Trees are extremely important to the environment and our survival as a population, which is why we have the goal to plant a million trees.  Having said that, it’s also important to select a tree service that knows what they’re doing. When you have a yard, the smart homeowner will keep it orderly and trimmed. Keeping it orderly will keep the value of your property up and will keep away pests. Keeping a yard neat and trimmed will take quite a bit of time and effort. It is something that the homeowner can do themselves or, to save time, hire a professional crew to do the job for them. When you do decide to hire a professional tree service crew, it is important that you be discerning of the company that you get. When browsing the many different tree service companies, it is important that both of you be clear about the job to be done. Let’s review some rather important questions that any homeowner needs to ask a professional tree crew before they are considered for hiring. (1)Are they suitably licensed and insured? If a tree service company cannot and refuse to show you proper accreditation, this should serve as a clear warning sign that you’re dealing with a shady organization. As hardware is required for tree services, tree crewmen require proper certification to be able to utilize their field necessitated tools. A tree service company needs to be suitably insured to protect their employees and clients from any unforeseen events. (2) Can they come in to do an ocular inspection in order to be considered? Before a good company tells you that they’ll be able to do the job you require, they should ask you if they can do an ocular inspection of your yard. The reason behind this is even if they take the job but aren’t equipped to handle the issue, they’ve wasted precious time and money. A substandard company will tell you that they are fully able to do the job done before they actually see the area. If you ever ask if they can come in to do an ocular and they say that they can’t or will require an exorbitant fee, that’s a good sign they’re not a good company to work with. (3) If a tree needs to be removed, what sort of equipment will they use? A well equipped and competent tree service company will be able to give you a clear list of the sort of hardware they’ll be using. During tree removal procedures, tree service companies should have most if not all of these: chainsaws, safety gear, trucks, axes, and grinders. If they may lack anything, they won’t be an ideal company to hire. (4) What is the usual duration of their services? When you ask a tree service company how long they may take, they should be able to list off a few of their actual experiences of scenarios and durations. This is a good way to check the experience level of the company you’re talking to. It should also give you a solid idea on what dates would be ideal for them to come in and get the job done. (5) Will they be able to provide you with an estimate of overall cost? Professional tree services companies have set rates for particular services. If you will be able to give ample description of the services you require, they should be able to give you a suitable estimate of what it’ll cost you. You may want to fully ask them the cost of any other services like tree removal or pruning. A comprehensive list of costs can help you decide on a final company to go with and give you a more concrete idea if certain services are feasible at your current financial state. You can use a clear estimate of costs to compare rates given to you by other companies you speak with and narrow down your choices to only which fit your needs. (6) Would they have a list of references you can contact? If you’re speaking with a company you did not get from a first hand referral, it’s good to be a little bit stricter than usual with regard to your screening process. Good tree service companies will be more than happy to provide you with a list of people you can speak with. It is customary at the end of services rendered that the company or the team that handled your case will ask if they may be able to use you as a reference for other clients that may need a little push to say yes. Hearing first hand accounts of how well or how terrible a job they made will help you determine if this company is worth hiring. Having references is also a good way of showing any and all clients that their company and their crew have the necessary experience with the field of tree services. Hiring a crew with a slew of bad referrals is just asking for trouble to happen. (7) Will they be requiring a down payment? If any tree service firm tells you that they require a down payment, tick them off your list. It is common knowledge that you must never pay for any service before the job is actually done. This protects your funds and opens up an avenue for later disputes for botched jobs. (8) Do they currently have any promos going on? Depending on the season, like in the midst of summer or before winter, tree service companies have promos and discounts to attract clients. If you manage to secure a promotional deal, you’ll be saving extra money for you to use elsewhere.   Tree servicing is not an easy job and is not something that should be done by inexperienced homeowners. Save yourself the hassle and hire a local company but take careful note of the questions listed above and you can use them to secure yourself quality and effective service.

Updated  March 26, 2007

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