Lawn Care and Landscaping: Does It Impact Property Value?Research Says Yes
Nobody wants an uglier lawn than their neighbor, especially if they’re selling their home.
It’s no surprise then why the lawn care and landscaping industry continues to grow, currently worth over $77 billion. But when you’re selling your home, it’s hard to pin down the return on investment on lawn care and landscaping. Do these things boost property value? For us, our best answer is yes—and there seems to be a lot of evidence.
The Value of Lawn Care And Landscaping
Home guides are all over the place with actual estimates on the value of lawn care and landscaping. One home design editor in San Francisco said home value rises between 5.5 percent to 12.7 percent. The Lawn Institute claims it’s more around 15 to 20 percent, and a 2012 Texas Tech University study said the impact is a 10 to 12 percent “increase in property value.”
Regardless of the precise figure, it’s apparent that there’s a substantial ROI when you invest in lawn care and landscaping. In fact, there’s already a good chance you were investing in these services before selling your home. The concept of curb appeal—the attractiveness of a house or a piece of property when viewed from the sidewalk—affects not only a prospective buyer but you as well.
A 2016 Landscape and Urban Planning study said homeowners want good-looking lawns “not only because it conforms to neighborhood landscaping norms,” but also because they are reflective of “good character, work ethic, and caring.” The study further said a “lush, green lawn may bolster property values while a lawn that fails to conform to neighborhood norms may be perceived as a financial or social liability.”
In an interview with the New York Times, Frank Rossi, a horticulture professor at Cornell University, who described himself as a “turf guy,” said homeowners “want to fit in with the neighborhood,” and lawns nowadays tend to play a major role in a property’s appearance and attract more attention.
Since the benefits are well-reported, we should now consider practical steps for improving the outside greenery and vegetation of your property.
Lawn Care Tips
Even if you don’t plan on selling your property right away, proper lawn care will make sure your yard is in good shape when you do. Here are some tips to help.
Watering Your Lawn
Watering properly is the most crucial thing to get right. If you don’t water properly, then it doesn’t matter if you hire the best lawn service out there. Here are two major tips:
- Water when the sun is not too high. Get up early in the morning or go out in the late evening to water your lawn. The sun radiates too strongly most the day. That’s why you need to pick a cooler time of day, so your lawn will have time to absorb the water.
- Keep a strict watering schedule. It’s recommended you water your lawn 3 to 4 times a week during the growing season (spring and fall), though use a little less during the winter season.
The Basics of Lawn Mowing
Lawn mowing, believe it or not, is more than running the machine across your grass. The tips below will ensure you do this correctly.
- Remember the one third rule. Never cut more than a third of new growth off your lawn during each mow. Grass cutting really short seem more efficient, but this will dry out your grass and prevent roots from developing well.
- Mow your grass 2 to 4 times per month. Lawns grow quite fast, especially during the summer, so it’s important to keep a disciplined mowing schedule.
- Mow when your grass is dry. Mowing wet grass is risky because it’s easier for your mower to create ruts and damage your lawn.
- Mow with sharp blades. If you mow with dull blades, your grass will tear and weaken it against diseases and pests.
Landscaping services are generally more costly than lawn care services, however, you can make small adjustments that will boost the appearance of your property.
- Tree-Planting: Your property can potentially increase in home value from $1000 to $10,000 from planting just one tree. The aesthetic appeal and provision of shade will make your property look more natural and welcoming. Trees also prevent soil erosion. However, make sure you choose the right type of tree because some have root systems that may grow too deep and damage the foundation of the house.
- Botanicals And Herbs: A flowerbed or a garden will add color to your landscape. There are numerous breeds that are easy to grow and maintain. Simple ones to consider are asters, chrysanthemum, lavender, and yarrow.
- Irrigation Improvement: Although it’s not an obvious renovation, improved irrigation will save you and your future homeowner water expenses. In general, a third of a household’s water bill is spent on landscaping, so install low-water-use irrigation systems and you’ll save dramatically.
- Edging: You should add natural borders around your landscape. When you’re edging, use mulch to cover your property rather than plastic or metal. Natural edging makes your property more scenic, and it’s easier to maintain in the long-term.