BEST-OF-HOUZZ-2016

Choosing Quality over Price

 

By Tony Catanzaro, CLT

 

Most people will spend time researching a major purchase. If they are buying a major appliance they will often choose a higher priced model that was manufactured by a reputable company over a “bargain” brand. They will pay 30 – 50% more for this item. They do this because they know it will out perform and out last the cheaply made unit. They see the value in it.

 

So why is it that from my perspective so many people contract the low bidder landscape contractor? Are all landscape firms the same? Certainly not! I feel it is partly due to people not placing the value in their landscape it deserves. Your landscaping greatly affects your homes value and your family’s quality of life. I have heard on countless occasions, “we are only going to be here a couple more years so we are going with the lower quote”. My question is what is that project going to look like in a “couple of years”? Are the pavers and edging heaving and shifting? Are poorly located plants over growing their spaces or are they dead and dieing? It seems that if they went with a more qualified landscape firm and spent 30 – 50% more the project would have gained value as it matured and helped in marketing their home.

 

What about proper insurance for your landscape contractor? Do you ask for proof of insurance when you hire a maintenance or installation landscape company? Do you want your home owner’s policy to be held responsible if a worker or passerby gets injured? It will be if your Landscape contractor does not carry proper liability and worker’s compensation insurance. If they do is it enough insurance? It should be a 1 million dollar policy at least. All you have to do is simply ask for an insurance certificate. A legitimate company will gladly and proudly provide you with it.

 

Price is not the only sign of quality. Ask good questions when you are hiring a landscape contractor. The first should be about insurance. Second should be how many years experience they have and how long they have been in business. I would say a minimum of 5 years experience is needed to be considered qualified and 10 plus much better. Third I would ask about their education and training in the landscape field. They should be able to tell you about all of the great continuing education they take at Rutgers or at the County College levels. There is a good percentage out there with associates or bachelors degrees in landscape/horticulture as well.

 

For design and build your landscape firm should have an extensive portfolio of designs and photos for you to peruse. They may have a display area or design studio to help you through the process. Ask about sub contractors they may use and the crew Forman’s experience. For pavers and walls ask if they are authorized installers or I.C.P.C.I certified. For maintenance work they must have a state applicators license from the DEP to apply pesticides and herbicides to your turf, shrubs, and trees.

 

The last and not least is industry certification. Ask if they have any CLT Certified Landscape Technicians on staff. There are other certifications, CNLP for example.

Although fairly new to New Jersey many companies are getting people certified. It is a great measure of quality, commitment, and knowledge.

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



Houzz