An Ounce of Prevention


By Tony Catanzaro


The saying an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure can be applied to many aspects in the landscape. The one I want to focus on is when you are in the market for a new home. Regardless if it is a brand new home or a two hundred year old Victorian you would hire a professional home inspector to protect and educate you about any possible problems that may exist. The landscape is a very big part of the home’s value and appeal and should be thoroughly checked as well. I have spent countless hours with proud new home owners educating them about the problems I observe upon a visit for an estimate. More often then not they had no idea any problems existed in the landscape or how much it would cost to properly address the issue.


Very few people hire a landscape professional to inspect the condition of all the landscape elements before they purchase. A typical landscape inspection would include grading and drainage, retaining walls, walks, patios, decks, soils, turf, trees, shrubs, irrigation, driveway, and any other outdoor elements. Just because it is new does not mean it is built well.


Retaining walls are one of the costliest elements and unfortunately many are being installed improperly and may be subject to collapse. Mature trees are commonly damaged and backfilled during construction or expansion causing premature decline and death. Losing mature trees can be costly and will dramatically change the look of your “wooded lot”. Interlocking paving stones need to be checked for proper installation to ensure years of good service. Your landscape professional can point out many of these costly projects that may need to be addressed.


A landscape inspection can also help you understand the estimated costs of projects you would like to do with a new home but may not have a realistic idea of cost or what is involved. Some sites are better suited to particular needs and lifestyles. A steeply sloping lot may not be ideal for children and a flat lot my not lend itself for cascading water features and terraces. By gaining this insight before you purchase you could save tens of thousands of dollars trying to make a sight something it is not well suited for.


If you are planning a major landscape project like a pool, sports court, etc. You should investigate what permits and or variances you might need. Many landscape professionals offer to do this for you on a consulting basis. Why wait for after the closing to find out you can’t do what you want with your new home? A quick concept drawing from your landscape professional and a trip to the local municipal hall can answer a lot of questions as well as forge some important relationships.


When building or expanding your home call your landscape professional before breaking ground, Get advise on sighting the home on the lot. What trees to protect. How the expansion will affect existing landscaping and traffic flow.



So before you purchase your next home utilize the knowledge and experience of a landscape professional. By investing a few extra dollars for an inspection and consultation you could potentially save tens of thousands of dollars and many unwanted headaches.

Maintenance & Plowing

Regency Landscape offers high quality residential and commercial grounds maintenance and snow plowing services in the following towns:

• Long Hill Township
• Warren Township
• Bernards Township
• Bernardsville
• Berkeley Heights
• Watchung
• New Providence
• Surounding areas

Patio & Pavers

Regency knows that a well designed and installed paver project can add beauty and value to your home. Pavers may be used for eye pleasing patios, elegant pool skirts, meandering walkways and drive ways. Don't forget retaining walls and raised planting beds. The possiblities afforded by pavers are limited only by the imagination. Our Design/Build services are available in:

• Morris County
• Somerset County
• Union County
• Hunterdon County
• Middlesex County
• Warren County