Why Builders Should Request Landscape Allowances
When people hire professionals to build their dream homes, they want someone with skilled expertise related to materials, layout and finishes. At the same time, they also want builders who will consider their personal preferences. To meet a customer’s unique desires, some builders offer landscape allowances that allocate money toward exterior features. If you’ve considered adopting this practice, keep reading.
The Importance of Landscaping
When it surrounds a brand new home, a well-landscaped yard is a beautiful sight to behold. Moreover, it can add significant value to a property. In fact, researchers at the Department of Horticulture at Virginia Tech found that a $150,000 home without landscaping could sell for an additional $8,300 to $19,000 with just a few landscaping features. This study is consistent with other research that indicates that landscaping can boost property value by 12 to 15 percent.
At the same time, good landscaping can also prevent water from seeping into a basement or backyard. Strategic landscaping can also improve energy-efficiency, create more privacy, enhance livability and reduce soil degradation.
Essentially, a landscaping allowance is an agreement between homeowners and builders, which ensures that money is set aside within the construction budget for landscaping purposes. Just as a building budget has values for fixtures, plumbing and other key features, is can also be segmented to include a value for landscaping. This ensures that the homeowner’s budget will not be exhausted without fulfilling his or her desire for specific exterior features.
Is it Right for Everyone?
From a buyer’s point of view, landscaping looks like a no-brainer; however, the benefits don’t always outweigh the costs. Before offering a landscaping allowance, builders should explain if that money will force a homeowner to compromise on key interior features. If there’s only so much money in a budget, sacrifices may become necessary. Great landscaping may not mean as much if the homeowner has to forgo other home features.
Likewise, builders should consider the potential costs associated with a landscaping allowance. For example, if the builder can do the landscaping himself, there shouldn’t be any loss in revenue. On the other hand, if the homeowner insists on using a third-party landscaping company, the builder stands to lose a portion of the building budget.
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