Whether you just bought a new construction home or you’re purchasing an existing home from someone else, you’ll want to make the landscape all yours to complement your unique style. It can be overwhelming to get started, but coming up with a plan and budget first is key. Everything else will fall into place from there.

It’s best to hire a landscape contractor in San Francisco to guide you along the way, but in the meantime, here are some tips for landscaping your new home.

Come Up With a Wishlist

Before you do anything else, write down what you would like to have incorporated into your landscape, from grassy areas and patios to hardscapes and open spaces. Next, separate those wishlist items into two groups: “must haves” and “want to haves,” which is a great way to prioritize tasks according to budget. Show this list to your landscape designer so they know where your priorities lie when creating a master plan.

Establish a Budget

Landscaping isn’t a small project. It takes planning, saving, and dedication to making it happen. In order to ensure the project doesn’t get out of control and deplete your savings, take a minute to think about what you’d be comfortable spending on your landscaping. Create a spreadsheet of your income and monthly expenses, and see what you have left over. Start saving in a separate account, and use that account to fund your landscaping project. Sticking to your budget is the second part of the equation, which can be easier said than done.

Study Your Yard

Before crafting a plan, take some time to study your yard. Take note of the areas that get a lot of sun throughout the day, and which areas get shade. Take photos of the area to be landscaped every hour of daylight. This will tell you when the sun tends to shine the brightest and which ones are in shadow.

Consider wind patterns as well. If you notice wind comes from a particular direction on your property, you may not want to place your grill or firepit in that area, for instance.

Consider Your Lifestyle

Think about your family’s lifestyle and how you use your yard. Do you like to entertain a lot or do you like to relax in privacy most of the time? Do you have a large family with kids or is it just you and perhaps a spouse? Do you see yourself hosting large backyard parties with horseshoes and bonfires, or do you prefer quiet contemplation working in your garden each day? The answers to these questions will help you decide what kind of landscape you ultimately want.

Don’t just consider your lifestyle right now, though. Think about what your future may look like. Perhaps you don’t have kids now but plan to have lots of them later. Or maybe you have a busy family right now but soon all your kids will be grown and out of the house. Plan in the present with a nod to the future.

Research Plants

If flowers and a garden will be part of your landscape, don’t forget to do some research on the best ones for your climate and soil type. Not sure of your soil type? Get it tested. This will help you understand which nutrients your soil is lacking and what you need to do to make adjustments.

Remember when you studied the sun in your yard earlier? This will help you know where to plant certain flowers. Some need lots of sun, some need shade, and others need a combination of the two.

Consider the watering requirements of each plant or flower you choose and create a schedule so you don’t forget.

Come Up With a Game Plan

Do you plan on DIY’ing your landscape? It’s important to think about which items should be installed first, such as hardscaping. Then come up with a plan so you can gradually install the landscaping. Remember: take it slow, don’t rush things, and enjoy the process.

Accept Change

Just because you come up with a plan now doesn’t mean it won’t evolve later. Landscaping trends are fluid, as are your personal tastes throughout the year. Embrace the classics but also be open to change so you can have the flexibility to make adjustments that allow for an evolution of styles.

In the end, planning your landscape doesn’t have to be daunting. As said above, start with a plan and a budget, and everything will fall into place from there.

Book Your Landscape Design Project With Inside Out Landscaping

Need more tips to incorporate into your landscape? Our experts can give you a roadmap to create the landscape you’ve always wanted. Inside Out Landscaping is your source for design and build landscaping as well as landscape maintenance throughout San Francisco. Get your free quote when you contact us now at (415) 606-7122.