Get Ready for the Outdoors With Hiatt’s Landscaping
Writer / Lois Tomaszewski
Photographer / Tony Straw
When you own a home on a lake, there is more to living in it than what is contained inside. The backyard becomes a place to relax and enjoy lake life. A well-planned, well-constructed, beautifully landscaped space adds value and comfort to any lakefront home.
Goose Hiatt, owner of Hiatt’s Landscaping in Rochester, understands how an outdoor space works with a home or business. His design for an outdoor patio at a popular Rochester eatery won awards. He is committed to bringing that same attention to detail to clients who want their outdoor living to match their upscale lifestyle.
Hiatt places a company emphasis on quality work. His crew members attend seminars and workshops that familiarize them with the newest materials. His credentials include certifications from the National Concrete Masonry Association for retaining walls, and the Interlocking Concrete Pavement Institute for patio construction. His company is a Unilock Authorized Contractor.
“We were the first contractor in Indiana to use Unilock’s U-Cara wall system and the Beacon Hill Smooth product,” Hiatt says. “We are not afraid of innovation. We try things other companies haven’t tried yet. We are excited about projects that are different.”
Hiatt uses the best material for any job he takes on, using his years of experience and specialized training to design and construct an outdoor space that fits within the parameters of the homeowner’s budget, tastes, and the space identified for use as a backyard retreat. These products include Unilock pavers and natural stone.
Outdoor living encompasses much more than a patio and a fire pit. People use their outdoor spaces as kitchens, living rooms and gathering places. Fireplaces, water features, retaining walls, pavilions and patio space are among many elements Hiatt and his crew have installed.
Many people, especially those who choose to live on any of the many lakes in the region, want to “make their own house a destination,” Hiatt says. That means an outdoor space that heightens the appreciation and enjoyment of time on a lake.
Using the industry’s best practices assures quality. That also means that Hiatt’s Landscaping is booked well in advance. The company’s reputation for quality precedes them.
“People will wait for us,” Hiatt says.
Lifestyle trends and decorating tastes change all the time. Hiatt says some popular trends right now are focused on adding pergolas, outdoor sound systems and lighting systems, as well as a higher percentage of paved spaces in the outdoor places people want to use.
Hardscape installations have been a specialized service of Hiatt’s Landscaping since 2006. Hiatt started a mowing company in 1993 after graduating from Taylor University with a business degree. As his experience and reputation developed, landscaping was added to the company service profile in 1999.
In 2018 the outdoor patio designed for the Rochester Bagel Shop provided the opportunity to upgrade to more large-scale projects, with more elaborate designs and multiple features. It also raised awareness of the company’s multiple services including hardscaping.
“Before this project, people thought we were just a mowing company,” Hiatt recalls.
This successful installation opened up more opportunities for larger residential and business projects in a multi-county region. Hiatt’s Landscaping has completed projects for Indiana homeowners on Lake Manitou, Lake Maxinkuckee, Lake Wawasee, Pretty Lake, Lake Latonka, and a lake in Cassopolis, Michigan.
Most of Hiatt’s recent projects have been at lakeside properties, which often present challenges in positioning equipment. Hiatt looks for equipment that can work effectively within the sometimes-limited space of a lakefront home’s backyard. He also monitors what’s going on in his industry to find new products, to give clients maximum value.
Among the values Hiatt places on his business is continuing education. He trains his employees, and they are encouraged attend additional educational training.
Hiatt’s Landscaping is also the site of continuing education for other landscapers in the region. Every winter Hiatt invites speakers to talk to landscapers about new products and techniques, and watch demonstrations. He also shares some of his knowledge on business. Many landscapers have the skills they need to be successful, but may not have the business acumen to keep their business running efficiently and profitably.
“I came into this business from the education sector,” Hiatt says. “I had to learn how to do the occupation.”
Now he is in the position to be able to share his advice with others. He does this to help other landscapers thrive. Hiatt says these landscapers are not his competitors, but rather his colleagues, part of a network in which referrals frequently result in work for others or work for his company.
“There is so much work out there,” he says. “I want those jobs that fit my company.”
About eight employees comprise Hiatt’s crews. He considers these employees family.
“I have a great group of guys,” he says. “They deliver quality service and build customer rapport.”
Many times his employees are the face of the company. There are some clients Hiatt himself has never met, but are still loyal because of the relationship they have with the mowing or landscaping crews.
Hiatt, a Fulton County native, and his wife Amy, have a 2-year-old son, Shepherd. The couple are expecting their second son, Sage, in April.
In addition to hardscape design and installation, Hiatt’s Landscaping also offers mowing and landscaping services, lawn and landscaping maintenance, as well as leaf and snow removal.
For more information, follow Hiatt’s Landscaping on Facebook or call 574-223-7515. Hiatt can be reached directly at 574-835-1999.