Spring cleaning is underway, and clients are cleaning up more than the inside of their homes.
According to the most recent study from Houzz, creating an entertaining space and fixing problems are equally important to homeowners.
More than 4,500 Houzz users who are in the midst of, or are planning, a landscape update took the Spring Houzz Landscaping Survey (see slideshow below).
“As with all studies, our goal is to share information with our community – in this case, to provide consumer insights to landscape professionals, to help homeowners understand the value and expertise that landscape professionals provide and to empower both groups with timely information,” says Liza Hausman, VP of Community for Houzz.
The study found that 56 percent of homeowners are making updates to improve their yards for entertaining and 55 percent to solve issues, including flooding (41 percent), sun exposure (25 percent) and privacy (23 percent).
In the West, approximately 30 percent of homeowners are trying to solve the water shortage problem.
“Homeowners in this region are also least likely to plant a traditional lawn and are most likely to install artificial lawn,” Hausman says.
Clients also want space to entertain (83 percent), outdoor eating spaces (73 percent) and outdoor living rooms (53 percent). To make this happen, features like patios and decks (83 percent), barbecues (48 percent), fire pits (48 percent), sound systems (19 percent) and outdoor kitchens (14 percent) are being added. For evening entertaining, seven out of 10 homeowners are installing lights to illuminate their hardscape.
With homeowners wanting more, Hausman says landscape professionals are in demand.
“Of those homeowners on Houzz who plan to hire a landscape professional, 51 percent plan to hire a landscape contractor, while 49 percent plan to hire a landscape architect or landscape designer,” Hausman says.
The survey also found that a majority of homeowners are making eco-friendly choices for their yard, including:
- Green lighting: Of the two thirds of homeowners who are updating the lighting in their yard (65 percent), a majority is going green with LED (58 percent) and solar powered lights (56 percent). Homeowners in rural neighborhoods are most likely to choose solar powered lighting.
- Native plant choices: Overwhelmingly, homeowners are choosing plants that are native to their region (92 percent). While many are motivated by benefiting the environment (49 percent), nearly seven in 10 are looking to reduce maintenance (67 percent).
- Lawn alternatives: Traditional lawn remains popular, but is significantly less so in the West (69 percent) versus the Midwest (88 percent), East (87 percent) and South (86 percent). Alternatives to traditional lawn are appearing throughout the country, with homeowners in the South choosing mondo grass (20 percent), and those in the West saving on water bills and upkeep with artificial lawn (16 percent).
One of the more interesting statistics is the amount of homeowners who are installing edible plants in the landscaping.
“Two-thirds of homeowners are taking the local food movement to their own backyard,” Hausman says. “This trend isn’t limited to people living in suburban or rural areas as many urban homeowners are sacrificing their precious yard space to plant edibles in the ground. Of those homeowners planting edibles, 70 percent are doing so for the first time.”
This is the first year Houzz has completed this survey, with the intention of making it an ongoing annual landscape trend study.
“With this survey, we wanted to raise awareness of the landscaping profession by showing that working with a professional on updates can not only beautify a yard, but also solve real issues,” Hausman says. “We also believe that by understanding regional differences, trends in style, scope, preferences and the motivations behind landscaping projects landscape professionals can better serve their clients.”
Click through the slideshow below to view the Spring Houzz Landscaping Survey results: