Should We Hire Someone To Put In A Yard? (Your Advice)

Your Advice - help answer readers' questionsTrying to evaluate when it is worthwhile to pay somebody to come in and help or do it yourself is sometimes difficult. The following reader has a question about what is the best option for improving the resale value of her house:

I have a question that I hope that you can help me with. We are going to be selling our house within the next year and one of the biggest problems we have is our yard. To tell the truth, we don’t have a yard at all, but a bunch of dirt and weeds. I have watched on many of those TV shows where they sell housed for profit that the yard is an important area to help increase the value and so I think it needs to be redone in order to get a better price for the house. I have three options that I can think of, but I’m not sure which of them would be best.

1. We try to get the yard in shape by ourselves. While this may be possible, since we haven’t done anything with it while we have lived here, I’m hesitant to go this route even though it would probably be the cheapest. I have a feeling that it won’t get done and at the very last minute we will have to pay to have somebody come in and do it in addition to what we pay before hand.

2. We hire landscapers to come in and put in plants and grass now so that they have time to establish themselves in the yard. Since we don’t take good care of our yard, this would mean that we would probably need to hire somebody to take care of it until the sale of the house was complete.

3. We leave the yard as it is for now and a few weeks before we put the house on the market, we had a hire landscapers to come in and redo the entire place. The plants won’t be established in the yard, but we won’t need to hire someone to maintain it until the sale

Which of these options do you think would be best to create highest resale value for the house? I’m looking for any opinions I can get and also if there may be other options which I have not thought about. Thank you for your time.

If this were your house, what recommendations would you make for the best way to proceed and create the highest resale value?

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4 Responses to Should We Hire Someone To Put In A Yard? (Your Advice)

  1. Wanderings says:

    I would go for #2 and plan on doing the same thing sometime soon. However, although my yard is a mess, it already has landscaping – albeit neglected landscaping! I live in AZ and landscaping here is fairly inexpensive so it’s not a tough decision. $$ aside, working on the yard in 100+ degree weather is just not for me.

  2. Brady says:

    I think it kind of depends on where you live, what the weather is like, and how big the yard is.

    Personally, I would do it myself since tilling and replanting is cheaper and can be done in a matter of hours.

  3. I’d hire it out. If the yard is dirt and weeds now, you’ll probably need sod laid and that’s heavy hard work.

    Other than that, upkeep should only be mowing, watering and weeding. However if you don’t have the equipment for that, hire it out too. It’ll be worth it in the end.

  4. contrary1 says:

    Not sure where you live, but I agree location might make a difference in the answer.

    I would think twice about putting lawn in at all if yard work isn’t your thing. Perhaps a few rolls of landscape cloth (or the cheaper version: newspaper) laid out and a load of bark spread in the area would be just as good.

    The newly barked area could be decorated with items that took no care…….think perhaps more like a Japanese garden (would depend on the house and the area)
    Or, a picnic table with umbrella….and some pots of shrub type plants that were plant them and forget them types.
    All sorts of plans that don’t require regular upkeep if you think about it.
    If you’re working with a realtor, ask them, they are usually a wealth of info as to what they would like to see you do to the home/yard prior to listing.

    Best of luck with the decision..and the sale!

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