No. of Recommendations: 2
Sounds like it may be time for you folks to learn some basic home maintenance to help save you some money. Start with the small things, and work you way up from there so that you can eventually cut the landscaper, or use them for the bigger things.

How often do you get the lawn mowed? Can you stretch out that interval so that you get a bit of savings, like mowing every other week instead of every week, for instance? Look at what you have them do, and see what you might be able to do yourselves, or if there are ways you can reduce the frequency or their hours to save you something without having to cut it out altogether so that you gradually make this change.

Reviewed the landscaping proposal which I have not yet returned and it is as follows:

Cut and edge lawn, clean walks $40. This is done weekly.
(other quotes were in the $60 range)

Maintain flower beds. (have no idea what this mean, have to talk w landscapers. The issue is I have no idea what kind of flowers are growing on our bed, so I have no idea how to maintain them. I just know that some are red, some are yellow, and some are white. And there are a lot of them. They wrap all around the house, the walk way, back of the house, and around the deck. They come out in the spring and die in the fall.) $40

Fertilization program: $52 + tax per application
early spring- fertilize lawn and apply preemergence for crab grass
spring - fertilize lawn and apply broadleaf weedkiller
summer -fertilize lawn and apply surface insect control
late summer- fertilize lawn and apply subsurface insect control
fall - fertilize lawn and apply broadleaf weedkiller

spring clean up - $135

aerate lawn -N/A
mulch beds - N/A
fall leaf clean up: $32/man hour, costs will vary weekly depending on the amt of leaves

trim shrubs - N/A
sprinkler system start up and fall blow out- N/A

My husband did the mulching last year and we r not doing it this year.
My coworker said you can do it every other year and it still looks good in my opition.
Spring clean up - my coworker said we should be able to handle that and we will. We just have to pick up the leaves/branches/etc that fell over the winter. Will do that this weekend.
She also advised that we let them do the fertilization program because she said the fertilizer is not cheap.
We don't have a lawn mower yet so I think we will continue to let them do that. My husband works many weekends and am not sure if he will be able to consistently get it done. If we do get the mower this summer, the contract is canceleable. If the lawn is not cut, we get fined by the city. I know from personal experience, last year I delayed signing the contract because I was obtaining quotes and after three weeks the nasty letter came in the mail giving us 48hrs to address our lawn or pay $250. My neighbor's son home from college got it cut for us in a hurry, until the landscapers started up again.

Fall leaf clean up is a tough one. This gets very expensive. Our bills over the summer ranged about $200, then in sept or oct last year when the leaves started to fall, we got a bill for $688 and then another for $550. All related to leaf clean up. I do see them working and I know its albor intensive. They spent hours on those Thursdays cleaning up the leaves, but the lawn looks great for four hours, and then it essentially looks the same pre-clean up. My concern is that without the leaves cleaned up, they can't cut the lawn, which means we need to clean up the leaves Wed evening after work, so that they can mow on Thurs AM when they arrive. But certainly doing the leaf clean up ourselves would make the biggest impact on our budget.
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