December 10, 2018

4 Tips To Help You Map Out Your Landscape Lighting

Installing proper landscape lighting Sarasota is all too often overlooked by homeowners. But it shouldn’t be, as good outdoor lighting can make your home more attractive to guests who arrive after the sun has gone down.

Landscape lighting can also provide safety and peace of mind for you and your family. This will increase visibility during the evening, allowing for more time spent outdoors and it is also a powerful deterrent for unwelcome visitors targeting homes that are poorly lit.

Best of all, a smart landscape lighting plan can improve curb appeal and increase your home’s resale value with a healthy return on investment into this vital home improvement project.

But first you need to put together a smart strategy for your outdoor lighting scheme because when it comes to putting in this type of system outside of your home, it’s all about careful preparation. Thorough attention to detail is key and that will require you to make some decisions as to where your lighting should be located, how much is really necessary, and the amount of wiring required to get the job done right.

Here are four critical landscaping lighting tips that you will need to keep in mind as you get started on this project. Each of them will serve you well for installing the landscape lighting system that is right for you and your home.

1. Preliminary Preparations

Sometimes it’s hard to get started because you’re not quite sure what to do or how to do it. Well, first things first, come up with a detailed game plan by doing an audit of the exterior of your property.

That includes checking out what the neighbors have done to get some ideas and see what they’ve chosen to light and how they’ve chosen to do it. So get in the car and take a drive down the street at night. What areas have been lit up? What did they use to do it? Jot down what you like and what you don’t as that will keep your ideas and observations fresh in your mind when you get back home.

Finding some inspiration in your neighborhood will allow you to make some difficult decisions as to the type of lighting you want to install and, more important, where you want to have it placed.

2. Start Plotting

Now that you’ve seen what the neighbors have done with their lighting schemes, it’s time for you to get out of the car and start walking around your own backyard, the front yard, the walkway, even the porch or patio.

Keep that trusty notebook by your side as you start to make some observations about the exterior of the home. Which locations need to be highlighted or lit up. Should you illuminate certain areas more than others? What kind of lighting is best for these locales?

It’s important to do all of this at night when you can get a better indication of what the property looks like in the dark and how you can best map out a reliable game plan for your outdoor lighting.

But when it’s daytime again head back out with the notes you made and start to take some measurements in the areas you identified the night before. These will help you figure out how much wiring you will need for properly installing everything you had in mind and give you some framework upon which you can start to decide what type of lighting you want to have installed in those locations.

Once you’ve done your measurements, sketch out a basic schematic of the exterior of your home. It doesn’t have to be perfect but it should be relatively accurate in terms of size, spacing, and location of various elements around the property. These are things like your driveway, gardening and trees, fences, posts, and, of course, your electrical box.

You should also include where you are thinking about placing lights around the home.

3. Power Sources


You’re going to need to be able to locate your electrical source and all power outlets that exist around the exterior of the home. You should also determine if you need to purchase a landscape transformer which can help ensure that your system will have enough capacity with which to operate. Some of these transformers can be plugged directly into a standard power outlet.

4. Choosing Your Lighting Types

Now it’s time to decide what type of lighting you want to select. But keep a couple things at the forefront of your mind, such as choosing landscaping lighting that complements and matches the style of your home. While you want your lighting to stand out and bring beautiful illumination to your property, it shouldn’t stand out like a sore thumb and clash with the d├ęcor and carefully considered decisions for your exterior design.

In addition, don’t choose lighting that will disturb your neighbors and cause a blinding glare that will point right into their yards or front steps.