By Brian A Schmidt
You have finished another hard and stressful day at the office (or store… or factory… or wherever). You have fought the traffic to get to your neighborhood. Turning the corner to your street you see this beautifully landscaped yard. Pulling into the driveway you admire the gently cascades of the bridal wreath blossoms. Stepping out from your vehicle the scent of the lilacs enwraps you with its peaceful, calming fragrance.
Ahhhh. It’s good to be home. You can’t put a price on this type of stress-relief.
Today we all live a fast paced, stress-filled world. Our homes should be a safe haven from that rat-race we call our work life. And we should be able to experience the feel of that sanctuary as soon as we pull into the driveway.
A nicely landscaped yard has a calming affect. The scents from the gardens can instill a feeling of peace – Whether it’s the perfume of the roses or simply the aromatic evergreens.
You feel relaxed and even somewhat rejuvenated as you cross the threshold of your palace.
Can Landscaping be an investment?
Landscaping if often times not viewed as an asset to your home. However there are many ways in which your well spent landscaping dollars can actually provide a return on your investment.
Many home-owners are reluctant to spend their time and money in providing their home with a pleasing streetscape. However when well thought out, the money spent could well add value to the home far beyond what was spent.
A neat and tidy front yard leaves a lasting impression on friends, relatives, business partners, clients… and potential home-buyers. It is seen as a reflection of the home-owner and how the home is being looked after.
Purchasers would be more inclined to pay “your price” for your home if it appears neat, tidy and well looked after.
You have just increased the value of your home.
Another way that landscaping can provide an ROI is in the placement and type of trees and shrubs. Utility costs can be reduced. The shade from a deciduous tree placed carefully can reduce your home air-conditioning bill.
That same tree with its leaves gone for winter can allow the warming rays of the winter sun to reduce your winter heating bill. There’s money in your pocket that can stay in your pocket for years to come.
Trees in your yard, when well placed, can actually increase their value to the property as they mature.
You don’t have to break the bank to get an appealing landscape. Well planned landscaped yards - even when the design is modest - can sometimes be more powerful than expensive landscapes which are undisciplined.
Landscaping can most certainly be an asset to your property.
Should you landscape now or later?
“You have but one chance to make a first impression.” We have all heard this old saying. If you procrastinate over landscaping, your visitors and passers-by will be forming their opinions of you and your property.
Remember the list of people we discussed above? Your boss, your partners, your clients, even your friends and family will form and adjust their opinions of you based on that “first impression”.
The sooner you react and provide an aesthetically pleasing landscape the sooner you will have the opportunity to impress all of these people who impact your life.
Is there a monetary value that can be placed on that?
Are there Healthy Benefits in Landscaping?
Some of the emotional benefits have already been mentioned above. There are more emotional benefits that can be attributed to landscaping as well. These all depend on your physiology and lifestyle.
But there are other definite benefits in providing landscaping to your yard.
Plants, shrubs and trees can create a micro-climate around your home with increased air quality. When you “air-out” your home wouldn’t it be nice to have the freshest air possible coming in?
Simply by maintaining your landscaping yourself your will get some healthy benefits. I enjoy “working” in the gardens. Both my wife and I spend hours in the gardens melting away the week’s stresses. Despite the work, we find it very relaxing and rewarding.
It’s surprising how much exercise you can get without even realizing it. You will be stretching and bending; lifting and pulling. We’re only talking about a little hoeing and weeding and such. Not much but just enough to get the muscles working and the adrenaline flowing.
When you are done it’s time to relax and enjoy the fruits of your labors. That sense of accomplishment and well-being can not be bought.
Landscaping for Aesthetics
We spoke of the streetscape aesthetics and what it can mean to your home’s value. But you may have an area in yard or even a large blank wall that could use some sprucing up.
Perhaps you have an old metal workshop building – you know – one that is no longer pleasing to look at but is still very functional.
These areas can be disguised, soften or even act as a backdrop to some plantings. Imagine that shed wall or that large blank house wall as a canvas for you to express your artistic side on.
Trellises can provide support for flowering vines and climbing roses. Some vines will attach themselves directly to a brick wall. A shrub or two will soften the corners of a shed or other outbuilding.
By doing some simple planning and adding a few strategically placed plants you can reclaim the view of these otherwise “eyesores”.
Your efforts in providing an aura of peace and relaxation may actually take to you to another level. You will be seen as being a friend of the environment. You may even be seen as a community leader.
After all, your are beautifying your neighborhood (as well as your home) and providing a cleaner environment. These are benefits that can last for years to come.
Your children and grandchildren and their grand children could benefit from the little bit of effort (or enjoyment) that you put into your landscaping today.
Your Home is Indeed Your Castle
When you have completed your landscaping you will be proud to call your home your castle. For that pleasure you have invested a little time and money that will continue to provide you with many ROI’s… financially, physically and emotionally.
You will be living in a better environment which will benefit your health, emotions and general well being. Your home will be a much happier and more pleasant place for you and your family.
Brian A Schmidt is the author and publisher of a Pre-Fabricated Metal Building website. He lives in a small community in Southwestern Ontario, Canada. Having owned his own construction company Brian has been a long time construction manager including working with a low-rise residential metal buildings fabricator, Brian enjoys gardening and woodworking in his backyard workshop. Brian enjoys traveling with his wife - especially on cruise vacations.