The surprising range of career opportunities in the landscape industry

(BPT) – Planning your next career move? Job seekers may think they have explored every possible option after attending job seminars or visiting career counselors, but the landscape industry is an often-overlooked field that’s full of diverse opportunities from entry-level to management positions.

According to the National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP), the landscape industry needs to fill 300,000 positions this year and now is peak hiring season. While you might have a preconceived notion of what landscape professionals do, consider that the NALP represents an industry employing nearly 1 million people in positions as diverse as landscape designers, architects, project managers, management and sales executives, arborists, agronomists, hardscape installers and more. While some careers in the field require a college degree, there are many that offer on-the-job training or apprenticeships to help job seekers launch a career. The industry also welcomes aspiring entrepreneurs and business owners that dream of owning their own company and helping others launch their careers one day.
An interest in the outdoors is certainly a plus, but a wide array of skills and professional roles are needed to design, build, and maintain healthy green spaces in communities across the country. For example, professionals looking for meaningful careers in creative design, management, finance, and technology are encouraged to explore the landscape industry.

Machinery and Technology

For those interested in computers or the latest technology, the landscape industry provides an opportunity to utilize the latest tech and equipment to streamline the work and be environmentally efficient. Landscape professionals routinely use cutting-edge tools, including electronic imaging and GPS tracking, whereas arborists rely on sonograms to assess the health of trees. Innovative technology and digital programs are used in many behind-the-scenes functions of landscape projects. Drones are employed to save time and get a project overview, and robotic mowers help crews complete projects more efficiently. Irrigation specialists use programmable systems to conserve water, and landscape designers employ sophisticated computer programs to provide clients with realistic renderings of their outdoor space. On the management side, technology is essential for project managers and estimators to coordinate important tasks and track finances, so operations run smoothly.

Environment and Outdoors

If you want to spend more time outdoors, there are a variety of positions in the field that include designing, creating, installing, and maintaining healthy, outdoor spaces for commercial and residential clients. Entry-level positions include lawn care technicians, irrigation installers, and service technicians. Each role allows you to be outside, helping the environment by caring for plants, trees, and grasses. If you don’t have a green thumb but want to be outdoors, landscape teams also need professionals to install hardscapes and operate machinery.

Communication and Management

If you have good people skills, the landscape industry offers many opportunities to interact with, assist, and manage teams. Entry-level positions can include customer service at a landscape company, nursery, or greenhouse. Crew leaders or foremen are also needed to supervise teams completing projects in the field. Managers, account executives, and business developers are also in demand to help direct projects, attract sales leads, manage purchasing decisions, and grow the business.

Science and Math

Those interested in science may consider exploring a degree in a field such as agronomy (soil science), horticulture, irrigation technology, and arboriculture. Professionals in these areas of the landscape industry spend time in a lab, as well as in the field, depending on the position. Studying how plants grow and thrive is an integral part of the landscape profession. If you’re more of a numbers person, estimators are needed to calculate material costs and markups for projects. Businesses in the landscape industry also need accountants and bookkeepers.

Creativity and Innovation

The landscape industry taps the creative minds of licensed landscape architects and designers to envision the possibilities for beautifying outdoor environments. Interiorscape professionals are responsible for bringing plants and greenery indoors, adding beauty and clean air to commercial and residential locations. Landscape architects and designers create beautiful outdoor spaces in varying environments with the clients’ vision in mind. All of these positions — and more — provide rewarding jobs with competitive compensation and opportunities for advancement, while making a difference for families, communities, and the environment.

To explore career possibilities in the landscape industry, visit LandscapeIndustryCareers.org or apply for openings in your area at Jobs.LandscapeIndustryCareers.org.

A.C.F. Home Inspections, Your Premier Orlando Home Inspection Company | Let this experienced Orlando Home Inspection Company help keep you from buying The Money Pit. We’ll alert you to any and all health or safety issues and maintenance needs of the home you’re looking to buy.

As a family-owned business, we pride ourselves on supporting homeowners and families who need an honest, competent and dependable property inspector. We understand the importance of safety. When it comes to children and family. Therefore, we give special attention to deficiencies in systems and components of the home that represent an immediate danger. And we are independent and impartial; we work for you – our client – and not for an agent or other interests.

A.C.F. Home Inspections is committed to bringing you a consistently high level of service. We are an indispensable asset to real estate agents, buyers, sellers, investors, property managers, landlords, mortgage brokers, and private and nursing care homes.  Let us be your residential and commercial advisor, and find peace of mind that you are getting a professional’s opinion.

A.C.F. Home Inspections will be your home buying or selling advocate!  We’re highly experienced and extremely thorough. If you’re looking to buy or sell in the Orlando area, we can help!

Call A.C.F. Home Inspections Today (407) 218-6522 or Click To Schedule Online 24/7 Right From Our Website.

A.C.F. Home Inspections has been providing Orlando Home Inspections4 Point InspectionsWind Mitigation, Monthly home tips news, Water Quality TestingRadon TestingLead Paint Testing, and Mold Inspection

Bringing the indoors out: 2020 outdoor living trends

(BPT) – 2020 outdoor living trends are all about enjoying your backyard alfresco — but with the comfort and ease, you expect from your indoor spaces. Today’s outdoor spaces are transforming into an extension of the home. The current outdoor design also takes into account the look and feel of your entire home, including the interior and exterior, building materials, and surroundings.

Connecting with nature: Biophilic design

Biophilic design is achieved when natural elements are incorporated into space, helping people feel connected to the natural environment. It creates a calm, tranquil space and reduces stress. Biophilia makes sense for indoor urban environments needing to bring the outdoors in, but how does it work when you’re already outside?

Biophilic design for outdoor spaces means integrating natural elements with constructed elements to create a harmonious space. A plant wall or raised garden bed can integrate greenery and pops of color with the built elements of your outdoor space. It also means using natural materials, like wood and stone, to complement the surrounding environment.

Create a greener, more sustainable spaces to celebrate the environment, which can help encourage pollinators, grow healthy food, and forge a cohesive outdoor space. You can also use materials such as Belgard’s permeable pavers, which allow water to drain through the surface, replenishing the soil and aquifers beneath your path, walkway, or driveway.

More than just a grill

Today’s homeowners want much more than a grill in the backyard. With aspirations to cook and entertain guests outdoors with everything the best outdoor kitchen can offer, the possibilities are endless — from grills to cooktops and ovens or even a wine cooler and an outdoor bar.

Homeowners also have many options when it comes to the design and price point of their outdoor kitchen. Some may lean toward a grill island, adding prep and storage space to their grilling station, while others might create a full-on outdoor kitchen with a grill, smoker, refrigerator, sink, seating area, and more.

Either way, homeowners can get a feel for exactly what their space will look like before breaking ground through Belgard’s design resources. The Belgard Design Studio takes a simple sketch, some dimensions, and a couple of photos and turns it, using design software, into 3D animations and virtual reality experiences to give homeowners a sense of the finished product in their backyard.

Sleek, modern design

While it may seem contrary to the more organic approach of biophilic design, the contemporary trend toward sleek, modular furniture can enhance your outdoor space.

Modular, sectional pieces with clean lines and streamlined design can be arranged and re-arranged to accommodate any natural elements you want to incorporate in your space or to handle different numbers of guests when entertaining.

The minimalist approach to furnishings also allows the natural elements around you to take center stage.

Multifunctional spaces

Whether your home is in an urban area with limited green space, or you want to optimize your outdoor living, get creative:

  • Add vertical planters
  • Hang hammocks for lounging
  • Create built-in seating
  • Build raised garden beds

Here’s where some of that modular seating can come in handy, too. Some urban homes make good use of their front porches and yards, instead, which invites more neighborhood engagement and a feeling of community.

Entertaining both night and day

Regardless of the time of day — or year — you and your family can relax comfortably in your outdoor sanctuary, thanks to modern technology and the latest outdoor installations:

  • LED lighting is installed in a variety of ways. You can install strips of light and/or spotlights, even using multiple colors, to add flair at night.
  • In the harsh sunlight, large umbrellas and movable shade walls or screens can keep your space cool and more comfortable.
  • For cooler climates, an outdoor fireplace provides heat and light for cozy evenings in the yard.

Whether you have a straightforward vision for a patio or dream of elaborate outdoor living spaces, these ideas can help you create your oasis. For more information on how you can upgrade your outdoor space, visit Belgard.com.

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A.C.F. Home Inspections, Your Premier Orlando Home Inspection Company | Let this experienced Orlando Home Inspection Company help keep you from buying The Money Pit. We’ll alert you to any and all health or safety issues and maintenance needs of the home you’re looking to buy.

As a family-owned business, we pride ourselves on supporting homeowners and families who need an honest, competent and dependable property inspector. We understand the importance of safety. When it comes to children and family. Therefore, we give special attention to deficiencies in systems and components of the home that represent an immediate danger. And we are independent and impartial; we work for you – our client – and not for an agent or other interests.

A.C.F. Home Inspections is committed to bringing you a consistently high level of service. We are an indispensable asset to real estate agents, buyers, sellers, investors, property managers, landlords, mortgage brokers, and private and nursing care homes.  Let us be your residential and commercial advisor, and find peace of mind that you are getting a professional’s opinion.

A.C.F. Home Inspections will be your home buying or selling advocate!  We’re highly experienced and extremely thorough. If you’re looking to buy or sell in the Orlando area, we can help!

Call A.C.F. Home Inspections Today (407) 218-6522 or Click To Schedule Online 24/7 Right From Our Website.

A.C.F. Home Inspections has been providing Orlando Home Inspections4 Point InspectionsWind Mitigation, Monthly home tips news, Water Quality TestingRadon TestingLead Paint Testing, and Mold Inspection

How To Protect Your Most Valuable Asset

How to pick the right homeowner’s insurance

(BPT) – If you’re like many Americans, your home may be your most valuable asset. That’s why it’s so important to protect it with homeowners’ insurance. Plus, it’s probably a requirement of your mortgage. Setting up your coverage the right way starts with understanding the major parts of a homeowner’s policy.

Consider the following information and tips from the USAA Home Learning Center:

Dwelling protection

This protection covers the cost of repairing or rebuilding your home if it’s damaged or destroyed. When you select the amount, keep in mind the cost to rebuild your home is different from its market value.

It’s important to get the dwelling coverage right and to monitor it overtime to make sure it keeps up with construction costs to rebuild. Under most homeowner’s policies, if you file a claim and have underinsured your home, your payout may be reduced.

Some insurers will help you estimate the rebuilding cost. They take into account the features, materials, and finishes that make your home unique.

Personal property protection

This protection covers your furniture, clothing, and pretty much everything else inside your home. Most policies set the amount of personal property protection as a percentage of the dwelling coverage.

It may not be enough, though. Homeowner’s plans set limits on certain high-value items. If you own expensive jewelry, art, guns, stamps, furs, cameras, computers, silver, or collectibles, you’ll want to consider buying valuable personal property insurance. This is sometimes called a “personal articles floater.”

When you set up your homeowner’s policy, you may have to make an important choice about how to reimburse losses. There are two approaches:

  • Replacement cost. This coverage is the amount needed to replace the property with a comparable, new item.
  • Actual cash value. This coverage considers depreciation in the value of your property. If your 10-year-old couch is destroyed, you will receive what it was worth at the time of loss, not the money you’d need to buy a new one.

To make your recovery from a loss as smooth as possible, replacement cost coverage is recommended.

Liability coverage

This is one of the most important and least appreciated forms of protection offered through homeowner’s coverage. It protects you if you’re found to be at fault for someone’s injury or property damage. It even covers you for non-automobile incidents away from your home. Generally, it also covers your legal costs associated with such claims against you.

As a rule, your liability coverage should at least be equal to the total value of your assets for both your homeowners and auto insurance. If your assets are higher than the maximum coverage allowed under the policy, consider purchasing umbrella insurance to cover the difference. This is important to protect the savings and other assets you’ve worked hard to acquire.

Deductibles

As with other types of insurance, a deductible is the part of a loss that you’re responsible for covering out of your own pocket. The higher your deductible, the lower your monthly premium.

Choosing a higher deductible can save you money with a lower monthly premium but increases the risk you take. Consider the amount of cash you typically have on hand in your emergency fund or checking and savings accounts. Make sure you can cover the deductible amount comfortably.

What may not be covered

Your policy’s basic coverage won’t cover some special risks.

  • Floods: While a standard policy covers most weather-related events, floods aren’t one of them. Flood insurance is inexpensive, and the federal government offers it through insurers. While it’s mandatory when you have a mortgage and live in a flood zone, you should give it strong consideration no matter where you live. Whether it’s a flash flood or a few inches of excess water, flooding can cause massive damage to your dwelling and its contents.
  • Earthquakes: You can add coverage for earth movements to your policy with an extra premium. If you live in an area prone to earthquakes, consider reinforcing your home protection with this coverage.
  • Home businesses: Homeowner’s plans provide limited coverage for business equipment. If you run your business from home or have expensive office equipment, you may need to consider additional coverage. Your homeowner’s policy may not cover injuries to someone if they’re related to your business.

For additional information on protecting your home, visit USAA.com/Homeowners.

A.C.F. Home Inspections, Your Premier Orlando Home Inspection Company | Let this experienced Orlando Home Inspection Company help keep you from buying The Money Pit. We’ll alert you to any and all health or safety issues and maintenance needs of the home you’re looking to buy.

As a family-owned business, we pride ourselves on supporting homeowners and families who need an honest, competent and dependable property inspector. We understand the importance of safety. When it comes to children and family. Therefore, we give special attention to deficiencies in systems and components of the home that represent an immediate danger. And we are independent and impartial; we work for you – our client – and not for an agent or other interests.

A.C.F. Home Inspections is committed to bringing you a consistently high level of service. We are an indispensable asset to real estate agents, buyers, sellers, investors, property managers, landlords, mortgage brokers, and private and nursing care homes.  Let us be your residential and commercial advisor, and find peace of mind that you are getting a professional’s opinion.

A.C.F. Home Inspections will be your home buying or selling advocate!  We’re highly experienced and extremely thorough. If you’re looking to buy or sell in the Orlando area, we can help!

Call A.C.F. Home Inspections Today (407) 218-6522 or Click To Schedule Online 24/7 Right From Our Website.

A.C.F. Home Inspections has been providing Orlando Home Inspections4 Point InspectionsWind Mitigation, Monthly home tips news, Water Quality TestingRadon TestingLead Paint Testing, and Mold Inspection.