Top Questions You Need to Ask When Planning Your Landscape Lighting Design
The right landscape design can increase your San Diego home’s value by more than 20 percent. However, if you’re not selling your house anytime soon, updating your landscaping is still an important investment.
The nicer your yard looks, the more it will stand out from the rest of the neighborhood. There’s more to designing a beautiful landscape than finding the right plants, though.
You also need to incorporate the right lighting, and that landscape lighting design should always get installed by a professional.
For most homeowners, finding someone to install their lighting system can feel like a huge challenge. That’s why it’s always best to interview several contractors before you pick the right one.
The better you understand your options, the more prepared you’ll be to make the right decision for your home and your budget.
Before you hire someone to start the project, make sure to ask your contractor these important questions:
What Experience Does the Team Have?
A dedicated professional should always handle any type of electrical work on your property. They need to have a valid business license, liability insurance, and years of training and experience under their belts.
Experienced contractors are happy to discuss their backgrounds with you. Make sure you’re comfortable with their background before signing any contracts.
Also, make sure to ask for copies of their license and insurance. If they can’t provide them to you, work with someone else.
Hiring an inexperienced contractor or one without liability insurance and licensing puts you at risk for costly damages.
Do You Have a Portfolio of Past Work I Can See?
The best way to know if you’ll like the work the contractor does on your landscape lighting is to look at their past projects.
Most contractors have extensive portfolios detailing the work they’ve done. These also include pictures that show how the finished project came together.
If you like what you see, ask to speak with their references. Their references are previous clients who can attest to their work quality and let you know if they’d trust the contractor with future projects.
When their past clients are happy, you can expect to receive the same quality service, but if the majority of their references are less than thrilled with the work, keep looking.
What Type of Outdoor Lighting Ideas Do You Think Will Work Best?
Every home is different, and that means your contractor should create a unique design just for your San Diego yard.
Make sure they’re willing to discuss what you’re looking to achieve with your lighting. Are they being responsive to your questions and concerns?
If not, keep looking.
The right contractor will explain what works and what doesn’t. At very least, they should discuss the benefits of lighting walkways, improving porch lights, and highlighting the elements you love most in your yard.
They’ll take your aesthetic preferences into consideration when drafting a design, and they’ll always discuss things with you thoroughly before committing to any changes.
How Much Maintenance Will the Landscape Lighting Design Need?
Your landscaping needs regular maintenance, and so does your lighting, but the type of maintenance you’ll need to do will depend on the design and fixtures installed.
Before you agree to a quote and design, make sure you’re comfortable with the maintenance the system needs.
Ideally, you’ll be able to handle most of the routine maintenance yourself. Before installation, your contractor should go over the types of necessary upkeep in detail.
If the tasks require more experience, they should also come up with a regular maintenance plan to keep your landscape looking its best. If their team can’t handle maintenance for you, they should be able to refer you to someone who can.
Can We Adjust the Design in the Future?
It’s unrealistic to expect that your landscape design won’t change and grow over time. This means your lighting design needs to be flexible.
It should grow with your yard, which means the design should take these future improvements into consideration.
The quality of your lighting won’t change, but the wiring and location of fixtures might.
You need to discuss your thoughts with your designer before committing to the project. Otherwise, you may have to start over when you do choose to expand, which can add hundreds to your landscaping costs in the future.
What Will it Cost in the Long-Run?
Installation costs aren’t the only thing you need to think about when incorporating outdoor lighting into your landscaping. You also need to look at how much it will cost to use those lights month after month.
The average homeowner pays about $1,200 per year for electricity alone. The more lights you have at home, the more electricity you’ll use.
If you’re installing landscape lighting with standard incandescent bulbs, you’ll see a spike in energy costs month after month.
By installing LED lights, you’ll cut your energy costs significantly, but the best time to do this is during the installation itself.
Your contractor will help you find quality outdoor-rated LED bulbs and fixtures that will last for many years to come.
Creating a beautiful landscape lighting design for your San Diego home can make all the difference in how your yard looks day and night, but you need to find an experienced professional you can trust.
At Lighting Distinctions, we have more than 25 years of experience helping homeowners create beautiful lighting designs. Our dedicated team believes that every home is unique and will create a custom design for your yard.
We guarantee you’ll love your yard and will work with your specific needs and budget every time. Schedule a consultation today and see the difference that experience makes.