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T56 Impala
06-08-2010, 07:58 PM
I have a Bradford Pear that I need to have trimmed up or limbed up as I have heard it called. It is in an area between my driveway and my neighbors. I am sick of the branches hitting the roof of my car and I'm sure my neighbor is too. I called several tree "experts" in the phone book but all want $50 just to come out and give me and estimate. (I would get it back if I use their service) I find this appalling!

Anyone in the Roswell GA area have a recommendation?

Think Green
06-08-2010, 10:02 PM
T56,
We are in the tree business also. I don't wan't to come across as an old fart here, but we get plenty of calls in the fall for tree trimming on small trees. Most customers are wanting preliminary drive out bids just to base services to the cheapest tree service. This eats our time and labor hours. I understand this is not a customer problem but the real issue is cost.
I can tell you that if a customer is serious enough to pay for a service call, we will come out and if we get the job, the fee is deducted from the overall bill.
If this tree is on the lot line, then you and your neighbor has to agree on the cost split.
We do not get into dispute issues with divider trees unless a signed agreement from both of you are done. A reputable tree service should have explained this before hand at least to educate you and keep you from becoming irate. I have driven 15 miles one way to learn that someone was wanting pruning advice and nothing more after arriving. If we don't receive some sort of restitution then we lose money.

Get the needed permission from your neighbor before you contact a arborist and have this in writing and signature. Then you both can negotiate the fees incurred. I bet the tree service will waive the fees from the bill.

T56 Impala
06-09-2010, 12:18 PM
When calling, I explain fully what I would like done. There are HUNDREDS of tree specialists listed in the phone books here. I see them in our neighborhood regularly. As the economy is tight and there seems to be quite a lot of competition, why not give free estimates? I'm not willing to pay Billy Bob $50 to come out here in his beat up old pick up to tell me that he can do the job for $300.

If a service provider is serious about getting my business, then that provider can give a "free" estimate. The cost of those calls should be built into his or her business plan. If not, then they are poor business people. If money is so tight that they can't pump $20 worth of gas in there car or truck, maybe they are doing something wrong and should reconsider their chosen occupation.

I usually add to my list of things once a provider gives comes. For example, I have 25' ceilings and don't do well with heights. I called a few painters for estimates. Once I chose one, I asked them to paint other rooms as well. They made more money and had more work. They were very happy. Example #2, my home is three stories. Again, I don't do well with heights. I called out a gutter cleaning company. Once on site, I figured that while they were here, they could wash the windows. They were very happy to accommodate me. More money for them! Guess what? I was so happy with the outside windows, I had the do the inside too. even more business for them. Its a win-win.

Same goes for this tree trimming. If someone would simply have a good business plan and come give me an estimate, I might just have more work for them that day if not later on. One thing is for sure, they would get paid for doing what they sell.

HenryB
06-09-2010, 12:30 PM
When calling, I explain fully what I would like done. There are HUNDREDS of tree specialists listed in the phone books here. I see them in our neighborhood regularly. As the economy is tight and there seems to be quite a lot of competition, why not give free estimates? I'm not willing to pay Billy Bob $50 to come out here in his beat up old pick up to tell me that he can do the job for $300.

If a service provider is serious about getting my business, then that provider can give a "free" estimate. The cost of those calls should be built into his or her business plan. If not, then they are poor business people. If money is so tight that they can't pump $20 worth of gas in there car or truck, maybe they are doing something wrong and should reconsider their chosen occupation.

I usually add to my list of things once a provider gives comes. For example, I have 25' ceilings and don't do well with heights. I called a few painters for estimates. Once I chose one, I asked them to paint other rooms as well. They made more money and had more work. They were very happy. Example #2, my home is three stories. Again, I don't do well with heights. I called out a gutter cleaning company. Once on site, I figured that while they were here, they could wash the windows. They were very happy to accommodate me. More money for them! Guess what? I was so happy with the outside windows, I had the do the inside too. even more business for them. Its a win-win.

Same goes for this tree trimming. If someone would simply have a good business plan and come give me an estimate, I might just have more work for them that day if not later on. One thing is for sure, they would get paid for doing what they sell.

Are all arborists named "Billy Bob"? All drive beat up pick up trucks?I need knee surgery should the Dr drive to my house and give me a free estimate? Your post is condescending and offensive? Free estimates are a choice not an obligation.

Think Green
06-09-2010, 09:55 PM
T56,
I appreciate you choice of well mentioned responses to the ill respected common old tree service with the beat up trucks. It may be a local scenario but in my area, these beat up truck tree services get these dents from doing tremendous numbers of tree removals, thinning, dead wooding, and other facets of tree work. I do not down grade the company that subs through us. Sorry, I don't look at a truck and make judgment from observations of vehicle integrity.
Henry B. kind of summed up the case in a straight forward manner as it is in our interests to offer free estimates, However there is an extent to how far this goes. We have a sound business plan......one that everyone doesn't partake in and we offer a customer more than their share as long as the time is alloted for the task at hand. I am delighted that the other service professionals were able to complete more tasks set aside for them at a moments notice to appease your appetite. I take no offense to your opinions and hope that you will find a tree professional that will not charge you a fee. Remember, the fee is imposed for reasons of perspective. If this tree company(s) will not negotiate or budge on their fee prices, then keep searching.........one will be available. The last thing to consider is...............make sure they show you credentials of license, insurance and workman's compensation. Often, these fly by night services that show up at a moments notice and are ready to do more work at a moments notice are the one's that aren't busy or are greener than a turnip. Sorry!!

T56 Impala
06-10-2010, 12:27 PM
Touchy aren't we?

I EXPECT and DEMAND that whoever I choose to work for me does so in a professional manner. PERIOD. I DO judge by the condition of the companies equipment. If they don't take care of what brings in the money, how should I think they will take care of MY property?

The landscape PROFESSIONAL I had construct my back yard washed all of his equipment prior to showing up at my home. His trucks and tractors were clean and well maintained. His personal vehicle was spotless. His crew cleaned up everyday prior to leaving. His estimate was spot on and he did not charge me a "fee" for coming out here numerous times prior to starting construction. He drives a GMC 6500 too. Fuel for that monster must cost him a nice chunk every time he fires it up.

The reason I hire people to do this for me is because I too, as many, have health issues. I need back surgery. Broke it twice along with my neck once. Does that mean I don't need to take care of my cars, tools or home?

FWIW, no.... they are not all named Billy Bob. Some are named Hank, Randy, Tom and even Sally! As for the trucks, yeah, they all do drive beat up crap. How about they show a little respect for others? Is that too much to ask?

FLAhaulboy
06-10-2010, 11:33 PM
This is a funny thread! Please post more stuff. :-)

I charge a fee as well. Of course, if your within x miles of my location, you get a free estimate, if your far away, I charge a service fee but I come prepared to do the job when I give a quote-price to the client. I started charging a fee to weed out those people who just want estimates or free advice.

Good luck finding someone to trim your tree

WirelessG
06-11-2010, 12:53 AM
It seems to me that it simply is what it is. If all tree service companies in your area charge an estimate fee, then I afraid you're stuck with it. I will say, however, that I had a company come out and quote removal of some red and white oaks on my property. They didn't charge a fee for the estimate and their bill was quite reasonable. I guess it just varies by the area.

cgaengineer
06-12-2010, 08:47 AM
I have never been charged for an estimate for tree removal. I normally use the first guy that comes out so it pays to get motivated. I do understand why some charge though.

whosedog
06-12-2010, 09:35 AM
This is a funny thread! Impala control freak telling think green how he should run his business,priceless! I think I read on another thread that the reason for the estimate charge was that in order to give a proper bid on pruning diseased trees the arborist has to rig up and climb the trees and should be compensated for the climbing.In my area because there are so many tree guys most give free estimates to get the business.I refer people to one guy cause I know he always gives a fair price,I've given him dozens of referrals;(maybe I should ask him for a commission).

Kiril
06-12-2010, 09:47 AM
I EXPECT and DEMAND that whoever I choose to work for me does so in a professional manner. PERIOD. I DO judge by the condition of the companies equipment. If they don't take care of what brings in the money, how should I think they will take care of MY property?

Silly me .... I thought the quality of work is what matters most.

Seen plenty of contractors with a lot of "new" equipment/trucks, all clean and well maintained ............ that are nothing more than hacks trying to pay off the debt they generated when they bought all that equipment/trucks by overcharging for crappy work.

As for the trucks, yeah, they all do drive beat up crap. How about they show a little respect for others? Is that too much to ask?

And yet you expect these very same people to drive around all day giving free estimates. You are a real piece of work dude.

T56 Impala
06-14-2010, 03:07 PM
There is no climbing involved. Its a Bradford Pear for goodness sakes. Its 15 years old. All I what is for it to be limbed up. IF...BIG IF... there is something wrong with the tree, it isn't a big deal. These things blow apart in storms as they are very weak trees. They grow fast so replacing if and when that happens is no big deal.

As for me being a control freak, you should meet me before ASSuming anything. I deal with Forbes top 10 companies daily. I know what a good business plan looks like. Heck, I ran my own small business for a while too. All fees should be included in the bottom line bid. If I charged an up front fee to company so I could sell my service to them, I would be laughed out of town.

So in short, you think its if fair that a service company shows up to give an estimate, but they do not appear to be trustworthy, that they get paid anyway? How about you called, say, a roofing company to fix a hole in your roof. You pay them $50 to give you an estimate, but you find out while talking to them on site, that they do not have insurance. You would simply pay them the $50? OR Would you ask them to leave and call someone else with out paying them a dime?

This whole debate is silly. You do what you feel you need to do. I'll chose my providers more carefully and save my money. A reputable company is due here at 3:00pm today to give me an estimate. No charge. If we agree on a price, they will get the job. If not, then I will find someone else.

Kiril
06-14-2010, 07:17 PM
:rolleyes: Yes .... there is certainly something silly in this thread.

green connect
06-16-2010, 04:10 PM
was somebody just looking for an argument?? Silly thread.

LarryF
06-16-2010, 11:28 PM
A reputable company is due here at 3:00pm today to give me an estimate. No charge. If we agree on a price, they will get the job. If not, then I will find someone else.

How did you make out? From what you described, I got the impression it wouldn't take much time to snip off a few branches while standing on the ground, so the charge should have been fairly low. I agree with you, by the way. I wouldn't pay someone for an estimate on such a small job. Certainly not 50 bucks. That's all I paid a couple of months to have a tall tree (about 35 feet) topped, one in which some of the top branches had broken during an ice storm last winter and were hanging. I had expected the guy to climb up to do it, but he brought a crane instead. He scheduled the work so that he could also take care of some trees the neighbors wanted removed. but my cost was only $50. It only took him about 10 minutes, so it seemed to me that he made out ok. He wanted $75 if he were to grind up the branches, but no, I'll burn the wood in my fireplace next winter.

cgaengineer
06-17-2010, 08:49 PM
I called 3 tree guys and only one came out...he got the job. I guess they must be booming in this economy.
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nmurph
06-17-2010, 11:49 PM
I have a Bradford Pear that I need to have trimmed up or limbed up as I have heard it called. It is in an area between my driveway and my neighbors. I am sick of the branches hitting the roof of my car and I'm sure my neighbor is too. I called several tree "experts" in the phone book but all want $50 just to come out and give me and estimate. (I would get it back if I use their service) I find this appalling!

Anyone in the Roswell GA area have a recommendation?

it is your prerogative to seek someone to give a free estimate. likewise, it is the companies choice whether to give free estimates. my guess is that those that want a fee for an estimate do so to weed out HO seeking low-ball estimates. they have enough work and need to make money for their time. does a dr. not charge you if you come to his office and he can't find anything wrong with you? don't whine when someone doesn't want to play by your rules. it is a free country and that cuts both ways, doesn't it?

cgaengineer
06-18-2010, 12:06 AM
If I charged for lawn care estimates I would never have any work.
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nmurph
06-18-2010, 12:33 AM
no disrespect, but anybody with a mower and trailer can call themselves a lawn service, and if you choose the wrong one the worst that is likely to happen is a bad looking lawn for a week. did you notice that when the economy went south the number of "lawncare" companies that popped up? not so with tree services. with tree service the investment are much higher. you are looking at a minimum of 2 trucks, a chipper, a dump, several saws, at least 3-4 groundies, thousands in liability insurance, likely a boom truck and a high priced climber (relative to a mower jockey) etc.......and if a tree service has a bad day..............destruction, mayhem and even death are always knocking at the door.

cgaengineer
06-18-2010, 12:38 AM
If you charge me for an estimate I will use someone else...there are plenty of licensed, insured and skilled tree service people who give free estimates. If you give free estimates and are the last to show up you will likely lose the job...it pays to hustle.
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nmurph
06-18-2010, 12:44 AM
If you charge me for an estimate I will use someone else...there are plenty of licensed, insured and skilled tree service people who give free estimates. If you give free estimates and are the last to show up you will likely lose the job...it pays to hustle.
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as i said in my initial post, your prerogative as well as mine.

cgaengineer
06-18-2010, 12:47 AM
And just because he charges $50 for an estimate doesn't mean he is competent. And just because a tree service gives free estimates doesn't mean he is a low balling hack either.
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