment are usually pulled out of thin air by sales people wanting more of your money. Every property and individual is different, and every home buyer will see value in different places. Our goal at Earthworks is to provide you with a yard that fits your budget and your lifestyle – and that gives you some pleasure and encourages you to get outside for a bit each day.
If you are a first time homeowner, odds are that you spent a larger portion of your budget on the house itself, so money is a little tight. It is also more likely that you will be selling in the not-so-distant future. For you, we will focus on function. You'll likely want a simple, attractive yard that will offer enjoyment in the short term, will be easy to maintain and will improve curb appeal when it comes time to sell.
If however, you have just purchased your dream home, and have no intentions of moving on, let's have some fun! You don't have to worry about current "trends" because this yard is being designed for you, not a future buyer. If you are a gardener, let's give you some space to play in the garden. If cooking and entertaining is your passion, why not splurge on an outdoor kitchen with a large patio to accommodate your guests? If your greatest pleasure is to curl up with a good book, we can create an intimate, secluded space where you can disappear into the literary world.
The salesman in me loves the "rules" that say you should be spending more on your landscaping project, but in the end I get the most enjoyment from giving you the kind of outdoor space that you want and need.
If you would like to talk more about you landscaping plans send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We'd love to work with you.
We thoroughly enjoyed working with Dwayne and his team. His knowledge and expertise provided the perfect conclusion to our summer yard overhaul project. We would strongly recommend Earthworks forRead more … your next landscaping project. You won't be disappointed.
We are very happy with our new yard. They were able to come out earlier than expected and were happy to accommodate us when we made some changes to the original plan. I will definitely callRead more … Earthworks Landscaping for future projects.
On time, on budget as promised. Dwayne and his crew worked hard and left nothing behind. The grass looks great, the deck is amazing. We tested it this weekend with a group of family members,Read more … nobody fell through!
Very happy with the experience. The thought and care given to the creative side of our sidewalk and patio design was much appreciated and impressive. Dwayne took time to find out our style-then madeRead more … great suggestions on how our cobbles could flow to create the look we wanted. This was very important to me. The job came in on-time, on budget, and is gorgeous. I also very much appreciate the follow up from Earthworks to ensure the flagstone has remained properly seated. I highly recommend Earthworks if you're looking for excellent craftsmanship and not a "kit install" - you will get something unique and creative from from Dwayne and his team.