“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.”  – Benjamin Franklin

You have heard this quote before right? Your Father, Camp Counselor, or TED Talk speaker may have mentioned it a time or two. Here at Summit we are firm believers that preparing and planning for your project ahead of time means less headaches and change orders later.

We thought we would sit down and put a list of questions together to think about when planning out your outdoor living space project. Some of the questions we will ask about when you call to make an appointment, others we will dive into during your initial meeting. The answers help us develop a clear picture of your thoughts and ideas for the project, and make sure we are all on the same page. It’s not a perfect list, and all of the questions may not apply to your project in particular, but it’s a good starting point, not too long, and somewhat lighthearted.

What kind of work are you interested in completing?

  • Design/Planning
  • Hardscape – Paver or Tile Patio / Path / Seat Wall / Driveway / Pool Deck / Permeables / Stairs
  • Outdoor Living Elements – Outdoor Kitchen / BBQ / Firepit / Fireplace
  • Pergola – Wood / Aluminum / Louvered / Covered
  • New Construction Project
  • Low Voltage LED Lighting (non Christmas lights)
  • Commercial Project

When would you like to have the work start?

  • By a specific time for an upcoming wedding, graduation, or event
  • Next available opening
  • Not in a huge hurry
  • ASAP – the dogs and mud are making me insane and my neighbors can see everything I am doing

When was your house built?

  • New construction
  • Old enough that it’s time to refresh and renovate
  • Woodrow Wilson was President

What is the approximate size of the area to be landscaped?

Do you have a current scaled landscape plan?

Do you have a plot plan for the property?

Do you have any design boards or ideas?

  • Houzz
  • Pinterest
  • Instagram
  • Pictures/Magazine Articles

Do you have a specific design style?

  • Contemporary
  • Farmhouse
  • Eclectic
  • Mountain
  • Minimalist
  • Traditional
  • Craftsmen
  • Tiki Hut

Are there any specific elements/plants/trees you want to see in the landscape?

  • More specific details to the items listed in the first question, ie. pizza oven, snap cut flagstone, bubbler rock

Are there any specific elements/plants/trees you are against?

  • It’s ok, not everyone likes roses and lilacs
  • Red flagstone is a very specific material
  • Grass is a 5 letter word

If you are part of an HOA, do you have a submittal/approval process or a set of guidelines to follow?

Do you have a budget for the total project?

  • $10,000-$20,000
  • $20,000-$50,000
  • $50,000-$100,000
  • $100,000-$200,000
  • Whatever it takes

Are there any challenges, access problems, or unique issues at your property?

  • Slope/Grade
  • No side or back access
  • Llamas that spit/livestock/electric fences

What is the purpose of this project?

  • To entertain
  • Get outside more
  • Place for kids and pets to play
  • Solve issues like drainage or those mentioned in the previous question
  • Improve the overall value of the property
  • Renovation
  • Beautification
  • Add privacy
  • Make your neighbors jealous

Any additional information you would like to share about the project?