If you’re a new homeowner with a less than inspiring home landscape and a desire to build out the backyard of your dreams, you have a lot of good times to look forward to. But whether you’re planning on tackling your landscaping project with the help of a professional, or whether you plan to go DIY-style and purchase materials from a landscaping supply company, putting together a realistic budget will certainly present you with your first big challenge. Naturally, your budget should represent the costs necessary to complete the sort of landscape you truly want. After all, is there any point in tackling the project now if it won’t result in the sort of yard you long for? Then again, unless you’re independently wealthy, you probably will have to cut out at least a few dream line items here and there, especially when you consider that budget overages are almost a given in our industry. But don’t worry just yet: There’s a right way to put together a landscaping supply budget, and below, we’ve shared with you some of the most important rules of thumb for figuring out the smartest way to plan financially for your home’s new outdoor features.
How Much Should You Spend?
Most landscaping supply professionals will tell you that when determining a rough budget for your project, your best bet will be to set that budget at somewhere between 10% and 15% of the value of your home. That rule of thumb, however, only applies if your landscaping project is going to consist of basic elements like patios, driveways, simple walkways, and planting elements. If your landscaping plans include upscale, major construction elements, you’re probably already aware that you’ll be spending serious money. We’re talking about features such as gazebos, swimming pools, hot tubs, and outdoor kitchens. The sky is absolutely the limit when it comes to including those sorts of big ticket elements.
What are the Various Elements of a Smart, Successful Landscaping Supply Budget?
- First, you’ll want to be 100 percent sure as you begin putting your budget together that primarily, it’s a realistic budget. We like to tell our landscaping supply customers that aside from increasing the value of your home, the result of a landscaping project should be the outdoor space of your dreams … but within reason. If you start your project with an unrealistic budget, you’ll have very little to look forward to aside from stress, headaches and heartburn.
- Speaking of realistic budgets, most anyone who has ever hired a contractor or undertaken a construction job on their own is likely familiar with the concept of work changes and project overages. It’s simply the nature of the industry that something will go wrong along the way and require more work hours as a result, or that a aspect of your project will require an expensive element or add-on you weren’t expecting. To keep the panic to a minimum when such issues inevitably arise, add a bit of financial buffer to your budget.
- We recommend tracking literally every project-related expenditure as an accountant would: carefully and obsessively. Saving all your receipts, for instance, is an effective way to make sure you’re not blowing your budget before you even get started.
Organizing Your Landscaping Supply Budget
When you sit down with pen and paper and begin planning the details of your landscaping project, feel free to begin without editing yourself. In other words, make a list of every element you’d like your project to include. Organize those elements as best you can into categories such as hardscape elements (wooden decks, retaining walls, concrete paving, seating walls, etc.) and softscape elements (lighting, an irrigation or sprinkler system, trees, crushed rock, mulch, bark, etc.) Once your dream list is complete, it’s time to return to the real world. Spend some time figuring out which elements you don’t absolutely need, and which ones you absolutely do. Also, if your project will involve more than just a backyard upgrade, consider splitting it into various stages, so that you won’t be saddled with the time and expense of having to work on everything at once.
Other Ways to Avoid Blowing Your Budget
If you plan on completing even some of the project by yourself, you’re already ahead of the game in terms of saving money. You’ll need to locate a landscape supply company, of course, with reasonable prices and helpful, educated employees. We like to think of Woodward Landscape Supply as just that company. Located at 661 Schuylkill Road in Phoenixville, Woodward Landscape Supply has been serving both DIY homeowners and pro contractors alike for more than 20 years. During that time, we’ve honed our reputation for our commitment, experience, and expertise in all things landscaping. If there’s a material that’s required to complete a landscape or hardscaping construction project, we’ve got it, we know how to use it, and we’re always more than happy to share that knowledge with our customers. Feel free to contact us or visit us today, or whenever your landscaping budget list is complete.