Questions to Ask When Hiring a Landscape Contractor
1. How long have you been in business?
If a landscape company has been doing business for a number of years in the same area, chances are they’re providing quality work and good customer service. An experienced landscape contractor will be able to provide you with photos of completed projects, as well as references from past clients.
2. What kind of education, training, and experience does your team have?
Be careful not to base your decision of who to hire based solely on the lowest price quote. This may mean that they simply use cheaper labor to get the work done. Designers should have a design background; patio and driveway installers should have pavement installer certifications, and so on. And the entire team should have as much experience as possible, particularly in the type of features you’re considering for your property.
3. Do you have a portfolio of completed projects that I can see?
A picture is worth a thousand words. And lots of pictures usually mean lots of experience. Plus, by browsing their portfolio, you’ll get some great ideas for your own property.
4. Can you provide letters of reference from satisfied clients?
When a customer takes time out of their schedule to write a letter of recommendation that speaks volumes. Always ask for references.
5. Are you a member in good standing of the Better Business Bureau (BBB)?
If so, you can easily check the BBB web site to see whether or not they have had any complaints. If they’re not a member, it can be hard to tell if other customers have had a hard time with this firm in the past.
6. What kind of insurance do you carry, and can I see proof of insurance before you begin work at my home?
You will want to make sure that any damage that may occur during installation – to property or to people – is covered.
7. What industry certifications do you have?
Educational and training programs, which lead to professional certifications, are widely available in the landscape industry. Choose a company that has invested in the training and certification of its team.
8. Will your crews clean up their mess?
Building a retaining wall, installing a patio, and planting trees can be quite messy. It often involves bringing in sand, dirt and other materials, and sometimes operating heavy equipment that can leave tire marks. As the customer you should not be the one to bring your property back to its original appearance.