Finding The Best Landscape Contractors

A landscape contractor is a skilled artist who creates gorgeous landscapes customized to your desires. I don’t mean painting the exterior of your house either. What I mean is the curbside appeal that good landscaping brings.

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Not to mention, good landscaping can up the value of your home and bring you peace with your own gorgeous escape. What better way to achieve that perfect landscape than with landscape contractors

What Are Landscape Contractors?

Landscape contracting is defined as “a profession that involves the art and technology of landscape and garden project planning, construction and landscape management, and maintenance and gardening; for garden aesthetics, human enjoyment and safety, and ecosystem-plant community sustainability.”

Many colleges of agriculture offer landscape contracting degrees, licenses, and courses. It’s a great profession for those interested in landscaping and a great place to look for those who need help with landscaping. 

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What Do Landscape Contractors Do?

Landscape contractors have a variety of services they offer. Each landscaping contractor has a different set of services. Some do all of the things listed below while others do less. Then there are special occasions where they do even more! 

Although there may be a lot more services overall, only a few are used every day in America. Here are some of the most common services that landscape contractors have to offer:

  • Clear land – landscape contractors do a wonderful job at clearing land, tearing out roots, and giving you a good base to work with. Sometimes, it ends here, but if you’re lucky, this is just the beginning. 
  • Grade land – grading land has nothing to do with a score. Land grading is a leveling of the surface by bringing dirt from higher up and moving it to lower ground. This lets you create level land without any additional dirt.
  • Survey draining systems – a landscaping contractor can let you know if your drainage system is safe and if there are any changes you need to make. Sometimes, this is all they do and they leave the work for someone else. 
  • Install draining systems – most surveyors who are landscaping contractors will also offer installation services. They can install a new drain that is usually something similar to a French drain system. 
  • Build decks and patios – some landscape contractors even build decks and patios. This is because though house contractors can do a good job at this, landscaping contractors have different focuses. 
  • Build retaining walls retaining walls can really transform your outdoor space. They create different levels, give space for curbside gardens, and give a unique look to your landscape. And there are so many ways to build them! 

More Services

  • Create walkways and driveways – creating walkways and driveways is one of the most difficult things for us to do alone and one of the easiest things for a landscape contractor to do. This is exactly what professionals are for! 
  • Design landscapes – if you want to create your own landscape, landscape contractors can help you design and plan it out. Or, on the other hand, you can design it and they can create it for you.
  • Plan and plant gardens – even if all you want is a small garden, a landscape contractor can make or for you. They can help you plant what can grow in your area and find out where to buy them for you.
  • Plant other plants and trees – no matter what kind of tree or plant you want in your yard, a landscaping contractor can help you. They can create gorgeous landscapes with nothing but greenery.
  • Plan a natural fertilization system – if you are tired of chemicals being in your life, a landscaping contractor can help you create an au naturel system. Even when it comes to fertilizer.
  • Audit water use – you may be afraid of the word “audit” when it comes to legal areas of your life, but in this case, it’s a good thing. A water audit is just a way to help you use water more efficiently. 

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How To Find Landscape Contractors Near Me

Finding a landscaping contractor near you can be a lot of work. But at times, it is necessary to hire one. It depends on where you live, but in California, if your project costs more than $500, the contractor must be licensed by the state. 

In order to ensure the contractor you have your eye on is licensed, you can call the state license board. They can verify them with a license number, company name, or the name of the individual in question. 

What To Look For After Verification

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The most important thing to do is make sure that the contractor is licensed. After that, it’s time to look at the small things that most people will miss without guidance. Make a checklist and take a look at these notes.

Note: not all states have licenses, so asking for credentials instead is preferable. Find out what your state requires before looking for contractors near you. This is similar to the way you’d find a moving company near you.

Landscape Contractor Portfolios

This is crucial! Though it can feel nice to give a newbie a chance, it’s better if they have at least one project to show. Even if it was done for friends and families. It’s important for every landscaper to have examples.

Tip: reverse search images to find out if they have been used before. If they have, then make sure they were posted by the contractor. If not, there’s a chance the images aren’t even theirs, to begin with.

Landscape Contractor Reviews 

Reviews are extra important. If there are no reviews to be found, ask the landscape contractor if you can speak with previous clients. If they won’t let you, then forget about it and find another that will. 

Landscape Contractor About Me Pages

Make sure their website has a biography or about me page. This isn’t always trustworthy because they can put whatever they want here, but it does show that they are professional and they care about who they are.

Landscape Contractor Videos Or Articles

If you can find articles or videos written by the contractor, this is a good sign. It means they want to share their knowledge with the world and make a difference, even if they don’t get paid for it. Personal blogs are a plus!

Landscape Contractor Stamps On Website

If there are BBB stamps on the site or those from government officials, this is great. It means they have been certified! But make sure the stamps are real by searching them on sites outside of their own or contacting the company directly. 

How To Get A Landscape Contractors License

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If you are planning on getting a landscaping contractor’s license, then good for you! We need more great landscapers in today’s world. You can use the tips above afterward to ensure you appear trustworthy. 

Many colleges offer great agricultural degrees that can get you started. Though some states allow you to get a certificate by completing a program. Not all states have official landscape contractors’ licenses. 

Choosing A Specialization

While it is possible to be well-versed in all things landscaping, it’s a good idea to pick a “minor” since you’ve already picked a good “major.” Here are a few options you can choose from, or you can create your own.

All Things Green

Choosing to focus on horticulture is a great idea. Not only does it open a lot of doors for you, but it can help you better the planet by learning all you can about different climates and plants. This is necessary for most landscape contractors. 

Architectural 

If you prefer to build decks and patios, this is the job for you. Get an architectural degree and work from there. Put your focus into landscaping and become the best landscaping architecture in your area.

Maintenance

This may sound petty to you but it is the most popular type of landscape contractor. Because while not everyone needs a new deck or garden, everyone needs repairs done every once in a while. Just make sure to offer competitive prices. 

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Recreational

If you like to have a little fun with your job, becoming a recreational contractor is a good idea. Not only will you make dreams come true but you will put a smile on every child’s face in the home. This type of contractor builds pools and more. 

Interiors

A lot of people forget that indoor landscaping exists. But it does! You can create indoor gardens, windowsill woodlands, and more. This is perfect for apartment living and is a great thing to offer clients without yards.

When To Become A Landscape Contractor

While hiring a professional is great, being that professional for others can be even more rewarding. The thing is, you don’t have to have a degree to be one. You can offer your services with minimal licensing in most states.

Start small, by practicing with family and friends, or even in your own yard. Help them turn their outdoor spaces into fairytale dreams. All you need is a little bit of knowledge and a love for all things outdoors.