Landscaping Mistakes That Hurt the Value of Your Home

Anyone who has ever bought or sold a house knows the importance of curb appeal in determining its market value. Realtors know the importance of first impressions which is why they make sure a house is looking its best before showing it to prospective buyers. Several elements go into the curb appeal, but none are as important as landscaping.

Real estate professionals will tell you that a great landscape design can increase the value of a property by 20%. On the other hand, bad landscaping can reduce the value. Even if you are not selling your house, the first impression that the landscape design creates will affect people’s perceptions about the interiors of the house and its occupants.

How a landscape is designed depends on the artistic sensibilities of the homeowner and the creative skills of the landscape designer, but some landscaping mistakes can have a significant impact on the selling price of the house and on the impression people get of the occupants.

  • Creating a landscape in bits and pieces will result in a disjointed design and the landscape will have no continuity; this will hurt the market value.
  • Landscaping is not a “fit and forget” project. Maintenance is required to keep it at its best and if that is not done,the negative impact will become apparent immediately.
  • Potential drainage and storm water problems are not only things a savvy buyer will look into but these could be the cause of major issues for you when you are living in the house.
  • Trees are always nice because of the beauty and shade they offer. But too many of them will make an open area claustrophobic and dark.
  • Damaged or unkempt patios are both ugly to look at and a potential source of accidents and injuries.
  • Water features like koi ponds can enhance the appeal of a landscape, but they require a great deal of maintenance to look their best.
  • Unplanned irrigation can leave some areas of the yard dry and arid and other areas soggy and muddy. Neither the occupants nor the buyers will want to spend time there.
  • Lighting is a key factor in landscaping. The lighting, to be effective, must be an integral part of the design.

These are just a few of the landscaping mistakes that can affect the curb appeal of a house.

Your home should have the landscape design you want. Only a professional landscape designer will be able to take your concepts and turn them into the reality that will give your home the look and feel you desire. Trying to do the design yourself will never produce the same results because there is so much technical knowledge that goes into the design – the type of soil, the climate, the need for irrigation, the maintenance requirements, etc. all have to be considered.

Overlooking or not having the skills to deal with any of the many factors that are required for the right landscape will leave the exterior of the home looking a lot less appealing. If you are planning on selling your home, asking a landscape designer to improve the look of the exterior is essential. If you are not planning on selling, great landscaping will make the home a very  pleasant place to live in. DIY efforts will never produce the same results as a landscaping expert.

Tips to Planning for a Great Landscape

Your home’s external appearance is important. The use of a front or backyard depends on the homeowner – it could be a place to enjoy natural beauty, to have an outdoor kitchen for entertaining or to play football with the family. Whatever the use, planning the landscape to suit the use is critical.

The Planning Parameters You Should Not Ignore

  • Know How the Garden Will Be Used: Open spaces rarely have only one use. One family member may want a quiet place to unwind while another may want to practice shooting hoops. Creating a landscape to meet the various requirements of the family is not easy and compromises may need to be made. What is important is to ensure that everyone has something that they want and that the various uses do not negatively affect the other–kids playing catch and crashing into the barbeque will make no one happy.
  • You Probably Cannot Fit in Everything: Even with big yards, space is limited. Being out in the open usually leads to people forgetting the space limitations and trying to fit in too much. You may want a fountain, a pergola, a fire pit, an herb garden, lots of flower beds and more. But trying to cram too much into a limited space will create a landscape that is crowded, uncomfortable and not all nice to look at.
  • Know Your Budget: Be sure of how much you can afford to spend on developing the landscape and how much it will cost you. Running short of money before the project is complete will result in the remaining work staying unfinished or being done to a lower standard than the rest of the garden. Either way, the result will not be what you were aiming for and the pleasure you get from the yard will be greatly diminished.

Also Read: Staying Outdoors While at Home

  • Plan for Maintenance: Creating a beautiful landscape is one thing – ensuring it stays that way is another. Maintenance is going to be required and you need to not only have the budget in place but you will also have to devote enough time to keep the garden looking the way it should. A badly maintained landscape can often be worse than no landscape at all.
  • What Do Local Ordinances Allow? Local ordinances vary greatly. In some places, you can do pretty much what you want within your property limits while in others there are restrictions and limitations to having a pool, an outdoor kitchen, a patio, etc. Your homeowners’ association may also have some rules in place that you need to know about. Being sure that what you plan will not cause problems with local authorities will save you the hassle and cost of making changes in the future.
  • Get Expert Help: This is the key to creating a great landscape. A landscaping professional will be aware of all these points and many others that need to be taken into account when planning a landscape. He will be able to give you the landscape you want, at the cost you can afford and he will also continue to look after it in the future so that you can enjoy it without any worries.

Adding Health and Value to Your Home

A home should be as welcoming outside as it is on the inside. When you turn into your street, the beautiful façade of your home should lift your spirits and bring a smile to your lips. The external appearance or curb appeal of a house affects the mood and attitude of all those who enter it, even if they are occupants who have lived there for years. It also plays an important part when you are planning to sell the house, as the exterior of your home is what a potential buyer will see first. That could influence their interest in the house.

Landscape plays an essential part in the way the exterior of your home looks. Here are some smart landscaping tips that won’t burn a hole in your pocket.

Focal point

Using a prop or part of the façade as a focal point is a great way to draw the eye. It could be an addition like a bench, a porch swing, or a fountain, or it could be something that already exists, like the front door or a tree. Use that as the centerpiece and arrange plants to complement the piece.

Pathways

An exciting pathway is an excellent addition to your exterior. It could be part of your drive, it could run through your garden, or it could lead to the front door. Make it enjoyable by choosing materials and plants that complement each other.

Plant walls

This is becoming increasingly popular. You can use an already existing wall, picket fence, or trellis as the base for your new plant wall. Depending on how high or long your wall is, you can decorate it with climbing vines, colorful planters, and interesting wrought-iron bric-a-bracs.

Curb appeal is not something to think about only when selling a home. It is an integral part of making a house a happier place to live in.When adding to the exterior of your home, remember that your imagination only limits you. Landscaping is the right way to enhance the beauty of a house and make it a place where both occupants and visitors are eager to enter.

Staying Outdoors While at Home

Although the COVID-19 lock down is being lifted, in the future we will all be spending a lot more time at home. While this has its benefits, it can also become a source of stress and tension for a family. Creating a landscaped yard enables everyone to spend time outdoors without leaving the security of the home.

COVID-19 forced us all to spend far more time at home than we ever did before. The lock down restrictions are now slowly being eased and going out and resuming some semblance of “normal” life can be anticipated. However, the “new normal” and the way we will live will be different from what it was in pre-pandemic times. How things will pan out remains to be seen, but one thing all the experts agree on is that we will be spending much more time at home.

Being stuck indoors for long periods can be very stressful, especially if it looks like the walls will be a major part of your life in the future. This is where the phrase “climbing the walls” came from. There is a way out – literally. The solution is to spend more time outdoors without actually leaving the house. Taking a chair and placing it in the back yard will not work. The family needs an open area that is calm, soothing, relaxing and appealing so that spending time there will not be just to escape the confines of the house but to actually enjoy the ambience of the place. Creating a beautiful garden/yard is not a luxury. It is an investment in the well-being of the family while increasing the home’s curb appeal and adding to its value. Here are a few ideas for you to think about.

Landscaping Concepts to Think About

  • Put in an arbour or a pergola. Small landscapes benefit from this because it creates a focal point which adds depth to the vista.
  • Break up the open area into smaller spaces using shrubs, trees, plants, etc. This will make the landscape appear larger.
  • Create a small cozy space for those who want a little alone time. It will be a place where they can read, listen to music or just unwind.
  • Use retaining walls to create multiple levels. This will not only add to the appeal of the landscape but it will also give it more depth.
  • Use lighting to give the landscape a different look and feel after sunset.
  • Add more color and variety to the landscape by going vertical. This means using plants and shrubs that are slim and tall so that more can be planted in a limited area without making it look overcrowded.
  • But also make sure that you do not get carried away with these and other concepts you come across. Adding features to a landscape increases its beauty and appeal, but if overdone, it can create the impression of messiness and clutter.
  • Think about maintenance. A beautiful landscape needs to be kept that way. Think about how much time you will be able to devote to caring for it and what your budget will be.

A landscaping professional will be able to create a landscape which will give you the peace, tranquillity and freedom that you need at home. In addition, you will be free from maintenance worries and will be able to enjoy your beautiful landscape in peace.

The Essentials of Landscape Maintenance

Creating a beautiful landscape is not easy. It requires a high degree of aesthetic sensibility, artistic talent, detailed knowledge of horticulture, local climatic and soil conditions and the ability to translate a concept into reality. It is the right combination of all these that make a great landscape designer and creator. What is often overlooked in the excitement of creating the perfect landscape is the matter of maintaining it. In the long run, the quality of maintenance is as important as the quality of the initial creation.

Landscapes Need Care
When a landscape is designed and created, the amount and type of maintenance that it will require to continue to look its best is part of the planning process. A landscaping professional will consult with the client about future maintenance needs and incorporate this into the finished landscape.
A typical maintenance program will include:

  • A general clean-up at regular intervals. The frequency and type of cleaning will depend on the type of landscape and environmental factors.
  • Lawn mowing at fixed intervals
  • Flower bed weeding
  • Tidying up the edges of flower beds
  • Seasonal garden bed planting
  • Tree and shrub trimming
  • Fertilizing 
  • New plantings as may be required
  • Maintenance of the irrigation system
  • Snow removal
  • Cleaning and maintenance of pavers, lighting fixtures and so on

Some activities may not be required, and others may be added, depending on the specific requirement of each case. Contingencies such as what to do during drought conditions are not generally part of a maintenance agreement, but if such a situation should arise, a landscape expert will be able to do what is required to protect the garden.


Professional Care Is Essential
Investing in a beautiful garden is always a good idea. It adds to the beauty of the house and the enjoyment that the occupants derive from living in the home. It is also an expression of the personality of the family that lives in the home. The addition to the curb appeal and value of the home should not be forgotten. However, if maintenance is not up to the mark, the overall image of the home will suffer, as will the happiness of the occupants and the curb appeal.


Spending money to create a great garden but not planning on its maintenance is a recipe for disaster. It is easy to think that the care and upkeep is something the homeowner can do himself, but it requires far more expert knowledge, experience and equipment than people realize. What often happens is that homeowners try to do their own landscape maintenance and it is only after they find that the work is beyond them, that they call in a professional. By that time, more damage would have occurred and the cost of repairs before starting regular maintenance will push up costs.


A good professional landscape specialist will discuss maintenance needs as part of the client briefing so that a plan and budget for maintenance can be created. The professional will work with the client to tailor the maintenance according to the client’s needs so that the client is happy, and the landscape continues to look its best.

Source: http://blog.doolinglandscapeservice.com/2020/03/the-essentials-of-landscape-maintenance.html