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Residential Frequently Asked Questions

I have an older existing landscaping that I want to renovate. Can you plan a renovation that keeps some existing features and replaces others?

Yes! This is one of our specialty areas. We love to work with existing mature trees and landscaping, or to totally transform an outdated landscape into something beautiful.

Do you provide a free estimate?

Yes! We always provide a free consultation and a free proposal, with no obligations. Simply fill out our contact form and we will get back to right away to schedule a consultation.

What is a landscape architect?

Landscape Architects are professionally licensed to practice, similarly to an Engineer or an Architect. To call oneself a Landscape Architect and to practice the field, you must have a degree in Landscape Architecture from an accredited university, and then pass a strenuous written examination.

In most cases, laws require that a licensed Landscape Architect be included on the project design team for the design of new buildings, parks, streetscape, communities, homes, etc. For more information, read "What Does a Landscape Architect Do".

What is the difference between Outdoor Design Group and a landscape contractor or a garden center?

Our friends the landscape contractors and garden centers are really in the business of selling installation services and materials, even if they say they do design. They typically charge a very small design fee and do not want to spend much time or effort on the design.

We are professional Landscape Architects who only do design. Our design fees are the same no matter how small or large your budget is for the overall project. Our job is to spend a lot of time with you carefully planning a design that meets your expectations, while also meeting your budget. After the design is done, we can put the plans out for competitive bids, help select the right contractor, and then provide oversight of the installation on your behalf.

Can you get my landscaping approved from my homeowners association?

Yes! We deal with homeowners associations all the time. In most cases they will be happy that you hired a professional landscape architect, therefore making the approval process much faster.

How much does a design cost and how do you charge for your services?

Each project and Client are unique, so the cost for our services varies depending on your individual project. After a free consultation to understand what your needs are, we will provide a proposal based on your requirements and budget.

I have no idea what landscaping costs. Can you help me come up with a realistic budget for my project?

We consider this an important part of our job. We will work with you to determine a realistic budget for your project. And if the initial idea is too ambitious, we can then scale it back to make it work for you.

What if I want to install your design myself?

No problem. We see many of our designs get installed this way. Our plans are detailed enough and easy enough to follow that anyone can do the installation.

Can you provide a master plan that I can install over time?

Of course! We realize that not everyone has the budget or patience to do it all at once. A master plan is a great way to make improvements over time.

Can you tell us how much water and money we would save by doing a landscape renovation?

Yes. We can do an instant analysis to give you a rough idea of how much water and money you could save. As we get into more detail on the design we can tell you exactly what your savings will be by doing a landscape renovation.

Can you recommend a contractor to do the installation?

Over the years we have developed a great network of contractors that we trust, and are happy to refer them to you to do the installation of our designs..

Can you design irrigation systems and sprinklers?

Yes, we can design both new systems and upgrades. We also specialize in re-designing landscaping and irrigation to save a lot of water.

Can you design items that are not landscaping, such as decks, retaining walls, driveways, and pools?

As professional Landscape Architects we have experience with all of these items and more. Many of these items require detailed drawings and special permits - we have experience dealing with all of these issues, and can design the entire project to fit together perfectly.

I have no idea what landscaping costs. Can you help me come up with a realistic budget for my project?

We consider this an important part of our job. We will work with you to determine a realistic budget for your project. And if the initial idea is too ambitious, we can then scale it back to make it work for you.

We are building a new home. When would be the best time to contact you?

We would prefer to be contacted early the design process, to work with your Architect on the placement of the home. This way we can give advice on where to place entryways, driveways, patios, retaining walls, lawns, outdoor kitchens, and other amenities. But, if the home has already been designed we would still love to plan your landscaping!

How do we get started and what are the first steps?

Simply fill out our short contact form and we will get back to you right away to schedule a consultation. After the consultation we will provide you with a customized proposal to fit your requirements.