Trees: We love them. The lush forests of the Pacific Northwest are one of the best things about living in this part of the country. Trees provide oxygen, shelter, and shade, and are just rather nice to look at. But sometimes, unfortunately, there’s a tree on your property that you’d prefer wouldn’t be there, or perhaps it poses a hazard to either you or a neighbor. In this case, you should call a tree removal expert. Tree removal can be expensive, however, so it’s wise to shop around and get quotes before committing.
But what actually is included in a tree removal free quote? What services can you expect to be included in that price—and just as important, what’s not in the quoted price? Let’s break down the common expenses involved in tree removal and demystify the world of tree removal price quotes.
How Are Trees Removed?
To understand the quoted price to remove a tree, it helps to understand how a tree is removed in the first place. In nearly all cases, a tree being removed will be killed (if it’s not dead already). It is possible to transplant trees virtually intact, roots and all, but this can be a very expensive and particular process, and this is generally only used for particularly valuable trees or in rare situations.
The first two points of concern when removing a tree are where is the tree located and how big is it? A tree that is located on property where there is sufficient room for it to be cut down without risking falling on any buildings (or people) is removed in a different way than a tree that cannot fall freely.
If there is room for the tree to fall:
In this case, removal is much simpler, as the tree can be cut down or knocked over without much worry. First, the tree’s branches are removed, leaving just the main trunk, then the tree is felled. Once the tree has been felled, then it can be cut to pieces on the ground, and those smaller pieces will be transported away.
If there isn’t room for the tree to fall:
Things get a little trickier here, though any tree removal company worth its salt will still be able to handle this. Branches will be removed as with the previous method, but rather than felling the tree and cutting it to pieces while it is downed, the tree will be cut and sectioned piece by piece from top to bottom, each of which is then lowered and removed. This process is called “roping down” the tree.
After the bulk of the tree has been removed, leaving just the stump, the stump can be destroyed using a grinder, and the tree removal work is (usually) considered done.
What Can You Expect to Find in a Free Quote for Tree Removal?
When you ask a tree removal company to give you a quote for their services, there are a number of tasks that you can generally expect will be included in just about every quote.
- Cutting the tree down. Whether your tree removal service is felling the entire tree or roping it down, you can be certain that your arborist will be including all costs for the most critical part of tree removal, as surely as you can say “timber.”
- Cleaning up small litter. Whether it’s smaller branches, wood chips, or something of the sort, you can be assured that your tree removal company is going to clean up after their work.
These, consisting of the bulk of the work, will be included in virtually every tree removal service quote.
Be sure to ask about
There are other tasks commonly, but not always, included in a quote—and you should be sure to ask your arborist if these are included, just to make sure.
- Removal of wood. Felling a tree creates quite a bit of wood, and removing that much wood can require specialized vehicles. It’s common for most tree removal companies to include this in their pricing, but you should be certain and ask.
- Stump grinding. Arborist companies will often tell you how much it will cost to grind the stump down after the tree has been felled and removed but not always. If you don’t want to leave the stump in your yard, be sure to confirm that the quoted price includes the destruction of the stump as well.
- Travel costs. If you contract a tree removal service that’s located some distance from your property (for instance, if your property itself is remote), then you can likely expect them to factor fuel and time into the tree removal free quote they give you.
Make a request
There are some additional services that not all tree removal companies will provide, and you may have to request them specifically. These include things like:
- Root removal. For most tree removal companies, the job ends when the stump has been ground down to nothing. However, you may be removing a tree because you want to do something else with that part of your property, such as build a structure or even plant another, different tree. In that case, you will want the entire root system removed, which is a specialty cost that you should inquire about specifically.
- Tree splitting and wood usage. Timber can have many uses, and it’s not uncommon, especially in more rural areas, for people contracting a tree removal service to want the tree’s wood to not be removed but instead split into usable pieces like logs for firewood. While most tree removal companies will offer this service or at least know a subcontractor who can do it for them, it is not an assumed service and should be specifically requested.
- Permitting and inspection assistance. Depending on where you live, like Oregon, there may be regulations on trees you are allowed to remove or cut down. If your trees are close to power or telephone lines, you may also need to have inspections done. A tree removal service can help navigate this process, but there may be extra fees required for them doing it rather than you taking care of it yourself.
If there’s something you’re not sure of, you should make sure to ask. And always remember that tree removal, when done by an amateur, can be incredibly dangerous. Always hire a trained arborist such as Mr. Tree for tree removal work and be sure to get a free quote.