You have approved the final landscaping site plan of your architect or your landscape designer. Now it is time for building your project, so you need to hire a landscaping company. Landscape contractors and companies have different levels of experience and skillsets. So, below is a guide to help you hire the best landscaping contract for your project.
Where to look: To find your landscaping contractor, there are many ways. Doing an Internet search may not provide the best results; therefore, it is good to focus the search and look for a local company. You can check for a good company with your chamber of commerce or ask your neighbors and friends for reference.
You will want to hire a company that is simple to work with, reliable, and knowledgeable. Your main concern is to hire someone who can build your project on schedule and on time using best practices and quality materials. Ask the contractors for the following credentials:
- Licenses: Landscaping companies Calgary have licenses that are regulated by particular states. Your specific town may have added requirements for the contractor doing the work.
- Insurance: A good landscape company should have workers’ compensation insurance and general liability insurance. Ask for their insurance certificate.
- Photos displaying their work quality: Landscaping companies install paving, plantings, sod, seed, decks, fences, site walls, and more. Ask them to show photos of different projects that they have built already to show the quality of their building techniques.
- Client references: You should read the company’s or contractor’s client reviews or call some of their former clients to find out whether they were pleased with their services or not. Some questions you can ask the references include: Was your project finished on time? Was the company reliable? Were you satisfied with their work quality?
- Experience with similar work: Landscaping contractors work on an extensive variety of project types, but most of them focus their work on the level of work. It’s imperative because their team will get a level of know-how that is ideal for the staging and workflow of your project.
Find Who Will Supervise The Project
It is helpful to find out who will be the key players in building the project to know who you will speak with when the work progresses. The project supervisor is the individual accountable for leading the crews daily. He/she will be in charge of your project, one who you’ll communicate with onsite during the building procedure.
Review the Subcontractors
Most landscaping contractors count on specialty workers and artisanstoperform custom work and build components using special techniques and materials. Together with knowing who would supervise your work, you’d also wish to know who would be responsible for artisan work and specialty work to ensure that those people are fully qualified. You should ask them for detailed information about the qualifications of the subcontractors.
Ask About Their Sustainable Practices
The landscaping contractor would be disrupting your site and putting new materials that will impact your environment. Make the impact as less damaging as possible by making use of the most sustainable methods and materials possible. A few landscape companies have been applying environmental practices for years while many others are new to this concept. Let the contractor know if it matters to you.
You can find out how much the contractor is familiar with sustainable practices by asking the following questions:
- What sustainable and organic practices does your company use? If the contractor is hesitant in answering, try asking specific questions like those below.
- Where do you source the materials from? It’s best to use wood and stone for your project as this can help reduce the carbon footprint. Sourcing these local materials can also help you save money as you won’t need to pay for the materials to get them shipped from long distances.
- Do you use mulch free of additives and chemicals? Dyes and chemicals are used for making mulch in various colors and they are unnecessary additives. You should go chemical-free as chemical-free mulches usually are lessexpensive if you get them from local sources.
- Do you recycle the plant containers or do you return to the nursery? Most of the wholesale nurseries are known to take the plastic plant containers back and reuse them after cleaning. Though it may look to be a very small thing, those small containers can add up lots of plastic in the projects having large planted areas. The landscaping company is accountable for hauling the materials after the work is complete, so ensure that they are either taken back to the nursery and recycled.
- Do you use hand tools or power tools? Lots of jobs can be accomplished using hand tools and a few compact sites need to use these hand tools only over the motorized utility vehicles and power tools. Most of the contractors use a mix of both of them. If you have a small project, there will not be much need for power machinery.
Making the Decision
It is finally your choice to hire the company or contractor you prefer. Base your final decision on the combination of experience, qualifications, and cost of the work. The cheapest quote may not always be the best selection, nor maybe the contractor with the utmost experience. You should ensure to meet the prospective contractors personally. The company’s team or contractor may wish to walk through your property before offering a quote, so use that chance to meet and know how reliable and professional he/she is. If you’re vetting acreage landscaping Calgary contractors yourself, request them to visit your site and plan a short meeting to talk with them in person. You can perform a background check online or by talking with the company on phone.
Once you have made the selection, ensure to sign a contract with them that outlines the schedule for the project, scope of work, and warranty on all the plants.