Your backyard needs a lot of work. You do not have the time to do it yourself and you have decided to hire a landscape contractor. You want to choose a company that is reliable and trustworthy and has experience in various types of landscaping. If there is a yard in your neighborhood you admire which was created by a landscape contractor, ask your neighbor for a reference.
You can also find landscape contractors in your Yellow Pages and on the Internet. You should find out how long the contractor has been in business. You also want to know the size of the company. If you have a large project and a time schedule, you want to make sure it can be completed on time. If the landscape contractor has a small company, you want to know how many jobs they are currently working on and how many are waiting.
A small landscape contractor can do as a good a job as a large one if they have the experience. There may be a problem if you have a project timeline and the small company does not have enough workers to start your job or work on it on a daily basis to meet your timeline.
Most landscape contractors will offer a free estimate for your job. This gives you an opportunity to meet them and ask them questions. You may be able to get them to show you some of their previous work. Some will have a portfolio of pictures of the work they have done.
If you have particular problem areas in your yard such as drainage or too little shade, make a list and ask the contractor how those can be handled. You should also let them know if there are structures you want to add to your yard such as a patio. If they can not do the work themselves, they usually have a subcontractor they work with to do masonry or carpentry work. You can specify the amount you want to spend and ask what can be done within those budget limitations.
Once you have selected your landscape contractor, they will create a design for your yard. You can include both your front yard and your backyard. You can also ask for separate estimates for each. Your budget may only allow you to do one yard at a time.
Landscape contractors are usually landscape architects. They have experience in creating beautiful yards using color and texture. They can make hills and slopes flow naturally as a part of your yard.
If you do not have the time or the energy to landscape your yard, find a good landscape contractor and you will not regret it. Note of caution: There are always budget overruns on large projects so keep your budget in mind when reviewing the design and making purchases.
Enjoy your new yard!