Frequently Asked Questions
Do you work for cash? Is it cheaper if we pay cash?
We get asked this all the time and the answer is no.
We will only accept payment via bank transfer or cheque and will always provide a VAT invoice.
Some other Cambridge landscaping contractors offering building or landscaping services work under the radar; they don’t charge VAT and don’t pay income tax. They can, therefore, charge up to 40% less than us while maintaining a good profit. This is illegal and both the companies and customers taking part in this practice are breaking the law. Hundreds are convicted in court over this each year.
All reputable and established Cambridge landscaping contractors will be VAT registered and charge VAT on all work undertaken.
There are plenty of reasons not to use a Cambridge landscaping company that is operating illegally as a cash-only cowboy, no matter how cheap they are:
• Why would you leave people working unattended at your home that you know to be dishonest?
• With no company receipt, you have no written guarantee if things go wrong at a later date
• Never give cash upfront as there is no paper trail, leaving you vulnerable to being ripped off
• You could be prosecuted for tax evasion
Are you expensive?
There is a big difference between ‘cheap’ and ‘good value’.
Summit Landscapes only uses stone that is ethically sourced. Much of the sandstone and limestone paving that is used throughout the UK is mined using child labour in developing countries. We pay a little extra for such materials to guarantee that it comes from an ethical source, so we may not be the cheapest quote you get, as we operate our company ethically and legally.
Are you good value for money?
Summit Landscapes are definitely good value!
• Excellent customer satisfaction
• We aim to over-deliver at all times
• A long list of happy residential and commercial customers that use us repeatedly and recommend us to others
• We are constantly training and keeping up with industry developments to pass on the best knowledge and service to our customers
• Our staff are well-trained, experienced, passionate, insured and hard working
• Our rates are competitive with other established companies.
What guarantees do you offer?
We stand by our work and offer a 10-year warranty on all masonry work.
Do you charge for quotes?
Yes and no. During peak times we find ourselves so busy that we physically cannot service every enquiry we receive, so at these times of the year, we charge a small fee. This serves two purposes:
• It removes a lot of enquiries from people who are just looking and not serious about our service
• It keeps us free to spend more time professionally servicing our paying customers
If you decide to use us, this fee is refunded. We produce a fully transparent quotation and detailed description of works.
Do we do pattern imprinted concrete?
No, we don’t. We have decided not to offer this service for the following reasons:
• It is not durable enough and requires too much maintenance
• It needs re-colouring and sealing every three years to maintain its appearance
• Localised repairs stand out and look ugly
• Salting in the winter etches the surface and causes discolouration
It may be cheaper than other hard surfaces to install, but we do not want to attach our name to any product that is not durable enough to last. A well-laid drive or patio should last a lifetime.
The joints in our old paving became loose. Does this happen with your patios?
Please see our paving Cambridge section for installation techniques adopted by Summit Landscapes. We use an excellent product that guarantees perfect results with the paving every time and even covers a 10-year warranty.
Do you charge for designs?
This depends on the level of detail required and the size of the job in question. The cost of designs increases based on how much work is involved. We can advise you of this during the consultation process which is free.
How much will my new driveway cost?
Without visiting your property and measuring up, it can be tricky pricing a driveway. Prices of materials such as paving, resin and gravel can vary, but estimates can be given: Block paving a standard two-car driveway will cost around £4-6k, a Resin Bound Gravel driveway will cost between £6-8k. A five-car driveway can exceed £12,000. From October 2015, block paving is around £90-110/m², resin is £126-150/m². When a hard surface like tarmac or concrete is already present, Resin Bound Gravel can be applied to the surface following preparation for £50-60m².
Are there any hidden charges?
As professional Cambridge commercial landscapers, we take great pride in working ethically. After conducting a site survey, we issue a written quotation with a complete breakdown of charges.
If you require extra work, we will issue you a separate quote.
Do I need to be there while the work is carried out?
No. Many of our clients go on holiday while work is done, while others like to be there to check the progress. Once your design and material list have been arranged, we can get started – wherever you choose to be.
Will there be a mess?
We always keep our working site as clean and tidy as possible. Although most driveways and gardens require excavations, this is executed as neatly as possible. We fully understand the stress and disruption to a property that can come with Cambridge landscaping work, so always do our best to clean up at the end of each day and keep disruption to the rest of the property to an absolute minimum.
Will I need to arrange a skip?
No. We take care of all aspects of the job – and we usually use our quick and effective grab lorry for disposal.
Are we insured?
Absolutely. Our fully-comprehensive insurance covers up to £5,000,000 for public indemnity and employer’s liability.
Do I need planning permission for my new driveway?
You won’t require planning permission as long as your driveway slopes towards a house or the road and rainfall must be channelled away. Resin Bound Gravel and permeable Cambridge paving don’t need planning permission. If, however, planning permission is needed for your project, be assured that Summit Landscapes have an excellent working relationship with Cambridge Council Building Control.
During our free design consultation, our designer will discuss what is required.
Please call us on 01223 929394 to discuss any Cambridge landscaping enquiries you have.
Please have a look at some of our recently completed Cambridge landscaping projects here.