STEP 1 - CONSULTATION
The first step is meant to help establish the following:
1. Relationship - It is critical that we trust each other.
2. Job scope - Is this going to take days, weeks or months (sometimes even years?)
3. Goals - What are your hopes for the end result?
4. Style / Vibe - What do you find aesthetically pleasing? What mood or feel are you hoping to create? What makes you comfortable / uncomfortable?
5. Site observations - Considering the characteristics of the present property and what may or may not need to change. (Often times there are qualities about your property that may be useful or problematic in accomplishing the final outcome; these are things I am looking for.)
6. Budget - I'm pretty sure this needs no explanation.
7. Expectations - Setting realistic and reasonable timelines; explanation of the process moving forward; my level of involvement once the design is finalized and you are ready to move forward with contracting an installer.
8. Photos and measurements - A few pictures are taken along with necessary measurements in preparation for steps two and three.
9. Design Fee and Estimate - Before proceeding further I will estimate the time it will take to create visualizations and/or draw basic scale layouts (see below). Generally this fee is anywhere from $250-750 and includes one revision. Any further revisions are billed hourly.
STEP 2 - visualization
I use software to "mock-up" an initial visual - like the "before-and-afters" seen below - using the photos taken during the consultation. The main purpose of these is to help affirm that we are on the same page. They also help to give you a sense for how the final outcome will look when plants are in bloom, trees are mature, stones are in place, etc.
step 3 - layout (optional)
Once we have established that we are in accord with the desired outcome and are ready to move the process forward, if desired, I will draw overhead views of the proposed layout - similar to those shown below - using the approximate measurements taken during the consultation. You will notice that these drawings also include proposed materials, plants and other landscape features as well as those already existing.
STEP 4 - the BUILD
It's time to get to work. You hire your installer who will then give you the estimate for installing the design. I can also point you to some contractors that I trust. I may or may not be involved in the process from this point on; it's up to you. However, sometimes homeowners choose to have me help manage or consult during the project. This consultation fee is billed $150 per visit up to two hours, then $75 / hr after that.