How to choose the right Landscape Company for your Strata

Do You Manage A Strata or Home Owner Association?

Here is some helpful advice on choosing a great landscaping company.

Managing a busy residential development is a big task. To have no concerns about the curb appeal of your property’s and its landscaping is of great benefit to a busy strata council. There are literally hundreds of landscaping companies from which to choose. How do you know if the company you’re choosing is best suited to maintain your property the way your council has envisioned?

Choosing the right landscaping company for your development may be the difference between being the envy of your neighbourhood, or the property that stands out for all of the wrong reasons.

Maintaining a large residential property with annual gardens, lawns, mature trees, bushes and hardscaping such as decks, patios, walkways and retaining walls is very labour intensive. It requires an experienced team to provide regular attention, often year-round.

When choosing a landscaping or property maintenance company to take care of your condo, strata or townhome landscape please consider the following.

#1. What will be included in the contract?

Has your home owner association or strata council come to an agreement as to the scope of work you’d like to see included? An experienced and well- equipped landscaping company should be able to complete any or all of the following tasks:

Lawn mowing Tree and hedge planting Bark mulch application
Lawn maintenance Tree pruning
Spring/fall cleanups
Lawn weeding Hedge trimming General garden services
Lawn fertilizing Shrubpruning
Lawn edging Fruit tree pruning
Lawn remediation Leaf collection
Lime application Debris removal
Annual plant installations
Sod/turf installation

#2.Does the company have appropriate insurance coverage?

Appropriate and comprehensive insurance coverage for this type of work is essential. It’s not uncommon for a lawn mower to throw a hidden rock through a window of a home or even a vehicle and appropriate insurance coverage ensures the repairs are done with minimum delay or inconvenience to you. It is also essential that your contractor has Work Safe BC coverage for all its employees to ensure that anyinjuries to workers while on your property will not impact homeowners.

#3.Does the company provide a clear and comprehensive contract?

When the cost of a typical strata landscaping contract ranges anywhere from $10,000 to $100,000+ annually, it’s important to have a clear and itemized contract in place.

The services that will be provided by the company should be clearly outlined in your contract with the company making the services provided easy to monitor and oversee. A clear and comprehensive contract with well- defined policies and procedures will keep everyone on the same page.

A good contract protects your strata’s investment in the appearance of your property and ensures the best use of your landscapers time, manpower and equipment to keep your property looking it’s best.

#4. Are the employees easy to identify and professional in their appearance?

Choosing a landscaping company that has well marked trucks and uniformed staff will ensure that on site staff are identified easily. This enhances the lines of communication and the safety of residents and staff.

#5.Well trained and supervised staff

It’s important the landscaping crew that is assigned to your property is properly trained. Staff that have been expertly trained will work more safely, efficiently and ensure a superior result. There should always be a foreman on site with several years of landscaping and lawn care experience to oversee and provide guidance to the landscape labourers. This ensures consistency and quality.

#6.Can the company accommodate strata councils requests?

It’s not uncommon for residents to have small yards or gardens they prefer to care for on their own. Can the company accommodate those residents? Most councils and indeed almost all municipalities have a pesticide ban in place. Will your company abide by the no pesticide rule? These situations and others should be clearly spelled out in the contract.

#7.What happens after a wind or snow storm?

In the lower mainland it is not unusual to get several windstorms over the course of fall and winter. They can leave behind quite a mess with broken branches, leaves and other organic debris scattered over lawns, garden beds and outdoor patio areas. It’s impossible for your landscaper to predict when a windstorm occurs but be sure that clean up following such a storm will be included in the next on site visit. What if a large tree has come down? Can your company accommodate an extra on site visit to remove it if the tree is impeding foot or car traffic? What are the additional costs for an unscheduled visit? How is contact made? Again your company should provide clear contact guidelines for such emergency events.

#8. Frequency of Landscaping Visits

This is another of the items that should be clearly outlined in your contract. Will the crew visit weekly? Which day of the week can you expect them? A property with extensive gardens, lawns and many mature trees will need constant, skilled attention. Many strata councils may try to save money by having their landscapers come less frequently. Have your landscaper explain the pros and cons of this approach.

Why choose Project Lawns to maintain your strata property?

When you choose Project Lawns to maintain your residential development you are partnering with a small, locally owned and owner- operated company. Project Lawns is licensed to conduct business throughout the Lower Mainland. We carry all appropriate insurance and follow Work Safe BC guidelines.

All our staff are well trained and will always be friendly and courteous. Project Lawns staff are easily identified by their green shirts which prominently display the company logo and the workers designation. You can be sure that anytime our crew is on site one of our foremen is also on site. The foreman will supervise the work provided to your property so you can be assured you will receive the quality attention you have been promised.

Choosing Project Lawns ensures that your property is in excellent and experienced hands. We take a great deal of pride in our work and, as our testimonials attest, we have an excellent reputation. Strata owners and council alike will appreciate the quality workmanship and the superior appearance of your outdoor space. A well- kept landscape only adds to the value and enjoyment of your home.

If you would like Nathan to provide you with an estimate to improve and maintain the landscape on your residential property, please give him a call at 604-816-4106. Alternately fill out our online contact form and Project Lawns will be in touch shortly.

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