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How to make money from your landscaping

22 April 2020

Are you wondering does landscaping really increase property value? The short answer is, yes! But it's not that simple... the question to ask is, "what landscaping increases the value of your house?" We will explore what adds the most value to your home while also sharing what brings property value down to help you invest wisely. A key to capturing your buyer is the landscaping. A bad first impression can loose you a buyer and that big pay cheque.

If you're thinking, but I'm not selling yet? That's okay because landscaping can actually increase in value over time! While some renovations don't weather well such as painting, quality landscaping only lasts and increases in value. Read this to ensure you're getting quality landscaping. Plants grow and thrive and become more impressive, quality retaining walls and timber decking last for years and years AND you will have time to enjoy the new living spaces you've created.

landscape design gold coast, does landscaping increase the value of your home?

We have compiled advice from our landscaping team's experience as well as the people who have all the answers... realtors! According to those in the property market, great landscaping can earn you anything from a 5 to 28% higher selling value. The more appealing your property is, the more interest you will have which will continue to drive up your property value.

According to Australian realtors, standard landscaping like lawns and gardens add $50,000+ to your home and deck and patio areas add $100,000+. A study from Michigan University found, the highest return on home improvement was landscaping with a 109% return on landscaping dollars spent.

What adds value to your house?

1) Quality work; 

Hiring a professional landscaper for your project will help you make a return on your investment. An experienced landscaper will:

   i) know the tricks and tips of landscaping that can earn you the big bucks,

   ii) they adhere to licensing and building codes (you won't be trapped into lowering your price because of a code violation) and,

   iii) they will use landscape design to create the most usable space from your property.

2) Entertaining areas; 

Patios, decks and outdoor living spaces can substantially increase the value of your home. People want to see spaces they can imagine spending time in with family and friends.

3) Curb appeal; 

Ever heard of never judge a book by its cover? Unfortunately, the opposite is true. Books get judged by the covers all the time and so do homes. Buyers make their first opinions before they ever step foot in your door. Capture them from the first moment with a stunning front garden and entrance.

4) Inspiring emotion; 

Buyers don't buy a house, they buy the way the house makes them feel. A big part of connecting with your home is the outdoor spaces. A cosy fire pit, patio area or lounge chairs under a gazebo by the pool. This is what your buyer connects with.

5) Design; 

Colour, contrast, shape and texture are all things to consider in your landscaping project. These elements draw people to your space and create interest which sticks in their brains like that annoying baby shark song! See how to design your landscaping project here.

Don't do it!

These things can negatively affect home appraisal and you may not see a return in your investment!

1) DIY work! 

Unfortunately, a lot of people grab their tools and head out into their yard before really understanding exactly what goes into a landscaping project. Landscaping is really the jack of all trades and takes years to become experienced in all areas of landscaping. A DIY that is half finished, not to code, doesn't last or isn't crafted well is unfortunately easy to spot for most home owners.

2) Fancy over the top gardens or... no gardens! 

People like to see beautiful gardens in a landscape. Gardens help break up structural elements and keep your property feeling natural. However, over the top gardens scream at people, "MAINTENANCE, TIME, MONEY" and this can turn off a lot of prospective buyers. Stick with usable areas such as outdoor spaces and patios, these will provide opportunity for the buyer and increase the liveable space your home is offering. 

3) Surprisingly... a pool! 

Pools cost a huge amount to invest in and are not for everyone. Are you thinking, "bugger, I already have one?" No problem at all! If you already have a pool invested into your property, the pool surrounds can be used as an opportunity to create another usable space! Build a gazebo or create a living room space nearby... maybe even featuring a fire pit!

4) Clutter or messy, unkept yards! 

Keep it clean, people's eyes will automatically be drawn to the mess and clutter. You may be removing it after sale but this will stay in the mind of prospective buyers and trigger messages of maintenance, work and discomfort.

5) Budget or cheap landscaping! 

It might be tempting to go for that quote of $5,000 when the other quotes you have received are double that but don't! A quality landscaper will never offer ridiculously low quotes and there is a reason. Someone who is experienced knows exactly how much time is needed to go into a project and they know what materials and services will last. Going for the cheapest quote will leave you with faulty materials gotten on the cheap and a rushed job to save time and money. You may end up with no structural integrity or landscaping you will just have to replace in a year. Invest well from the start and it will pay off.

So what do I pick?

1) Decking: Decking can be pricey at usually $300 per square metre and up for a quality deck that could end up costing you $25,000+ however realtors have shown adding decked outdoor spaces can add $100,000+ to your home! Talk about an investment! Features such as built in seating and planter boxes can also increase value. 

2) Outdoor lighting: (solar of course) can create stunning features of your gardens and paths with little to no effort! 

3) Low maintenance: use sprinkler systems and irrigation for your turf and gardens and create simple gardens that aren't overgrown or require a lot of pruning and care.

4) A new lawn and edging is a big one! Fresh turf with edging gives a neat look and implies it is lower maintenance than patchy lawns without edging.

5) Curb appeal: You want a great impression with your curb appeal! In the front yard create a beautiful feature garden and nice path leading to your front door. Make sure your turf is new or in good health!

6) Design and plan: Get a professional to help you with your landscape design. Playing with shapes, colour, texture and contrast in your landscaping will create "wow" moments that will stay in the minds of buyers.

7) Boundary fences: A fence is a must have for many people with children, pets or who prefer privacy. Consider your fence carefully and select something that won't subtract from the look of your property especially if you have a smaller yard. 

8) Create an outdoor room: Tiled, paved or (the top option) decked patios with gazebos or pergolas create another usable space. Think about it, the more rooms in your house, the higher the value. By creating outdoor spaces and entertaining areas, you're creating more rooms. Add furniture for sitting and working and add built in seating and gardens.

9) Consider your sideways: Don't just stop your landscaping at your sideways, consider how to make them usable spaces or how to add features so your landscaping comes together.

10) Add unique features! Don't just add designs that interest you, think about moments that will create "wows" and that are practical.

Things to remember!

  • Use a qualified and experienced landscaper who can show you their licenses, insurance and client recommendations. There are a lot of people who have found ways around licensing and are therefore not regulated! We are often hearing tradesmen giving tips to other tradies to save them money and quote cheaper. These involve skimping out on structural integrity! We also have clients call to replace landscaping after a year or two that should have lasted them 10+ years. Be wary of cheap quotes, they are often cheap for a reason!
  • People these days don't want yards that require a lot of maintenance! When people have down time, they want to spend it relaxing in their outdoor spaces, not tending to them. This is the fast passed, busy world of today.
  • Who is your target market in your area? Families with children want grassed areas for children to play and entertainment areas to gather for meals. Young couples want outdoor spaces for working and spending time with friends.
  • This is the sunny Gold Coast! People spent time outdoors all year round! Give them a place to do that.
Not only could you be increasing your sale value but you could be creating a space for you and your family to enjoy in the meantime! Feel free to get in touch to discuss your landscaping project.