You probably have been gauging costs instinctively during the planning stages. Now it is time to work up specific figures.
Real-estate agents consider it reasonable to spend 10 to 15 percent of the cost of the house and lot on landscaping, not including such large improvements as pools and patio roofs.
If you keep your landscaping costs in this range, most of the expense is likely to boost the value of your property. Some of the work, too, will immediately or eventually reduce the costs of heating and cooling. And all will make an appreciable difference in your quality of life, comfort, and health.
Most plans will call for some work that is beyond the capability, time, or desire of the homeowner to do personally. See page 28 for available help. Then check your local Yellow Pages. Begin talking to contractors or doing some comparison shopping for materials.
To get a realistic picture of costs, generally you're best off doubling any number you come up with initially. Figure you can save about half of the hired cost if you do a job yourself, if you can. Stinting on such things as erosion control, walls, utilities, and such could cost you more in the long run or jeopardize your family's safety.
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How would you like to save a ton of money and increase the value of your home by as much as thirty percent! If your homes landscape is designed properly it will be a source of enjoyment for your entire family, it will enhance your community and add to the resale value of your property. Landscape design involves much more than placing trees, shrubs and other plants on the property. It is an art which deals with conscious arrangement or organization of outdoor space for human satisfaction and enjoyment.