I take great pride in all the services I provide to my customers so it is with absolute pleasure, that I offer a bespoke design service to you, my clients, regular and new alike. Whether you simply want a small secluded, cosy retreat to get away from the hustle and bustle of it all or whether you have something more grand and ostentatious in mind, I’m more than happy to arrange a meeting with you to discuss your Ideas.
I provide a straightforward design service with no beating around the bush (no pun intended) and at every stage of the design process you will be kept well informed of what to expect from the design process. I believe in transparency at all times.
This way you as a client can feel confident that I will strive to transform your gardening dreams into reality and commit to providing you with the best service I can possibly offer!
The Design Process
Landscape Garden Design And Consultancy
Brief meeting to discuss the initial design brief with client.
Measurements, notes and photos will be taken at this stage to support the design proposal criteria – generally lasts up to but no longer than 1 hour.
After Initial client consultation, I will put together an approximate figure for expected costings – generally and loosely based around projects of similar size and scope using the same or similar types of materials. Please be aware that at this stage this is definitely just a rough guestimate (ball park figure) of the potential costs involved and should in no way be considered a final quotation. What to expect: I usually ask my client to give a very rough approximation of budget to help me streamline the design process and get a more accurate estimate for them, otherwise its a shot in the dark and of no use to anyone if I’m just pulling figures out of thin air.
I try to give a response within 2 weeks of initial consultation but please be aware that this is not always possible between April and October at the height of the season and slight delays can be expected but generally no longer than 3-4 weeks for initial estimate.
Consecutive Design Consultation Meetings (onsite)
An initial call out fee of £35 is applicable, followed by an hourly fee of £25 per/hr for any consecutive hours
Consecutive Design Consultation Meetings (remote i.o.w. Zoom or Whatsapp)
Are charged at £20 per hour for the first hour followed by £15 for any consecutive hours
Initial Design Proposal £25 per/hr
Price quoted is the hourly rate for design and consultation. This is chargeable upon client consent to allow Michael Lowe Landscapes to undertake the contract as Design Consultant and/or Landscaping Contractor to the client.
I will provide the necessary documentation for client consent once my client has agreed both verbally and/or in writing via either telephone and/or email or letter that they are in agreement as to the estimated (ball park figure) relevant to their specific design brief.
Once my client has signed the documentation giving their consent for Michael Lowe Landscapes to provide design and consultancy services to the client the client has entered into a legal contract which is legally binding between Michael Lowe Landscapes, possible third party contractors if required and the client and all parties appearing in and having signed and legally entered into the contract, shall remain committed for the duration of the contract until stated expiry date of said contract.
This does not mean that these are your only choices.
Of course if you prefer and it is preferable for myself to deal directly with contractors rather than subcontracting then we can arrange for the process to unfold as such and this can be written into the contract.
Design Proposal Development Fees and Description £25 per/hr
Price quoted is the hourly rate for design and consultation and all hours spent on sometimes necessary R&D are also logged accordingly and chargeable. Sometimes it is likely that a client may change their mind about a certain design feature or may possibly be indecisive about particular material/s or plant/s being used in the design. These changes in decisions and thus changes to the design proposal are deemed chargeable as they require time and effort on my part to implement the changes made both on paper and eventually onsite. Thus the term Development fees
as the design process proceeds and develops.
Consecutive site visitations prior to job start
All consecutive site visitations prior to work being implemented will incur a £35 call out fee for the first hour followed by an hourly rate of £25 per/hr for consecutive hours
All such details will be disclosed at all times to the client before invoicing.
Deposits to be Paid
Before any site work begins a 30% deposit is required to be paid in full, no less than 7 days before the project start date to secure the purchase of some of, if not all of the materials required to complete the project to a satisfactory standard.
Further payments from the client will be required to further fund the project implementation at 30%, 60%, 90% and 100% completion stages of the project.
These stages will be discussed and outlined in the final design proposal.
If required, a fixed rate for design and consultation fees can be negotiated upon request.
Final Design Proposal Fees and Description £25 per/hr
Price quoted is the hourly rate for design and consultation. As previously mentioned a certain amount of discrepancy should be allowed for decision making and sometimes one client may be further along in the design process than another client. It is advised to take this into consideration when making your initial enquiry as the level of your own design R&D will determine the design and consultancy fees you are likely to pay.
I.O.W. it is possible that the more leg work you do in the early stages of the design process the more likely you will be better prepared for the wonderful journey you are embarking upon in the realisation of your vision for your garden and the greater your understanding will be of the entire design process which often, but not always will fill in the blanks when it comes to the question of associated costs and the often misjudged perception of how time consuming and potentially costly the design process can be from start to finish. Often the associated costs and the time taken during the design process are highly underestimated.
The Final Design Proposal Completion And Submission
Once the Final Design Proposal has been submitted and viewed and discussed and all parties have reached a consensus on the project design and implementation, the contract is signed and binding between all parties and the project start date is entered into my calendar and once the 30% deposit has cleared into my account, work onsite can begin.
Delivery of materials for the project is generally before or on the project start date.
Again all of these finer details such as project management and logistics can be discussed and agreed upon either verbally and/or via email before the project starts and then its merely a matter of the client sitting back and relaxing while we get on with the work of bringing your dreams to fruition.
Transparency at all times between myself and my client is of paramount importance and I appreciate frankness and honesty in any situation. Nothing ventured nothing gained! So I always encourage my clients to make any enquiries they may have before the final proposal agreement is signed
Once a garden design has been implemented with great love and enormous amounts of care it may often require further maintenance to ensure optimum plant health or to keep certain structural or focal plants/shrubs looking their best in the years of enjoyment ahead!
Sometimes certain design features (hard landscaping, sculptures, lighting, structures) might need servicing or general maintenance in order for them to continue functioning and performing to the best of their ability. It is with this in mind that I offer you the possibility of bespoke maintenance schedules in order to maintain and protect your investment in your garden.
This can be discussed once implementation of a Garden Design is complete. Don’t worry if you forget about this service. I can always send out a friendly reminder via email or post if you require a maintenance schedule. This type of service can be worked into the design brief as well,something as simple as a “ticky box” stating whether you are interested with a Y/N answer.
I hope this information is more than helpful, but if you would like to find out more about Michael Lowe Garden Designs or you would like to arrange an informal meeting to discuss your garden ideas and plans, please call:
07975 661 910
or otherwise contact me at:
and place “GARDEN DESIGN QUERY” in the subject line.
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I hope to hear from you soon and look forward to being of service to you!