Tools you will need:
Use ¼” graph paper as it’s a great guide for 90 degree angles and connecting angled lines
Its best to use a pen when writing down measurements as the graph square tend to disappear when scanned. (If you feel more comfortable starting in pencil, just be sure to trace over it with pen)
Step 1- Measuring Your House (click on the pictures to enlarge the image)
Whether you are measuring your front or backyard it’s best to start where your fence and house intersect and work your way around to the other side of your house.
Write down the measurements of each section of your house. (Example: from wall to window and to the next wall)
You can use either all inches or feet and inches (5’-0” or 60”)
When measuring, round to the nearest ½”
When measuring a door, sliding doors, or windows make a note next to the measurement by writing “door” or “window”
It is also great to include: irrigation valve, hosebibs, downspouts, electric outlets, meters and ac units. Rule of thumb is: If you are keeping it, add it to the plan
Step 2- Measuring Your Property (click on the pictures to enlarge the image)
Measure the distance from your house to the outer edges of your fence/property line or curb (for front yards)
Always measure both house corners, as they are not always the same length from where they intersect the house (not every lot is a perfect rectangle!)
Make note of any gates and which direction they open
Once you have the perimeter of your house measured, measure any hardscape materials such as existing concrete, pavers, decks, raised planter beds, retaining walls, arbors and posts or any deep eaves or awnings.
Step 3- Measuring Your Plants (click on the pictures to enlarge the image)
Trees and plants: if there are any trees or plants you want to keep mark their location on the plan. Use a point of reference that will not move (fence or house) and write down measurements as if you are measuring from the center of the tree.
Why is a plan drawn accurately to-scale important? A plan is used to determine materials and labor. Whether you get competitive bids from contractors or buy some of the materials yourself, a to-scale drawing will help you obtain with correct material and plant pricing.