By Valerie Smith
Spring and fall are perfect times for introducing sod to your yard for the first time or replacing old grass with an upgraded, premium variety. Choosing a professional lawn installation company can be tricky though. And not all installers deliver a quality end result. This article was written based on an interview with Josh at J.S.J. Unlimited, LLC.’s sod and landscaping company located in Central Florida.
1. A Good Company Should Have a Quality Process.
A solid sod installation company should have a thorough process in place. In order to obtain the best possible outcome, make sure it intends to prepare the ground. Here are the steps it needs to take before installing the sod.
- It may be have to use a herbicide to rid the area of weeds and other unwanted growth one last time;
- It will need to remove the old sod—not just mow or scalp it;
- It must haul all debris away;
- It may have to regrade the area.
Avoid a company that plans to simply mow or scalp existing grass before laying new sod on top of it as a one-size-fits-all process.
2. Agree on Terms at the Front End of the Job.
Like any other professional service, both parties should lay out and agree upon terms before doing any work. This means that the company should come to your home, measure your lawn and determine the process that the job will require. You can measure your lawn yourself to have an idea of the amount of sod you may need by using the Sod Solutions area calculator tool.
Remember that the cost may differ greatly depending on factors like process and preparation work. Consider it a red flag if an installation company asks for a large percentage up front. A reputable company should require little to nothing on the front end.
Another thing to remember is that installation companies are often NOT maintenance companies. Don’t expect ongoing service. Instead, plan to either handle maintenance yourself or hire another company to meet those needs.
Be sure to check out Sod Solution’s abundance of maintenance tips on the Maintenance page. You can find seasonal advice, maintenance fundamentals and other helpful information sorted by your specific variety of grass.
3. Low Prices Often Means Low Quality.
The phrase “You get what you pay for” is especially true when it comes to sod installation. As previously mentioned, a lot more goes into an installation job than just laying grass. If you come across a company that quotes a rock-bottom price compared to other installers in the area, beware. There is likely a reason. It’s better to pay more and get the job done the right way the first time than to have to go back and correct a messy job.
4. Look for a Licensed Company That Carries Insurance.
Lastly, save yourself a potential legal headache by choosing a licensed company that carries both general and workers compensation insurance. If something goes awry, these credentials ensure that you are protected.
Be sure to read the How to Properly Install Sod page. That will give you an idea of all the work a sod installation company does. If you make the decision to lay the sod yourself, this blog covers all the information. That means starting at selecting the right kind of grass, to applying fertilizer to newly laid sod. To read about how to get your newly sodded lawn off to a great start, click here.
Want to learn more about achieving a great lawn? Check out more Sod University tips here.
This article was written by Sod Solutions Content Strategist, Valerie Smith, and is presented here as a public service. Photos also supplied by Sod Solutions. Sod Solutions has helped successfully develop and release to the market over 20 different turfgrass varieties over the past 27 years. The company is based in the Charleston, South Carolina area.