Landscaping/return on investment


Old 04-28-07, 08:49 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: USA
Posts: 155
Landscaping/return on investment

We are thinking about fixing up our front yard. I am talking about new sod, sprinklers and some plants. We live in the Atlanta area so we have hot weather most of the year.
My question is how much of our investment will we get back when we sell in a year or two at the most. Our neighborhood is mostly older with houses built in the 60's and only a few have done much to their yards.

Thanks in advance for any advise.
Take care
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Old 04-29-07, 07:01 AM
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: USA
Posts: 15,834
Reports on return on investment on landscaping tend to vary. It is a fact that updated landscaping increases curb appeal and makes backyard living spaces more inviting. The American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) reports that appropriate landscape improvements are estimated to return 100 to 200 percent of their cost when a house is sold. 5-20% is usually reported as the average return. A general rule of thumb is to invest 5-10% of the home's value with about a 15% return on investment.

If living in a neighborhood built in the '60s, most properties likely have dated and overgrown landscaping. If planning to sell your property, updated landscaping would not only be the first thing that meets the potential buyers' eyes but will set you apart from your neighbors. People are willing to pay more for updated landscaping. Overgrown and outdated landscaping can affect property values by an estimated 10%.

Of course, the return on investment is dependent upon the quality of the landscaping. This does not mean removing old shrubs and planting and replacing with a few small, builders' grade shrubs. Working with a local landscape designer or nursery will provide you with the professional guidance you need and will assure a better return on investment. Poor landscaping can detract from the property value. Excellent landscaping provides greater return than 'good' landscaping.

Remember that the key is a professional looking landscaping job with quality plantings and a quality design that enhances your property and sets it apart from competitive listings in the neighborhood. Depending on the lot's location, the proper plantings can reduce noise and block undesirable views. New plantings can reduce the opportunities for a break-in, as overgrown shrubs near entries provide good cover for thieves. New plantings have the potential to save on HVAC bills.

In addition to overgrown and outdated landscaping, some of the most common DIY mistakes include planting trees and shrubs too close to each other and too close to the house and fences. Many do not take into consideration the size of the tree or shrub when mature, its required growing conditions, or required maintenance. Depending on what you currently have growing in your landscape, you may need to remove shrubs and trees. Selectively pruning tree branches will allow more sunlight into the landscape. Trees planted too close to the home should be removed.

Before contacting a professional landscape designer, figure out how much you can afford. Of course, the front yard should be the priority as that establishes the curb appeal. The current trend is outdoor rooms in the back yard. These can easily cost $25,000 or more. From the standpoint of resale value, you do not want to price yourself out of the neighborhood. The point is that backyards should also look appealing and inviting and offer an area for outdoor entertainment. It can be as simple as a patio or deck that is nicely landscaped, plantings that block a neighbor's storage shed, and updated fence with plantings to soften the landscape. A new landscape design does not necessarily mean that everything has to be pulled up. You may have plants that can be worked into the new plan.

Don't overlook the condition of sidewalks, driveway, steps, and other fixtures in the landscape. Everything should look fresh and inviting.
Old 05-01-07, 02:38 PM
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 52
here is a web site that might help you answer, however it doesn't have an itemized list....

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