7 Considerations for Commercial Landscaping Contracts
When it’s time to settle in for some exciting reading, there’s nothing like a landscape maintenance contract, right?
Mowing schedules! Payment options! Pruning details!
It’s got it all!
Or does it? Better make sure.
When you sign a landscape maintenance contract, you want to know exactly what you’re signing. What services are included? What happens when? Who do you contact if something’s not right?
Questions are good. Pretend you’re a curious 5-year-old. Here are seven to add to your list:
1. How Many Times Will They Mow?
Most landscape maintenance contracts include 38 times. So what months are they not mowing when they should be?
Tropical Gardens commercial landscaping contracts include 42 times.
It’s warmer earlier and later in the year now here in Sarasota than it used to be. That means your grass grows more and needs those extra mowings.
2. How Many Lawn Care and Plant Health Care Visits?
Most lawn care companies include four visits for lawn care and two for plant health care in their landscape maintenance contracts.
Before you sign on their dotted line, are you sure that’s enough?
It really isn’t.
When a lawn care company does only four visits, they might miss an important window for treating insects like chinch bugs, sod webworms or grubs. Or for adding micro nutrients and iron crucial for thriving lawns.
Just four visits don’t allow for smaller, more frequent fertilizer applications needed here in Sarasota, where nutrients flow right through our sandy soil.
Lawns here need more frequent fertilizing, but with smaller amounts, so those important nutrients have a better chance of feeding the roots than draining right through into the groundwater.
Make sure your landscape maintenance contract includes more visits. Tropical Gardens visits once a month for 8-10 months of the season, visiting more often and applying smaller amounts of nutrients so they can really take hold.
3. How Often Will They Prune?
A couple times a year? Does it matter? Don’t get us started. (Too late.)
Tropical Gardens commercial landscaping contract calls for trimming and pruning every month. That’s much healthier for plants — and makes them look much better — than chopping them way back less often.
4. Is the Contract Language Crystal Clear? Or Muddy?
Make sure you know exactly what you’re getting in your landscape maintenance contract before you sign.
It might say you’ll be charged extra if chinch bug activity is “outside normal.”
That’s pretty vague. What do they consider normal activity? How much extra? Chinch bugs can be shifty, right?
Details matter. Make sure your commercial landscaping contract has plenty, detailing exactly each service they include.
Your landscape maintenance contract should also include how often they’ll perform each service. You want to know how extensively they’ll take care of your property.
Don’t sign a commercial landscaping contract if the details are murky.
5. Is the Price Super Cheap? Don’t Get Too Excited
Everybody wants a good deal.
But if a landscape maintenance contract price seems too low, sorry — it’s probably too good to be true.
Are they making up for their lower cost by skipping services you need? Cutting corners? Not training their staff?
Don’t let your property suffer because of shortcuts made to keep that price so low.
6. What’s the Deal with Mulch?
Some landscape maintenance contracts include mulch in your cost. Sounds like a good deal, right?
But are they mulching when you need it?
One of our customers said they had this kind of contract at their last landscaping company. They hadn’t had new mulch in three years — even though they were paying for it.
A Tropical Gardens landscape maintenance contract charges separately for mulch.
Then we show up and deliver it, so it’s always at the optimal three inches to keep moisture in and weeds out.
7. How Often Will They Inspect Your Property?
Can’t find this in your landscape maintenance contract? That’s a problem. You want to know they’re on top of everything from your plant health to curb appeal to safety.
A Tropical Gardens commercial landscaping contract tells you our account managers walk your property every month. Can you stroll your site with us? Even better.
Can’t make it? No worries. We’ll send you photos of any problem areas we spot — along with our plan to fix it.
Ready to Sign a Super Solid Landscape Maintenance Contract? Talk to Us
OK, so a commercial landscape contract isn’t the most exciting reading. The back of your cereal box might be more captivating.
But grab a snack to make things fun and really read before you sign.
If something isn't clear, ask questions. Ask us anything — we dare you to stump us.
Let’s get started. We’ll help you figure it all out.
Give us a call or fill out our form today! Our team of Sarasota designers can’t wait to design the perfect outdoor haven for your backyard or vacation rental property.