• Hiring a tree service company can be a difficult decision especially when the service is something that has the potential to hurt people or damage property like taking down a large oak tree.  Here are some things you should consider as you navigate the process of hiring a tree business to do work for you.

    • Ensure that the businesses that you are considering are all properly licensed and insured. If necessary ask to see copies of their license and insurance.  If anything seems out of order or you have any hesitations about the business move on to the next one.  Tree businesses should have insurance policies in place for both workers compensation and general liability insurance.  In addition to insurance, there are several industry certifications that are fairly standard for Arborists and tree care professionals.  The Tree Care Industry Association (TCIA) and the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA).  You should consider businesses that have certifications from both.
    • How long has the company been in business? Do they have references?  You don’t want to take chances with fly by night companies who haven’t been around the block a time or two.  You want your work performed by a reputable and experienced business.  If the business has been around for more than a few years that is a good indication that they have made a name for themselves, take pride in their work, and continue to generate business.  The same may not be said for a business that is just starting out.  An established business should willingly provide several references upon request.  You can check with your local Better Business Bureau to see if there have been any complaints written about the company and you can see how they were handled and more importantly if they have been resolved.
    • What type of equipment does the company use? What impression did you get of the vehicle the person who gave you the estimate drove?  Was it a company vehicle? If so, was it damaged?  Ask about the equipment that is going to be used on the job and consider how old the equipment is and whether or not the equipment they are going to use can actually accomplish the job at hand.
    • Ask about the business and find out where they are located. A local business is likely going to offer you a better job estimate than a regional business that might have to travel to reach you.  Travel means idle workers and fuel expenses which are normally passed on to the consumer unless you are fortunate that the business might already be working in the area or they are hard pressed to find work.
    • Ask what types of payment the business accepts. Be wary of businesses that operate “cash only” do not accept credit cards.
    • Find out how many employees the company has and how long they have been working in the industry. Fly by night tree companies usually do not offer competitive wages and properly compensate their workers.  This results in a high employee turnover rate leaving few if any long tenured employees.

    Unfortunately, there is no way to fully guarantee that any tree care company you choose is the very best company for the job.  Use these tips as a guide to hiring the right tree company for the work you need done.  Find out in advance what you are going to be paying for.  If you are not sure what the costs associated with the work will be you can always learn more about tree removal pricing.