Landscaping is usually the most expensive line item on an HOA’s budget. While it requires the biggest investment, it also presents the most opportunity to save money. Before you revamp or replant, consider the following seven ways to cut costs on HOA landscaping.
1. Hire a Professional Landscape Designer
A professional landscape architect or designer can maximize your budget dollars while taking into account long-term maintenance. Hiring a professional landscape architect may be a significant investment in the short run, but their experience and expertise can save you serious money in the long run. Having a solid plan is, by far, the best way to save money on your HOA landscaping.
2. Join Forces with Other HOAs
Some HOAs band together with nearby associations to capitalize on collective buying power. If you can provide enough work, landscaping maintenance companies will offer discounts in exchange for the steady work. A group of HOAs can expect a 10-25% discount on quotes for a bulk contract.
3. Prioritize Landscaped Areas
Spend your money where it counts. Prioritize the most visible and visited areas and focus a good chunk of your money and efforts there. It’s better to have a strong impact in a few key areas than to spread the money thin across an entire area. Residents can then clearly see and appreciate where their money is invested.
4. Don’t Just Choose the Cheapest Plants
Have you ever heard the saying, ‘The poor man buys twice’? That saying comes for the idea that when you buy cheap, you’re going to have to buy the item again sooner than if you invested in a higher quality item. The same is true for plants. You don’t want to buy the cheapest plants that won’t do well in certain areas or have to replant cheap flowers twice a year. It’ll end up costing you more money in the long run.
5. Choose Native Plants
Native plants are built to survive in your area— it’s literally in their DNA. Native plants will take root more easily, take less effort to maintain, and will save you time and money. Need we say more? It’s a win-win-win-win decision.
6. Landscaping Isn’t Limited to Plants
Consider ways a one-time investment can replace a lifetime of maintenance. For instance, a one-time purchase of matching urns or sculptures can flank an entrance instead of large flower pots. Also, consider hardscaping areas that are difficult to access and maintain. Landscapers factor in ease-of-access into their quotes.
7. Stay on Top of Watering Systems
Water bills can kill a budget. You must stay on top of your HOA’s watering system to avoid overwatering and costly leaks. Advise your landscapers to adjust the irrigation system and check for leaks on a regular basis. “Regular basis” should be clearly defined depending on the size of your association and your geographic location.
These seven suggestions will not only help your HOA save money, but will also make your committee’s job easier. These long- term landscaping solutions will require less work and less money to maintain for years to come.
Dreamscapes by Zury serves South Florida communities in Parkland, Boca Raton, Boynton Beach, Delray Beach, and nearby areas. We specialize in smart landscaping design that integrates beauty and function. Contact us to discuss cost-saving designs for your HOA landscaping.