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any tree guys out there? Need help with pricing..

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by Ijustwantausername, Nov 15, 2011.

  1. Ijustwantausername

    Ijustwantausername LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,717

    I had a person ask about pruning 33 leyland cypress trees. They are all side by side and growing into the power lines. Some are touching the ground wire and some are not. They want just the tops cut out 2-4 ft. I don't have a bucket truck as pruning "tree tops" is not my specialty, so I will have to use a big ladder.

    The trees range from 18-22 ft high, and have been pruned before so the top part is really thin. I will need to haul them off which will be about a 7 minute ride for me. Any idea on pricing? I was thinking around $850 or so? Thanks.
  2. metro36

    metro36 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,417

    I would just sub it out to an arborist. Cutting anything near powerlines is risky and you really need the right equipment. I would also check your insurance to make sure you are covered for tree work near powerlines.
  3. Lugnut

    Lugnut LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 551

    Rent a tow behind lift if you are going to take the job...Usually, at least around my area, the lowest wire is cable or phone and electicity wires are towards the top, but the wire setup may be different by you so proceed with caution
  4. Ijustwantausername

    Ijustwantausername LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,717

    When you say sub it out, do you mean I call a real tree company, have them look at it, get their price, then tell the customer the price with my fee attached?
  5. KrayzKajun

    KrayzKajun LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,737

    Posted via Mobile Device
  6. PROCUT1

    PROCUT1 LawnSite Platinum Member
    from TN
    Messages: 4,891

    Thats how i would do it.
    Make some money and dont have to touch the job.

    Get a few estimates, from my experience there will be a huge spread.

    I dabbled in the tree business for a couple years, but I found 7 out of 10 calls i was getting started to be "How much will you pay me for the wood to take my tree down"

    I remember it used to cost a fortune to get a tree cut down and hauled away.

    Now you look on craigslist and there are 20 ads of guys that will come and take it for free.

    After paying 30 grand a year on insurance, and customers wanting me to work for free wood that i had to pay to dispose of anyway....I moved on from that venture
  7. Ijustwantausername

    Ijustwantausername LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,717

    I see. My only hold back is what if something goes wrong and the Homeowner comes after me? Do I tell them that I subbed it out, is that something I tell them prior to the job?

    What all do I need to make sure the contractor has? Insurance, WC, etc? Do I have the contractor sign something releasing me from liability and that the job is their responsibility?

    As you can see I am a little hesitant and perhaps I worry a bit much, but its tree service after all, I want to make sure I am covered. Thanks
  8. PROCUT1

    PROCUT1 LawnSite Platinum Member
    from TN
    Messages: 4,891

    Tell them you need a certificate of insurance naming your company as additional insured. That will cover it.
  9. thunderthud

    thunderthud LawnSite Member
    Messages: 127

    The second I read 'power lines' I became another voice in the sub it out chorus.

    You should not work near power lines without an insulated boom on a lift. An insulated boom bucket truck has an annual inspection to verify it is still insulated and will protect those in the basket. Another missed item is the people on the ground touching the truck: they're not insulted if the boom becomes electrified.

    Also, if you don't have a fiberglass ladder, you should not be anywhere near power lines of any kind.

    You may be able to have the local power company trim the trees for your client for free. If the trees are in the lines, they are responsible for keeping the lines free of limbs. I've spent the better part of the last two weeks hearing the words 'tree' and 'brush' more times than I care to count.
  10. nightshutter

    nightshutter LawnSite Senior Member
    from UT
    Messages: 513

    Sub it out! I have been in the same situation as you before. I have these apartments that I take care of that has a long row of trees entangled in power/phone lines. Can I do it myself? YES! Will I? NO! I have operated booms and cut down/Pruned trees plenty. Yes Im insured. If something would go wrong, That would be bad news bears. I told them to get an arborist that deals with these types of situations all the time. They respected me more because I told them to hire a arborist. They understand that I can do it, but sometimes you just need to past it on to someone more experienced in that area.

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