How to Hire the Right Landscape Designer | Hutten & Co. Land & Shore | Landscapers Owen Sound
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Landscape Designer preparing a landscape.

So, you’ve decided to transform your yard by investing in a new landscape for your home — but how do you know which landscape designer to choose?

Change of any kind is exciting. It can also be a bit scary and overwhelming, especially when it involves something as personal as your living space. Designing and building a new landscape also requires a substantial investment — so you want to make sure to choose the right designer.

We’ve designed and built a lot of beautiful landscapes for our clients over the years, and they initially felt the same apprehension you might be feeling — after all, it’s not easy to entrust all your hopes and dreams to a designer you just met.  

So what put their minds at ease and helped them make the decision to work with us?

It all came down to these five deciding factors.


Landscape Designer property.

1. Empathy and active listening skills.

You may have great ideas for your landscape, but without the right landscape designer to bring them to life, they’re just ideas. That’s why good listening skills are crucial when choosing a designer to work with. 

Your potential designer should be just as excited about your project as you are — they should be engaged, actively listening and asking helpful, probing questions about your ideal landscape. These questions are two-fold. They help the designer understand your goals and if the right questions are asked, they can expand on your vision so your landscape turns out better than you ever imagined.

Look for them to ask questions about who uses your space (for example, do you have kids or pets who will use the yard?), how you’d like to use your space (are you looking for a place to relax, play games, entertain?) and which features you’d like to include. There are some things you might not have even considered — such as adding a swim spa if your yard is too small for a pool.

2. Training, credentials and experience.

This may sound like a given, but you want to make sure the designer you hire has the proper training and credentials. This could include college or university degrees, professional accreditations, special licensing or other professional designations.

But you’re looking for more than just a piece of paper — you’re looking for someone who is experienced, has an inspiring portfolio, creative flair and is easy to work with. After all, you’re inviting these people into your home, so you want to make sure your personalities align.

3. An inspiring portfolio of previous work.

A professional landscaping company should have a portfolio of completed projects to show you and inspire you. You want to look at examples of their past work to make sure they have the experience to complete your project and the artistic intelligence to bring it to life.

It can be fun and inspiring to see how others have transformed their landscapes —  and you can get an idea of what’s possible for yours!

Backyard view of Georgian Bay.

4. Positive reviews and testimonials.

The best way to determine what your experience might be like with a particular designer or landscape company is to rely on the experience of others — and the internet makes this easy!

So take your time and do a little research. Look for testimonials on their website as well as reviews from outside sources. You can find some of ours on Houzz and Google.

If you have friends and neighbours who have used landscape design services they can also provide you with some valuable insights.

5. Clear and prompt communication.

Before you commit to a designer, give some thought to your experience with them so far. 

  • Did you receive a prompt and courteous response to your initial inquiry?
  • Was it clear what your next steps should be?
  • If an initial meeting was scheduled to discuss your project, did they show up on time?
  • If you had questions that needed answering, was it clear who you should contact?
  • Did they seem eager and excited about your project?

There are a lot of things to consider before you choose your designer — and if we were to add a sixth factor it would be to go with your gut. Stellar resumes, stunning portfolios and glowing testimonials are a good place to start… but when it comes to making a decision you’ll know when it feels right. 

The designers at Hutten & Co. would love to sit down with you to discuss your project, inspire you and see your outdoor vision come to life — and help you connect with the wonders of nature and each other while enjoying your beautiful new landscape.

Backyard and pool of the Southhampton Property.

What are the next steps?

First, check out some of our featured projects — you’re sure to find tons of inspiration there!

If you like what you see (and we’re sure you will!), you can book a meeting here or call 519.376.9364.

We want to make sure you have all the tools you need to choose the right landscape designer — so if you’re not quite ready to commit, or you have some unanswered questions, we encourage you to reach out anyways.

We want to see your vision come to life as much as you do, and we’re always happy to help!

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