Landscaping Contract Template (+PDF Download)

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PublishedJanuary 3, 2023


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It’d be nice if you could close all your deals with a handshake without the hassle of legal documents. But avoiding landscaping services contracts leaves a company vulnerable to unhappy customers and lawsuits. 

A customized template is a critical foundation your landscaping company needs for a predictable, reliable workflow. 

Contracts prevent miscommunication and set clear expectations. They also protect the landscaper and the client in rare circumstances when something goes wrong on a job. 

What is a landscaping contract?

Landscaping contracts may be called proposals or service agreements, but regardless of the name, they contain the same basic information and provide the same value for landscape contractors. A contract describes the work to be done by a landscaping service provider and the payment amount and schedule to be provided by the customer. 

Benefits of using landscaping agreements

Most of your customers probably aren’t litigious, but a comprehensive landscape agreement can save you time and stress in the worst-case scenarios. Plus, you get specifics for every new bid you win by putting everything in writing. Benefits of using a landscaping contract include:

  • Providing clarity for the field crew, operations, and customer into the scope of work to be completed

  • Specifies start and end dates for easy scheduling

  • Sets a contract duration, incorporating price negotiations into your contract renewal process

  • Outlines payment schedules so landscapers can define their cash flow

  • Builds brand loyalty by backing services and work with a guarantee, so customers know they’ll get work that they love

  • Sets terms and conditions for any customer-initiated change orders

There’s enough uncertainty in the landscape industry without creating it in your workflow. Using contracts provides predictability in scheduling, payment, and processes.

How to create a contract for landscaping

Until you have a law firm to draft your contracts, downloading a free template customized to the green industry is the fastest, easiest way to get started protecting your business with enforceable legal documents.

Start with a free landscape contract template download

This free Landscape Management Agreement template is a fillable form that makes it easy to start using contracts in your business. 

As you become more familiar with what should go in a contract, you can model your own branded templates off ours to customize them to:

→ Your niche 

→ Your workflow

Keep revising your templates as your business grows and your needs change.

What should a landscape management agreement include?

Customizing a contract allows you to address the unique aspects of your organization. As you draft your templates, work from your existing paperwork to ensure you include specific information, such as:

Contact information: Name, phone numbers, and addresses for:

  • Landscaping contractor

  • Client

  • The property where the work will be performed

Payment terms: Not every client will have the same payment structure. When the contract describes payment expectations, it helps you predict your monthly cash flow when used alongside accounting software for your landscaping business. Aspire enables users to designate four different contract types in the CRM:

  • Fixed price on completion for simple installation and seasonal clean-up jobs

  • Fixed price on payment schedule for maintenance contracts 

  • Fixed price open billing for those projects with frequent change orders and invoice adjustments

  • Time and materials on completion for jobs that are difficult to estimate with accuracy

Detailed description of services: Putting it in writing will avoid stressful calls between customers, field crews, and operations trying to align on the work to be done on a property. In the contract, outline your standard services and what they include, such as:

  • Spring and fall cleanup services

  • Pruning and mowing

  • Fertilization and turf maintenance

  • Mulch installation

Service schedule: Describe when work will be completed or the frequency of visits to the property. Don’t be vague in this section. Include contingencies for inclement weather or unexpected issues. Maintenance and lawn care contracts should include a renewal date when you’ll update your rates, usually after a year.

  • Off-limits areas: One common miscommunication occurs when properties have areas not to be included with service. By including this in your contract, you ensure everyone’s on the same page with the scope of the work.

  • Insurance information: Include language describing the coverage you carry for your employees, equipment, and customers in case field crews accidentally damage the property.

  • Liability insurance and waiver: A clause releasing property owners from liability if employees are injured on the property while at work, and proof of insurance protecting your team.

  • Subcontractor clause: If you work with subcontractors, it’s important to include that in your contracts.

  • Severability: Sometimes contracts end prematurely. Including provisions in your agreement will prevent customers from simply “firing” your company unexpectedly. Consider terms such as:

  • Either party must give a 30-day written notice of contract termination

  • Customers can terminate if there’s a material breach of the services contract or if results don’t meet quality standards.

  • Landscapers can terminate the contract if customers don’t deliver payment within a set number of days of the service completion date.

  • Dispute resolution suggestions: Customers churn when they feel they can’t resolve their issues with a service provider. Outlining a process for resolving challenges can improve brand loyalty and bolster your reputation for warranty-backed landscaping work in a competitive market.

  • Guidelines for change orders: With the unpredictability of the green industry, requested changes to the scope of work on a job are commonplace. You can use your contract to describe how current customers can request additional services and how the agreement will be amended.

  • Details and clauses: The more years you’re in business and the more verticals you enter, you’ll encounter some of the same issues over and over. Your contract should be an evolving document that you revise to serve your organization better.

While every landscaper will have some of the same basic information in their landscape management agreement, you’ll customize the details to your specific needs. 

→ Include a contract deadline with every proposal you send to prospective clients.

In an industry with fast-changing costs and supply chain issues, including a deadline to sign the contract ensures you won’t get stuck with a job that could end up costing you money if supply and material prices rise.

Tips for contract creation

There’s no better teacher than experience, but before you dive into writing your own contract, download our Landscape Management Agreement to see the structure and essential contents to include.

Then, follow these tips for contract creation for your landscaping business.

Avoid these common mistakes in landscape contract agreements

Your first years in the landscaping and lawn care industry can feel like learning all the things not to do. Mistakes are a natural part of becoming an expert, and many companies go through the same growing pains. 

However, a little research can help you to avoid some of the most common mistakes, positioning you ahead of your competition and better positioning you to scale in the future. 

Consult a sample landscaping contract for guidance, and avoid making these mistakes.

Not addressing the limitation of your control

When onboarding a new client, you want to communicate confidence and certainty about getting the job done. But working in landscape and lawn care, many factors are out of your control:

  • Weather: Describe your company policy regarding inclement weather and how it will affect the completion date for a project or scheduled maintenance services. 

  • Supply chain issues: Unfortunately, you may not always be able to get the products your customers want at the prices they want to pay for them. A contract offers contingencies and prepares customers for that potential. 

  • Pre-existing issues on the property: Once work begins, your field crew may discover challenges affecting the time frame, work hours, or supplies. Describing this potential in a contract makes it easier to execute a change order if necessary. 

Reminding customers that landscaping can be unpredictable is often enough to prevent future frustration and contentious client relationships. 

Being too vague

The advantage of working from a landscaping template is they’re easy to customize to every job.

While it’s tempting to send a generalized contract to every customer for your work, taking a few minutes to detail the services to be performed ensures you and the client are on the same page before a mower ever touches grass.

Not outlining the process for job modifications

It’s not unusual for customers to change their minds about the work they want to be done on their property. You want to be accommodating and adaptive, but verbal agreements are primed for misunderstandings. 

→ Use your contract to define how you execute job modifications after signing an agreement. Hint: it’s always in writing. 

When you create a template, customize it by vertical and service

Aspire business management software saves contract templates with standardized language for each vertical and service. The platform makes it easy to edit and send unique contracts for:

  • Residential homeowners, HOAs, community management offices, and commercial property owners

  • Design/install jobs, seasonal clean-ups, landscape maintenance, and lawn care services

  • Change order to adjust the scope of work on signed contracts

When you integrate your contract process with the rest of your workflow, you streamline operations and improve reliability in operations. 

End-to-end functionality in a cloud-based platform enables landscapers to combine their CRM with the proposal and contract process. Client details will auto-populate in the selected document, which will be sent directly from the platform. 

Enhance your landscaping contracts with Aspire

Once you’re in the habit of sending a contract to every client for every job, new challenges arise in managing the paperwork for a (hopefully) ever-growing customer base. Your arrangements should be as follows:

✔ Accessible to management, sales, and operations

✔ Easy to amend with change orders 

✔ Part of a property history

Paper-filing systems and desktop folders create more problems than they solve, including:

  • Paper and digital clutter

  • Lost and misplaced records

  • Duplicate customer files

  • Version control post-change order

Even if you’re keeping on top of document storage with your current organizational system, will it still work when you’ve doubled your customer base? 

Software with end-to-end functionality eliminates hassle and headaches in workflow

A landscaping business management platform like Aspire has robust customer relationship management functionality. From a single platform, you can:

  • Access current and completed contracts from customer and property files

  • Reference proposed but unsigned contracts

  • Automate the contract to work ticket process for unparalleled pipeline visibility

  • Run monthly reports to see contracts ready for renewal

With long-standing customers, keeping track of their contracts can be a hassle if you don’t have an automated digital system.

Aspire’s landscaping management software keeps a detailed history for every property, including:

  • Contracts

  • Change orders

  • Current and ongoing contracts.

There’s no searching through paper files, desktops, or hard drives to remember the services you conducted on a property last year or even five years ago. Aspire keeps track of it all. 

Save time and money by automating with management software

Landscaping business management software like Aspire empowers prompt, consistent service from your entire team and differentiates your brand from competitors, still manually entering contract information.

With Aspire, new clients can use electronic signature technology to sign proposals on the platform via the customer portal. The software then pushes the proposal through the workflow:

  • Once signed, contracts become work tickets

  • Users can find ready-to-schedule contracts in the Scheduling module, where they can drag and drop jobs onto the weekly or monthly view

  • Required supplies and materials for a contract populate in the Purchasing Assistant

  • Aspire’s invoicing assistant generates bills directly from the estimate and contract, including change orders, ensuring you’re paid the correct, current amount for the work completed on a property.

  • Run monthly reports to view ready-to-renew contracts, so you never send a work crew to a property without the protection of a current, accurate, signed contract

Replacing siloed processes with end-to-end functionality eliminates opportunities for errors. 

It’s an all-in-one platform that incorporates estimating software with the following capabilities:

  • Emails contracts for in-platform customer signatures

  • Orders materials and supplies

  • Schedules jobs

  • Invoices for completed work

  • Provides inventory management 

  • Deliver powerful reporting 

When you implement Aspire across your organization, there’s no duplicated or forgotten paperwork.

Easy management for landscaping contracts

There’s no denying that waiting to get a contract signed can slow down your workflow. However, it’s crucial not to put a job on the schedule until you have the signed agreement “in hand” (or saved to your CRM). 

→ You can inadvertently create downtime for a work crew by preemptively putting a job on the schedule and then discovering that the client hasn’t yet signed the contract.

Working on a property without the protection of a contract leaves you and your company vulnerable and creates inconsistencies in the way you work, which can spread to dropped processes in:

  • Materials and supplies ordering

  • Invoicing

  • Scheduling

Management software creates a framework for operations that eliminates workflow discrepancies between branches, departments, and team members.

Aspire is the only platform that scales with your organization, providing the tools and structure to keep you operating at maximum capacity, whether you’re doing $1 million or $5 million in annual revenue. 

Landscaping contract templates: FAQs

How do I create a contract for landscaping?

Start by downloading a free landscaping contract example to familiarize yourself with the essential information that will stay the same for every property and every job. Leave spaces for the custom information that changes, such as:

  • Dates 

  • Contact details for clients and properties

  • Service rates

Most landscapers work from several templates, depending on the vertical or the contract type. Consider:

  • Separate contracts for your residential and commercial clients

  • A template specific for maintenance work

  • Additional paperwork or a unique contract for design/builds

  • A template for change orders when the scope of a project changes

You may need to revise your contracts or draft new ones as you expand into new markets and verticals. 

Should I create landscape contract agreement templates?

Yes. Download Aspire’s free Landscape Management Agreement for your yearly maintenance clients. As you grow, create your own custom agreements for:

  • Season services

  • Your niche services

  • Different verticals

As you land bigger contracts, consider consulting with a law firm to ensure your documents adhere to the applicable laws of the states where you operate. 

Once you have a suite of templates, Aspire’s landscape management software will auto-populate relevant details from the landscaping CRM and send it to the customer directly from the platform for them to sign and kick off the work ticket.

What should I include in a landscaping contract template?

A landscaping agreement primarily describes:

  • The scope of work to be done by the landscaper

  • The timeline for completion

  • The timeline for payment from the customer

The specifics beyond those core details should be customized to your organization and the property.

Don’t try to include every service and vertical on a single contract. Customers may be overwhelmed or confused by details that aren’t relevant to them. Instead, use Aspire’s powerful reporting tools to create bespoken agreements for the different aspects of your business.

How do you negotiate a contract for landscaping services?

Some potential clients may ask for changes to your contract template, such as:

  • Non-standard services 

  • A different payment schedule

  • Added line items 

  • An accelerated or delayed timeline for service

Contract negotiation likely involves operations as well as sales and depends on the size of the contract. When considering customization of your services and processes, note the contract’s context:

→ A residential customer with a landscape design and construction contract versus…

→ A commercial client with a multi-property maintenance contract. 

Remember that the degree to which you negotiate may become part of your brand reputation in your market. If you don’t want to do bespoke work for every residential customer you land, be wary of making too many accommodations in the early stages of your business.


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