Hiring a Landscaper in Woodstock Illinois
So your yard is not looking so nice and you are in need of an affordable landscaping service in Woodstock IL but don’t know how to find one. And since you take great pride in your home, you want to make sure you hire the right contractor. Choosing the right landscaper can not only result in a much more attractive lawn and garden, but can also add enjoyment to your summer outdoor activities. And if you should be in the market to sell your house, any realtor will tell you that a successful sale is all about curb appeal. The range of services that you have at your disposal can be as basic as having your lawn cut once a week to having a landscape designer or architect transform your yard to suit your own sense of style. Perhaps your trees need trimming and your shrubs need pruning? And in the winter, most landscaping companies offer snow removal services as well. Whatever your needs, choosing from among the various local landscaping companies can take some time and research on your part. After all, if you ultimately are not happy with the results, it’s not like you can return your yard for a refund. But there is an easy way to find highly skilled and reputable landscaping contractors in your area. We’ll talk more about that later. First, let’s discuss how to perform your due diligence when hiring a local contractor.
Not Just Lawn Mowing
For many Woodstock IL homeowners, their first introduction to a landscaping company is when they are looking for a service to mow their lawn. From there that need often develops into requiring a full service landscaper that can offer a broad menu of services. Even in the fall and winter months, the need can continue with leaf removal for the lawn as well as snow removal for driveways and sidewalks. So it is important to select a contractor that offers the wide range of services that you will need. Many will list the array of services they offer on their websites, providing colorful pictures of projects that they have worked on. Checking out their sites can be a good initial first step to finding the perfect match. An option that is becoming more popular is to use a referral service that matches the customer with experienced and screened landscaping contractors that work in their area. Some of the services that homeowners can receive proposals for include:
- Lawn mowing and maintenance
- Weed elimination and control
- Tree trimming and removal
- Bush and shrub trimming and pruning
- Sprinkler installation and repair
- Sod installation and grass seeding
- Tree, plant, bush and shrub planting
- Water features installation and maintenance
- Snow and leaf removal
Some Woodstock IL companies may offer additional services, such as installing outdoor lighting or brick patios and retaining walls. When making your inquiries, you will want to confirm that their main focus is either residential or commercial landscaping, depending on your needs. Also, if you have a unique project, such as a water feature, make sure that the landscaper has extensive experience installing them. Finally, you may want to inquire about seasonal contracts for your annual lawn care needs as well as fall leaf and winter snow removal.
How to Choose a Local Landscaping Contractor
Now that you know who they are and what they do, let’s take a look at some important steps you should take to find and hire a reputable contractor for landscaping at your home or place of business. The first thing that you should keep in mind is that you need to do your due diligence to protect yourself. Yes, there are City, County and State laws in place requiring minimum standards for licensed contractors. Although all contractors must follow the regulations in place, not all do. And even the most stringent laws will not protect you from poor workmanship, delays or unfinished projects. At least they won’t until after the fact when you are looking for restitution, which you may or may not receive. So it is important that you take the following steps to not only protect yourself but ensure that you are hiring a reliable Woodstock IL landscaping expert to maintain your lawn, garden or shrubberies.
- Get Referrals. Soliciting referrals from satisfied customers is a good way to find a reputable and professional Woodstock IL landscaping contractor. Friends, neighbors and family are always good resources to start with. Another option that is becoming more and more popular is obtaining quotes from services that pre-screen local contractors. They ensure that the contractors are licensed and certified professionals for your protection. You can obtain free quotes from local landscapers in your area by requesting a quote from the recommended service on this website.
- Be sure to verify Licenses and Credentials. It is a good idea to do some preliminary research into the background of the Woodstock IL contractors you are considering. Confirm that they hold all of the licenses required in Illinois or your City or Local Municipality. Check with the Better Business Bureau for any complaints as well as the Illinois Attorney General. Go online and check local reviews and visit their website. Find out if they hold any designations from professional organizations. All of these credentials and citations will give you an insight into not only their professionalism but their standing in your community.
- Meet with the Contractors. Once you have narrowed down the list to two or three candidates have them come to your home to see the job first hand. Make sure that all bids are based on the same specifications and cover all of your job requirements. If their bid is unusually high or even low, ask them why. Be sure to ask all pertinent questions, such as how long will the job take, or if they anticipate there will be any problems or delays. Be wary if the Woodstock IL landscaping contractor doesn’t ask you many questions about your requirements or concerns.
- Ask for and check References. Before making the final selection, ask for and check at least 3 Woodstock IL area references. Ask each previous customer if the job was completed to their utmost satisfaction. Ask if the job was completed on time and billed as quoted. Was there anything that the customer was not 100% satisfied with? Was there anything that they wish had been done differently? And finally, would they use the contractor again or recommend their service to their friends and family?
- And finally, get everything In Writing. After making your final selection, be sure to review all of the documents that your Woodstock IL landscaping contractor has prepared for you. Ask for certificates of insurance for the Workers Compensation as well as the Liability Insurance. Be sure to contact the insurance company to verify that the policies are both current. Verify that they will obtain a Building Permit if required for installation projects. Make sure that all services, materials and costs are included in detail in the final proposal. Also make sure that the deposit and payment schedule is specified so each party knows what is expected. Start and completion dates, dispute resolution, and warranties all should be covered in the final contract.
A Bit More About Woodstock Illinois
Woodstock is a city in and the county seat of McHenry County, Illinois, United States, located 51 miles (82 km) northwest of Chicago. The population was 25,528 at the start of 2017. The city's downtown includes a historic, turn-of-the-century town square, which is anchored by the landmark Woodstock Opera House and the Old McHenry County Courthouse. The city was named one of the nation's Dozen Distinctive Destinations in 2007 by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. The fictional town of Hawkins Falls, of the 1950s television soap opera Hawkins Falls, Population 6200, was patterned after Woodstock, Illinois.
Woodstock's was originally known as Centerville due to its location at the geographic center of McHenry County. It was chosen as the county seat on September 4, 1843. Early settler Alvin Judd developed a plat for the town, incorporating a two-acre public square, near which a 2-story frame courthouse and jail were constructed the following year by George C. Dean and Daniel Blair. In 1845, resident Joel Johnson proposed that Centerville be given a more original name, and so the town was renamed Woodstock after Johnson's hometown of Woodstock, Vermont. (The town was listed as "Center" on the 1850 Federal Census, however.) In 1852, Woodstock was incorporated as a village with Judd as president. In response to a growing population following the end of the Civil War, Woodstock was incorporated as a city in 1873. John S. Wheat was elected as Woodstock's first mayor. A vital artery for the growing town was the train line to and from Chicago, which allowed for a substantial industrial presence early in the town's history.
In 1895, Eugene V. Debs served a short federal prison sentence in the Woodstock Jail following the 1894 Pullman labor strike in Chicago. Debs, the former president of the American Railway Union, was held in Woodstock instead of Chicago because federal officials feared that he would be surrounded with too many sympathizers in a Chicago prison and therefore could have still incited further violence. Debs was instead assigned to a cell in the newly constructed Woodstock Jail, which occupied the lowest floor of the Woodstock Courthouse on the town square. During his time in jail, Debs received several influential socialist visitors and encountered the works of Karl Marx. He is said to have considered the Woodstock Jail one of the "greatest school[s]," and passed his time reading and writing many letters from his cell. By the time he was released in November 1895 (to great fanfare and before crowds of onlookers assembled in the Woodstock Square), Debs had become a socialist and a national celebrity. He later ran for the United States Presidency five times between 1900 and 1920 as the candidate for the newly formed Social Democratic Party.
During the early part of the 20th century, Woodstock had become "Typewriter City." Home to the factories of both the Emerson Typewriter Company and the Oliver Typewriter Company, Woodstock workers had built more than half the world's typewriters by 1922. The companies were very much a part of life in the city during this time. Both factories had active social clubs, baseball teams that competed against one another, and Emerson even had a well-regarded band that played at public events. In 1919, Emerson Typewriter became the Woodstock Typewriter Company. The city grew and flourished with increasing demand for Woodstock typewriters up through and after World War II. Initially the company sold typewriters for use in the war effort domestically and abroad, but even after the war's end returning servicemen, now familiar with the Woodstock brand, chose these models for their households. The factory was in use until 1970, and has since been converted into lofts.
Find the Right Landscaping Company in Woodstock IL
Searching for the right landscaping company is easier than you think. Just request your free estimates now! There is no obligation to receive free proposals from some of the top professional pre-screened landscapers servicing your area. Professional lawn care, snow removal and tree service professionals are standing by waiting to compete for your business. So what are you waiting for? Find the right Woodstock IL landscaping professional at the right price now!
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