Lighting your home for the holidays is the perfect way to add seasonal cheer to your neighborhood. Whether your display is large or small, it helps to work with a landscape professional.
"Hiring a landscape company means no more trips to the big-box store for replacement lights, extra cords, extra bulbs, etc.," says Lori Anewalt, co-owner of Anewalt's Landscaping and Contracting in Bernville, Pennyslvania. That's a huge time savings, especially during the season that most stores are at their busiest.
Landscape professionals also have access to high-quality specialty products you might not be able to find on your own, says Mark Borst, owner of Borst Landscape and Design in Allendale, New Jersey. These products are a fantastic way to set your home apart from your neighbors, and more efficient products can cut back on your energy usage.
If you're a trendsetter, landscape professionals also stay ahead of the trends. They're aware of what's going on nationally -- as well as in your neighborhood.
When considering decorating your home's exterior yourself, don't forget about safety. Landscape professionals are trained to scale trees and climb on potentially snowy roofs.
According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, more than 10,000 people were sent to the hospital emergency room after holiday-decorating incidents.
You can also count on your landscaper to do it right and not try to jam too many cords into one outlet, creating the risk of fire, Anewalt says.
Working with a landscaper to help with your holiday lighting saves you from having to put the lights up and take them down, as well as having to deal with storage. "Many companies provide storage services, which makes the decorating process as easy as possible for clients," says Sabeena Hickman, CEO of PLANET, the Professional Landcare Network, a trade association for landscapers. Many companies offer the option of storing your lights and decor at your home. You might also be able to save space by having your landscaper hold on to your decorations during the off-season.
When choosing a landscaper to help with your holiday lighting, look for a company that offers trained employees and can show you a portfolio of ideas, says Mark Borst, owner of Borst Landscape and Design in Allendale, New Jersey. It's important to select a company that fits well with your personal style. Communication is key, so pay attention to communication style and skills also. To get the best possible display, you'll need to ensure the company understands your style.
Additionally, Sabeena Hickman, CEO of PLANET (the Professional Landcare Network), suggests looking for companies that are members of professional organizations and have state licenses or certifications.
During the holidays, landscapers can do more than remove snow (if you live in a cold-winter climate) and hang lights: They can supply fresh-cut garlands, wreaths, and containers for your front entry, deck, or patio.
You can count on landscape professionals to know what materials will hold up to your climate, especially if you want to create displays that continue to dress up your home through early spring.