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Find the Best Landscape Contractors to Design & Build a Backyard in Los Angeles

There are multiple ways to build and design a new backyard in Southern California, some will produce disastrous results others are rather expensive. Explore your options and find out how to avoid overpaying sketchy landscaping contractors before it's too late.

How to Select the Best Landscaping Contractor to Design and Build a Backyard in Southern California

How to Select a Landscaper for Your Outdoor Space

Whether your backyard renovation will feature a simple and basic design or something more elaborate, finding the right local landscaping contractor in Los Angeles can be a chore. Below we'll discuss a few different ways to find a landscaper during the design and renovation process of your outdoor living space.  

The Most Common Way to Design and Build a Backyard

During the planning process of backyard renovation In Los Angeles, many homeowners will simply draft the backyard experience themselves by sketching the design on a piece of paper or by using a backyard design app. Often they'll find inspiration for their outdoor space through searching for backyard design ideas online. Once they have a general idea of the design layout, hardscape elements, and focal point, they'll begin reaching out to specialized contractors to work on specific parts such as concrete workers, artificial turf installers, plumbers, etc. Often, an outdoor oasis turns out to be a bit different than expected.

Design and Plan Backyard Remodel


The biggest advantage to building a backyard in SoCal by yourself is the amount of savings you'll have when not outsourcing to a landscape design agency. By taking the time to configure your own space and do your own planning, you can save thousands of dollars and have a personal landscape design that no one else has by simply browsing backyard landscaping ideas. You'll also have the freedom to screen your own landscaping contractor for your landscaping project rather than relying on your designer to outsource the work. 


While you can save money by designing a backyard makeover on your own, it is very easy to make mistakes along the way if you're not an expert in this craft. We often find that homeowners that handle the logistics of a major landscaping project or backyard renovation run into defects along the way that can end up doubling the cost of the backyard construction. There are many factors that must be addressed before the new design features can be installed such as utilities, lighting, and providing a water source to vegetation. 

Reasons for failure and success

We see the most success when landscape design is simple and straightforward, completed by a single contractor, and supervised 24/7 by an experienced homeowner. Issues with landscape design appear when a homeowner integrates multiple elements. For example, when a backyard remodeling includes an outdoor fireplace, retaining walls, built-in seating areas, an outdoor kitchen, pavers, or natural stone, then things could get really messy.

Usually, the fess begins with plumbing. When plumbers install irrigation systems, gas lines, and electrical conduits, they rarely compact the soil and backfill it only to get the check and run away. Then concrete or paver contractor installs a hardscape over a failed base. It does not stop here. When you get a great deal on hardscaping, a landscaping company is trying to save costs with edging. As a result, transitioning a landscaped patio into an artificial lawn and achieving clean lines is unrealistic. Often, homeowners end up with backyard landscaping where drains do not work properly, vegetable gardens missing irrigation systems, lighting wires sitting on the surface, and broken with shovels. And after a few heavy showers of rain, the surface settles along the trenches. This gets far from the original backyard idea. Repairing such a project is challenging and expensive.


The Most Time-Consuming Way to Build a Backyard 

When considering how to select the best landscaper for backyard renovation, many homeowners will begin by working with a landscape designer. After the initial consultation, the backyard designer will sketch a few backyard landscape ideas and find the desired layout and then recommend a landscaping company and contractors to their client. 

landscaping contractor los angeles project


Working with an actual landscape designer during outdoor makeovers will help ensure that not only does the new backyard design make sense for your space, but that the renovations are practical and offer resell value on the property. Google helps make finding the best landscape designer a breeze, a quick search for landscape designers near me will offer a plethora of results for these services. Landscape designers are often experienced in creating outdoor living spaces and could enrich your backyard with such elements as build it fire pit, a vegetable garden, potted plants, sustainable living concepts, a comfortable sitting area, a water feature, and recommend low maintenance materials.


Typically working with an outdoor landscape designer, you're just adding a middleman that comes with a price. Often, the designs on paper are not very practical and must be changed during the backyard build stage. While designers help connect you with specialized contractors, they're still outsourcing the actual renovation work the same way you would on your own. Having this extra point of contact while remodeling a backyard space can lead to confused logistics, delays, and continuous adjustments. Landscape contractors often simplify backyard landscaping ideas developed even by professional landscape architects.

Reasons for failure and success

Selecting a landscape architect does really make it or break it. Many clients now rely on online design tools such as Yardzen. Those projects are the most complicated. We see clients asking to build backyards that are completely unfit for their lifestyle. For example, a low-maintenance landscaping idea could include flower beds, native plants, and ground cover that is not applicable. Or, we often see requests to build concrete slabs in the areas where childer are supposed to play safely. In small backyards, it is often to find a firepit area and seating area with sharp corners, or worse, the stone steps that create a trip hazard. We have seen it all, from a dangerous desert garden to a vertical space and hanging baskets over the narrow pathway. The national association of landscaping contractors takes safety very seriously. Unfortunately, many designers deliver backyard landscaping ideas that are unfit, dangerous and hard to live with. Yet, many of those featured backyard ideas look great on pictures.

The Simplest and Priciest Way to Update Your Backyard Design

The simplest backyard design process is to outsource the entire project to an outdoor design and development company that provides it all. They'll offer several backyard design mockups that meet the homeowner's requests and lead the entire execution from start to finish. But, you have to talk about money first and that is where your bargaining power disappears.

desing and build a backyard in Los Angeles


Opting to use a design agency will remove a lot of stress from you as a homeowner. They're experts in their trade and have connections already in place to get it done right. You won't have to worry about how to select a landscaper because they'll handle the entire process. Another added bonus is that they'll be more educated on city safety requirements to ensure the new design will pass any required inspections. Often, such companies know what they are doing and pitch you proven backyard ideas.  


While completing a backyard makeover with a development agency is the quickest and requires little effort on your end, it's by far the most expensive way to update an outdoor space. If you're looking for an affordable backyard remodel, working with an agency is not the recommended method for finding backyard landscapers nearby. 

Another con about working with an umbrella company is that you have to get ready to deal with subcontractors. Yes, it is rare to find a company that could complete your backyard landscape in-house. You will not be able to choose subs for your backyard landscaping. Sometimes more complex builds, such as an outdoor kitchen could be delivered with shortcomings.

Reasons for failure and success

We believe that timing is the most critical factor in successful backyard design and build projects with this type of landscaping contractor. During the low season, you get the best crews and the best project managers. landscape designers have more time to focus on your project. Professional crews are available and could fit your desired budget. Things go wrong when such companies face tripled amounts of requests during the summertime and have to outsource their creative landscaping jobs to less experienced landscaping contractors that you do not have control over. Simply said, you might be overpaying during the summertime. So thin ahead.

The Most Cost-Efficient Way to Design and Build a Backyard in Southern California

There are so many backyard landscape ideas out there, but most of them have the same common features. We decided to specialize in simple and practical backyards that provide the most added value to the property and match the lifestyle of the homeowner. As a result, homeowners can quickly design their yards, establish budgeting priorities and build the backyard of their dream for much less.

Need a contractor for landscaping projects that offers the most cost-efficient backyard design renovation? Contact InstallArtificial. With our Backyard Makeover Cost Calculator, you can select your desired features and receive the estimated price immediately to plan your budget. This backyard renovation calculator works accurately for those looking for a simple design. 

design and price backyard renovation online

Once you've received an idea of the cost of designing and building your backyard, you can request a custom quote that's catered to your specific project. We'll review your requests and create an in-depth proposal laying out pricing for different materials, all for free! 

At InstallArtificial, we don't only specialize in artificial grass. We're here for all your backyard renovation needs! From paver patios and other hardscape, to artificial grass and planters - we've got you covered. You're able to outsource the entire scope to one responsible contractor with expertise who executes similar backyard projects on a consistent basis. 

How to Select a Landscaping Contractor That Meets Your Budget and Expectations?

In conclusion, a comprehensive renovation of your outdoor space can be costly regardless of how you select your contractors. Designing it yourself is the most economical, but it will also require the most work on your end and defects are very likely. Outsourcing the entire project to a design firm will cost you an arm and a leg and takes creative freedom away.

You receive competitive pricing AND premium service with InstallArtificial. By using our backyard design tool you can create your backyard and see ballpark pricing in real time to allocate your budget in the best way. When trusting InstallArtificial with the entire scope of your project, you'll save both time and money by not managing several contractors. Ready to get started? Request an estimate in 6 clicks below.

backyard renovation design and quote

Find The Truth About Backyard Landscaping Prices in Los Angeles

How much does it cost to landscape a 1000 sq.ft. backyard?

Plan to spend $10,000 to build a livable space of 1000 square feet on a budget. A $15,000 budget would include a hard surface or a simple gazebo. For $20,000 you can build a backyard that would include a fire pit, a deck, and a nice-looking lawn with simple plants on the perimeter.

Simple Artificial Grass Installation Cost

Should I tell a landscape company my budget upfront?

Well, this gets tricky. However, most landscape designers will not be able to work on your project without having a good idea of the amount of money you are planning to spend. Today, it is easy to get an idea of how much the backyard landscaping idea will cost you. Instead of asking you about the depth of your pocket, a professional landscape company shall provide you with options to roughly estimate the cost of your backyard renovation project.

How much should I spend landscaping my backyard?

Spend as much as you like! Establish priorities, and plan your future backyard improvement. Do not invest in unnecessary features right away. Backyard renovation could be a lasting process that brings joy and happiness.

What is the cheapest way to landscape a backyard? 

The most cost-efficient way to landscape a backyard is to stick to a limited number of materials used for surfaces. For example, backyard remodels with concrete and artificial grass will cost less than natural stone, pavers, ornamental grasses, rare plant material, and complex water features. Use our Backyard Remodel Cost Calculator to design your space and allocate your budget. Then request a custom backyard renovation quote to receive catered pricing for your specific project! 

Artificial grass installation is one of the most common ways to build a low-cost and low-maintenance backyard that homeowners enjoy year-round. Cap sprinklers, switch to native plants, and convert the irrigation system to drip to cut the water bill by 90%.

What to look for when hiring a landscape contractor?

The first thing you should look for when hiring a backyard landscape contractor is confirmation that they're fully licensed, insured, and bonded. This will protect your home! You'll also want to reference online reviews and feedback, and ask to see a completed projects similar to yours. Take a look at the pictures that the landscape company features on the website. See if there is a fit. You can check out our projects at the backyard design and renovation gallery now! 

Are backyard renovations worth it? 

Backyard renovations are 100% worth it. A house without a backyard is just an overpriced condo. You'll get far more use out of a renovated backyard and it will be an extension of your home. Remodeling a backyard also raises property value and an updated space will be attractive when it comes time to resell. 

Artificial Grass and Paver Patio Cost

How much does it cost to hire a residential landscape design company?

On average it costs about $2000-6000 to hire a professional landscape designer. However, many landscaping companies could work on your designs at the fraction of the cost when you hire them to build your backyard.

Shall I use landscape design apps to design and build my backyard?

Using design apps is a great starting point in applying design ideas to your own home. You can get a clear picture of the desired outcome with your yard in it. However note, that many designs get simplified with fewer trees, plants, elements, and features. Often, architectural plans provided by design app companies result in stretched budgets and unrealistic expectations.

What a good landscaping company profile shall look like?

The best landscaping contractor for your design and build backyard renovation project shall be licensed, well established, and maintain a verifiable path of completed projects. Take time to do the due diligence and the background check. Meet with people. Ask specific questions and plan ahead to get it done right.

backyard renovation design and quote