Typical Landscaping Costs You Can Expect

By Kevin Brouillard · December 21, 2023 · 8 minute read

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Typical Landscaping Costs You Can Expect

Creating a beautifully landscaped home can improve your day-to-day life and also increase the resale value of your home, making it well worth the investment. The question is, how much will it cost?

Landscaping costs range widely depending on the size, design, and scope of the project, and whether you plan to do it yourself or hire a professional. On average, however, a landscaping project can run between $1,268 and $6,003, according to Angi (formerly Angi’s List).

Whether you’re thinking about sprucing up your front yard, back yard, or both, here’s a look at what’s involved, how much it can cost, plus tips for how to budget for and finance a landscaping project.

What Are Some Benefits of Landscaping?

If you’re like many homeowners, you may prioritize interior upgrades over outdoor improvements. But improving your landscaping can actually be the gift that keeps on giving — it can beautify your space, increase your home value, and even decrease your heating and cooling expenses.

According to a recent report from the National Association of REALTORS®, an overall landscape upgrade (and even smaller projects like keeping up with yard maintenance), can pay for itself when you sell your home.

Investing in landscaping can also make your home more efficient. Planting leafy trees strategically around your property, for example, can keep your home cooler during the summer and warmer during the winter, reducing your energy bills.

Landscaping can also have environmental benefits beyond your property. The trees, bushes and flowers that make up your landscaping are natural air purifiers — they remove air pollutants from the atmosphere and store carbon dioxide, improving air quality, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Landscaping can also improve local water quality by absorbing and filtering rainwater.

💡 Quick Tip: Home improvement loans typically offer lower interest rates than credit cards. Consider a loan to fund your next renovation.

What Are Some Current Landscaping Trends?

Some of the top landscaping trends for 2023 and 2024 include:

•  Climate-conscious landscaping Many homeowners are seeking out sustainable landscaping revamps, such as replacing lawns with alternative species (like clover) or re-wilding their yards with native species that require far less maintenance, water, and fertilizer.

•  Colorful gardens After years of soft greens, pastels, and neutrals, landscape designers are favoring brighter, more joyful designs. Plants that provide color and as support local pollinators (like birds, butterflies, and bees) are particularly popular. Examples include native sunflowers, coneflowers, garden phylox, and asters.

•  Organic layouts Lanscape design is getting less fussy. Many homeowners are mixing and matching different kinds of plants, including wildflowers, and adding romantic touches like arbors and winding garden paths.

•  Incorporating metals From wrought iron gates to metal planter boxes and sculptures, many homeowners are adding metal accents to their outdoor spaces.

Recommended: The Top Home Improvements to Increase Your Home’s Value

How to Budget for Landscaping

A good first step for coming up with your landscaping budget is to actually ignore numbers and give yourself permission to dream — what does your ideal landscaping look like? What does it feel like?

Next, walk around your property and create a list of both needs and wants. In your “needs” column, list repairs that must be done for safety’s sake, ranging from drainage challenges, broken fences, toxic plants that need to be removed, tree removal, and so forth.

Also imagine what the property could look like with the stunning new landscaping you’re envisioning. Perhaps some of the ideas listed above have inspired you in an unexpected direction. Have fun and add these ideas to your “wants” column.

Now, prioritize your list and be clear about which items are optional (perhaps a special trellis for climbing roses) and which are not (trip hazards where you plan to add outdoor seating).

Next, determine how much you can realistically spend on landscaping, keeping in mind how quality landscaping can add significant value to your home. Then, it might make sense to talk to several professional landscapers to get estimates.

Professionals will also be able to let you know if your plans are realistic for your property. Even if you intend to do some of the work yourself, these professionals will likely share information you have not yet considered. (Hiring them in the off-season might save you money, too.)

Once you determine the scope and cost of your project, it’s a good idea to add a cushion of 10% to 20% for the unexpected. When you have a final number to work with, you’ll need to determine if you can fund the project out of savings, or if you’ll need to finance any part of your landscaping plan (more on that below).

Recommended: Four Ways to Upgrade Your Home

How Much Does Landscaping Cost?

The average landscaping project in the U.S. costs $3,494, but ranges between $1,268 and $6,003. Of course, you can spend a lot less than the average if you’re just sprucing up your front garden beds. You can also spend considerably more if your plan is to build a backyard oasis with a pool and outdoor kitchen.

How much your landscaping revamp will ultimately cost will depend on your yard size, the type of landscaping you want to do, and the landscaper’s labor costs.

Generally speaking, backyard landscaping projects cost more than front yard projects. The cost of the average front-yard spruce-up runs between $1,500 to $5,000, whereas a full backyard renovation can range between $15,000 to $50,000.

If you plan to use a designer for your project, it can run $50 to $150 per hour for a professional landscape designer to come up with an artistic direction for your space, choose the plants, and manage the project. The average cost to hire a landscape designer is $4,600. If you’re planning to do a major structural renovation, you may want to hire a landscape architect, which can run $70 to $150 per hour.

Recommended: Home Renovation Cost Calculator

What Is Landscaping Cost Per Square Foot?

Landscaping costs are influenced by a variety of factors, including geography, type of project, and the materials used. Figuring out the dimensions of the project area, however, can help you come up with ballpark cost estimates.

According to Angi, the cost of landscaping runs between $4.50 and $12 per square foot for basic services and intermediate projects, such as aerating, flower planting, and installing garden beds. However, if you’re planning a major tear-out and remodel, you can expect to spend as much as $40 per square foot.

How Much Does New Landscaping Installation Cost?

Starting from scratch can be challenging, but having a blank slate also opens up possibilities for curating your outdoor spaces.

To fully landscape a new home, you’ll want to budget around 10% of your property value. So if you purchased the home for $350,000, you can anticipate spending around $35,000 to both hardscape (add hard surfaces like brick, concrete, and stone) and softscape (add living things) across your front and backyards.

Recommended: 5 Driveway Improvement Ideas

What Will It Cost to Maintain Landscaping?

In addition to the initial outlay, you’ll also need to set aside an annual budget to help with upkeep. The amount of maintenance you’ll need will depend on landscape design, local climate, and how much of a DIY approach you’re comfortable with.

Lawn-mowing can run anywhere from $50 to $250 per service, while getting your trees trimmed averages $1,800 per job. For all-around yard maintenance, like weeding and mulching, you might find a landscaper who charges an hourly rate (often $50 to $100 per hour) or charges a flat rate per job.

Keep in mind that mowing, trimming back shrubs, weeding, and mulching are also jobs you can likely do yourself, which will cut down on your landscape maintenance costs.

What Are Some Options to Finance a Landscaping Project?

If you want to invest in your home through landscaping but the price point is above what you have in savings, you may want to look into financing. Here are two common types of loans for landscaping.

Financing a Landscaping Project With a Home Equity Loan

A home equity loan gives you access to cash by tapping into the equity you have in your home. Your home equity is the difference between your home’s current market value and what you owe on your mortgage. Depending on the lender and your credit profile, you may be able to borrow up to 75% to 85% of your home’s current equity.

You can use a home equity loan for various purposes, including home upgrades like new landscaping. Because your home serves as collateral for the loan, you may qualify for a lower interest rate than on some other financial products, like personal loans and credit cards. If you have trouble repaying the loan, however, your lender could foreclose on your home. You’ll also pay closing costs with a home equity loan.

Financing a Landscaping Project With a Personal Loan

You can also use a personal loan to fund any type of home improvement project, including upgrading the outside of your home.

Personal loans for home improvement generally have fixed interest rates and a fixed repayment timeline. You’ll receive all the funds upfront, generally soon after you’re approved, and your monthly payments will be fixed for the duration of your loan.

Personal loans are typically unsecured, making them less risky than home equity loans, and don’t come with closing costs. They also tend to be faster to fund than home equity loans, which means you can get your landscape project going sooner. However, because personal loans are unsecured (which poses more risk to the lender), rates are typically higher than rates for home equity loans.

💡 Quick Tip: Generally, the larger the personal loan, the bigger the risk for the lender — and the higher the interest rate. So one way to lower your interest rate is to try downsizing your loan amount.

The Takeaway

Landscaping projects can add curb appeal and value to your home, and can be well worth the time, effort, and money you invest.

The average cost of a landscaping project nationwide is $3,494. Of course you could spend a lot less if you are looking at a small project, like swapping out plants in your front garden. Or, you could spend significantly. Installing a swimming pool, for example, can run $40,000-plus.

If you don’t have enough cash in the bank to cover your landscaping project, you may want to consider getting a loan, such as a home equity loan or a personal loan.

Ready to get started on your landscaping project? Consider a SoFi Personal Loan. SoFi offers competitive fixed rates and same-day funding. Checking your rate takes just a minute.

SoFi’s Personal Loan was named NerdWallet’s 2024 winner for Best Personal Loan overall.

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Third-Party Brand Mentions: No brands, products, or companies mentioned are affiliated with SoFi, nor do they endorse or sponsor this article. Third-party trademarks referenced herein are property of their respective owners.


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