Invest in the professionals for the best landscape outcome

Landscape installation work, including sprinkler systems and maintenance, can cost thousands of dollars. Using a qualified, professional contractor is a must to get value for your money and to help ensure a return on investment and increased property values.

As the largest statewide association for landscape contractors, ALCC recommends the following advice in choosing the right contractor and services for your landscape.

When and How to Hire an ALCC member

What services do you want?

• Determine how the landscape will be used (entertaining, children's play area, outdoor living space, etc.)

• Consider design services, plant selection, construction, and maintenance.

• Decide if you plan to care for areas of the landscape yourself or if you prefer to have a contractor provide the ongoing maintenance.

Are they professional?
When selecting a contractor, talk to a few different companies. Ask them:

1. How long has the firm been in business? This will give you an idea of their knowledge about Colorado's climate and environmental conditions.

2. What certifications and professional affiliations do the company and/or employees hold?

3. Find out how they incorporate industry Best Management Practices.

4. Does the firm intend to use subcontractors?

5. Get proof of insurance for liability and workers' compensation, and ask what local licenses and permits will be required.

Demonstrations of professionalism

Dress: ALCC member company crews wear a company shirt so you know that person is supposed to be on the job site. They are also equipped with boots and PPE (personal protective equipment).

Promotional Materials: Our members come prepared with business cards, brochures, and a quality portfolio. They can also provide a website address for more information.

Contracts and Design: ALCC members create professional designs that show you what you're buying. The bids are detailed and complete, and the contracts spell out the work, payment plan, and how to handle disputes, if they arise.

Trucks and Equipment: Trucks and equipment are kept clean, labeled with the company name, and look well maintained. The ALCC logo is in the window.

Logo: We believe that logos should be updated and crisp, with a tagline that makes a quick statement that our members are landscape professionals operating in the 21st century.

Calling prospective customers back: Our members call customers back within 24 hours. If the job is not the right fit or they are too busy to do it within the customer's timeframe, our members refer them to a qualified company or the alcc.com find a pro database.

Calling customers back: We call customers back within 24 hours. If there's a problem on the site, we try to call you before you have to call us. That's just good business.

Troubleshooting: ALCC members NEVER argue with a customer. They negotiate. This isn't just a job, it's a relationship.

Checking in: Members make a point to ask our customers "How are we doing?". And we don't just ask, we listen. The answers help our members become better companies. They also follow-up a couple months after the project is done to make sure the customer is still happy.

Professional Affiliation: ALCC member companies don't just belong to ALCC, they get involved. They join up with other organizations too, because their members are the people we work for!

Certification: Members put CLT on every job site they can and give raises when employees earn certification. They also send their people to the BMP training every year at ProGreen.

Community Involvement: We want to give something back whenever we can and we look for ways to help out. It's the right thing to do and it's a good part of our marketing mix.

Get references

  • Visit current in-progress jobs. Not only can this be fun, but you can view the crew's appearance and job site to see if they are generally tidy. (Remember that construction sites will not be pristine).
  • Check with the Better Business Bureau. If there are complaints, read them to see how they have been resolved.

Talk to past and present customers and ask:

  1. Did the contractor display good work habits, return calls promptly and keep appointments?
  2. Did the contractor honor the contract and respond to concerns expressed by the customer?
  3. Would the customer hire the firm again?

Get it in writing

  • Professional firms will have written estimates and contracts that include the scope of work, estimated time of completion, total costs, payment methods, warranties and possibly dispute resolution options should a conflict arise.
  • Review the contract carefully before signing.

Hire an ALCC member for your landscape work
ALCC members will strive to satisfy the above criteria. With more than 700 members statewide, the Associated Landscape Contractors of Colorado is the professional trade association for Colorado's landscape construction, irrigation and maintenance contractors and designers. 

For more than 50 years, ALCC has set high standards of professionalism and business integrity for its members. ALCC members receive the latest information and techniques, including efficient water management and use, that help landscapes thrive in Colorado's tough growing conditions. Together, we are better by nature.

Choose your contractor wisely and you'll have a landscape you can be proud of.

 

 
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