Garden design and consultancy fees - How much will it cost, and when do I pay?

How much will it cost, and when do I pay?

"How much will it cost?" is a question I am often asked in the first phone call. Quite reasonably, you will want to know what sort of expenditure might be involved in employing a garden designer, but this depends on what you want me to do, and I cannot give you a quotation over the telephone: I will need to visit the garden and discuss your needs before I can provide a quotation.

Initial Consultation

My fees for an initial consultation, which usually amount to about 2 hours spent with you, are 150*. This sum includes my travel expenses within 50 km of my working base in France, or within the M25 in the UK. After this meeting you will receive my written proposals for your garden.

The standing charge for this initial consultation is payable at the end of the visit.

Design Work

My aim is to be open about costs. If you commission a design I base my charges for producing a detailed design drawing (Outline Plan) on 60 an hour (plus VAT). Every project is different so it is difficult to be precise. As an example, a design drawing for a garden of 10 x 20 metres could be in the region of 500-600. A typical suburban back garden can take about 12-14 hours to get to a finished plan - so that's in the region of 725 to 850 (plus VAT). Obviously, the larger the garden, and the more complicated the site (perhaps one with many changes of level) the longer it will take to arrive at the final plan, but you will always receive a written estimate to guide you. These prices are for the drawing alone.

50% of the design fee is payable at the time of commission, with the balance due on immediate receipt of the Outline Plan.

Planting Plan

Almost all clients require a detailed Planting Plan showing the exact numbers and location of all plants, as well as their final spread. This Planting Plan will be quoted for separately as its cost is dependent on the planting area, style and impact required. Along with this you will also receive a Planting Schedule listing all plants by type, variety and pot size so that you have the correct information for nurseries and contractors.

Fees are payable on immediate receipt of the Planting Plan and Plant Schedule.

Contract Management

Visits for contract management are paid for as they occur, unless decided otherwise. Unlike some designers, I never charge a fixed percentage of the contractor's fee for this service. For most projects I find it fairer to simply charge my standard hourly rate of 60 so that you pay only for the actual time I work. On larger projects I charge 10% of the first 10,000 of the cost of the work, and 8% beyond this point.

Sundry Costs

Printing of plans and other documents, and the processing of reference photographs, are charged at cost plus a small handling charge.

The cost of the garden itself will vary depending on size, style, the proportion of hard landscaping to soft landscaping, and the complexity of the site, but a sum equivalent to 4%-10% of the value of the property would be appropriate for a complete re-design. One way of looking at the costs of creating a garden is to view it as an asset, much like as adding an extension to the house, or perhaps a new kitchen.

* All fees quoted on this website are exclusive of VAT, and can be converted into Euros at the current exchange rate.

Every project start off with an initial consultation followed by a design quote
The cost of the garden itself will vary depending on size, style, the proportion of hard 
			landscaping to soft landscaping, and the complexity of the site.