Removing a tree - expensive!!!

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keaton
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by keaton » Sat Apr 22, 2017 10:35 am

Ask around locally, as there could be a guy that does it on the side just via word of mouth. My father does tree removal as a hobby and it's all via word of mouth. Fully insured and licensed but you would never find this kind of person in the yellow pages (is that even a thing anymore?) or online.

The nice thing about having arborists in the family, is you never run out of wood! The cost of heating your house comes way down when you have a few cords to go through over the winter.

hudson
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by hudson » Sat Apr 22, 2017 12:02 pm

dm200 wrote:We have an old Silver maple that needs to be removed. It is still alive, but not "healthy". It is the last of three still standing, where the other two from when we bought the house 38 years ago have fallen down. I suspect that this remaining tree may be suffering from the same sort of interior trunk "issues" that caused them to fall. I receiced a quote (good for six months) of $1,850 to remove the tree (but not the stump). We live on a narrow lot (62.5 ft) and the tree is midway between our house and the neighbor (but on our property). It is about 12-15 ft from each house.

I doubt there is a "safe" lower cost alternative.

Ideas!
Getting a professional to do this kind job is great life or accident insurance.
Getting a liability insurance certificate from the contractor is a good idea.

likegarden
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by likegarden » Sat Apr 22, 2017 12:23 pm

I am happy to pay more for knowledgeable people cutting my trees down. Accidents can happen easily to others. Actually I enjoy watching the tree service I always employ removing my trees, they are well trained and well organized. There is never a mishap and they clean up well afterwards. I heard that recently a tree someone else was cutting fell on a house, those tree cutters drove away quickly, the homeowner asked the service I usually employ for help, and they cleaned up that mess.

Wakefield1
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by Wakefield1 » Sat Apr 22, 2017 2:17 pm

Might want to browse "International Society of Arboriculture" website-I think their certification was encouraged for people applying for a Tree Crew job in the County

ImUrHuckleberry
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by ImUrHuckleberry » Sat Apr 22, 2017 2:56 pm

I had a huge weeping birch very close to my house that had to go. After getting a couple of quotes for over a grand, I ended up going with a "word of mouth" reference for $250, and wasn't smart enough to ask for insurance certs or anything like that.

The crew showed up on a Saturday with a bucket truck from a major company (think it was Comcast but maybe Verizon) to do the job. The job went well, but I wonder what would have happened if they had dropped the tree on my house. I'm sure their weekday employer would not have been amused.

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dm200
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by dm200 » Sat Apr 22, 2017 3:03 pm

If a tree is being trimmed, then you want folks who know about "tree health". if it is being removed, then the folks doing it need to know nothing about tree health - just do not drop the tree on a house :)

drawpoker
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by drawpoker » Sun Apr 23, 2017 9:16 am

Don't forget some other possible expenses involved here. Esp. if you live in a designated "Tree City" or some similar "green" type ordinances.
Ex: here in next-door to you Md - I was required to obtain permission from the town first. Ordinance does not allow any trees to be removed unless they are certified to be in grave disease and cannot be "saved".
Then, if the town allows the tree to be taken down, guess what, yup, ordinance requires that it must be replaced with a new tree.
So, when I had to go thru this several years ago (removing a huge White Oak 90% dead :shock: ) I was on the hook for another $200-$300 for new tree and labor to plant it.
So, if you live in a municipality that requires this - you may want to find a tree company that can perform both parts of the job to save some $$$.
I recall the whole job cost me around $1,300 in 2011. (Part of that cost I am sure was the no. of workers required since they had to temporarily close off the street and block traffic for quite some time since my house is on the corner)

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dm200
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by dm200 » Sun Apr 23, 2017 9:17 am

drawpoker wrote:Don't forget some other possible expenses involved here. Esp. if you live in a designated "Tree City" or some similar "green" type ordinances.
Ex: here in next-door to you Md - I was required to obtain permission from the town first. Ordinance does not allow any trees to be removed unless they are certified to be in grave disease and cannot be "saved".
Then, if the town allows the tree to be taken down, guess what, yup, ordinance requires that it must be replaced with a new tree.
So, when I had to go thru this several years ago (removing a huge White Oak 90% dead :shock: ) I was on the hook for another $200-$300 for new tree and labor to plant it.
So, if you live in a municipality that requires this - you may want to find a tree company that can perform both parts of the job to save some $$$.
I recall the whole job cost me around $1,300 in 2011. (Part of that cost I am sure was the no. of workers required since they had to temporarily close off the street and block traffic for quite some time since my house is on the corner)
None of this is applicable in this case.

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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by wfrobinette » Sun Apr 23, 2017 8:14 pm

dm200 wrote:We have an old Silver maple that needs to be removed. It is still alive, but not "healthy". It is the last of three still standing, where the other two from when we bought the house 38 years ago have fallen down. I suspect that this remaining tree may be suffering from the same sort of interior trunk "issues" that caused them to fall. I receiced a quote (good for six months) of $1,850 to remove the tree (but not the stump). We live on a narrow lot (62.5 ft) and the tree is midway between our house and the neighbor (but on our property). It is about 12-15 ft from each house.

I doubt there is a "safe" lower cost alternative.

Ideas!
In NJ, I paid 1000(2016) for a 40 ft tree 15 feet from my house right, deck with railing down 1 side of the tree, fencing 20 feet away on other side and a pool deck 20 feet away. This included grinding the stump to 6 inches below ground. Should have gone 12".

Get a few more quotes

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White Coat Investor
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by White Coat Investor » Sun Apr 23, 2017 10:00 pm

I've taken down about a dozen trees myself, including at least a couple that were taller than the house and planted within 3 feet of it (yea, don't get me started on what kind of an idiot plants trees that close to the house).

Much cheaper and a lot of fun.

Safe? Not so much. But the only damage we ever caused was smashing a fence. It was a joint project between my neighbor and I, so we split the cost of a section of fence 50/50.

It really varies as to the difficulty, but no way am I paying $2K for something that takes me 15 minutes with my chainsaw, an old climbing rope, and my truck. You can even rent a stumpgrinder for not that much money.

Some monster tree where the limbs themselves would cause massive damage if they fell in the wrong place? Different story.
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CyclingDuo
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by CyclingDuo » Mon Apr 24, 2017 2:55 pm

White Coat Investor wrote:I've taken down about a dozen trees myself, including at least a couple that were taller than the house and planted within 3 feet of it (yea, don't get me started on what kind of an idiot plants trees that close to the house).

Much cheaper and a lot of fun.

It really varies as to the difficulty, but no way am I paying $2K for something that takes me 15 minutes with my chainsaw, an old climbing rope, and my truck. You can even rent a stumpgrinder for not that much money.
^^This!
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Earl Lemongrab
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by Earl Lemongrab » Mon Apr 24, 2017 3:12 pm

You might be able to take down a small tree by yourself, but I wouldn't try that with a large one. The maple that they cut down for me was 4-5 ft diameter at the base. It had one large limb the size of some smaller trees that extended out over the house. You couldn't even start on the limb without the right equipment to control that, let alone the huge trunk sections. Plus if with DIY you end up with a dead tree in your yard. I ended up with a hole filled with wood chips.

Tree work, other than trimming a few low branches, is not something I'll risk life and property on.
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keystone
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by keystone » Mon Apr 24, 2017 3:26 pm

dm200 wrote:If a tree is being trimmed, then you want folks who know about "tree health". if it is being removed, then the folks doing it need to know nothing about tree health - just do not drop the tree on a house :)
The problem is sometimes the lines are blurry. People often recommend getting an arborist to come by to take a look at the tree, but many times the arborist works for a tree removal company. That is a potential conflict of interest to me. In my case, I have a humongous oak tree and an arborist working for a tree removal company suggested that it be taken down and that it would cost in excess of 10K to remove. There was no way I was going to do that without getting an independent opinion, so I ended up spending $130 for an independent tree consultant who does not work for a tree removal company to inspect my tree. It was well worth it in my case.

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dm200
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by dm200 » Mon Apr 24, 2017 4:48 pm

keystone wrote:
dm200 wrote:If a tree is being trimmed, then you want folks who know about "tree health". if it is being removed, then the folks doing it need to know nothing about tree health - just do not drop the tree on a house :)
The problem is sometimes the lines are blurry. People often recommend getting an arborist to come by to take a look at the tree, but many times the arborist works for a tree removal company. That is a potential conflict of interest to me. In my case, I have a humongous oak tree and an arborist working for a tree removal company suggested that it be taken down and that it would cost in excess of 10K to remove. There was no way I was going to do that without getting an independent opinion, so I ended up spending $130 for an independent tree consultant who does not work for a tree removal company to inspect my tree. It was well worth it in my case.
Nothing "blurry" with this tree. Sooner or later, it needs to go!

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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by Wakefield1 » Mon Apr 24, 2017 5:38 pm

Sometimes opinions differ on keeping a tree-near me (but fortunately beyond the dripline!) is a massive oak that is leaning and obviously to me a hazard but the people that own the house where it is don't want it removed (I think one tree "expert" said it is O.K. and someone else who has some real world expertise remarked about how it is dangerous (lean appears to have increased slightly in the last few years)
last time a really strong wind event during the leafed out and vulnerable season came through this neighborhood was about 5 years ago and multiple trees came down putting the power off at least a couple of days and destroying at least 2 houses in my immediate vicinity (actually two wind events separated by a few months-"derecho" severe thunderstorm and Hurricane Sandy
(Landlord owned) house next door just got demolished,it sustained some damage from an oak that fell one day after I was in the back yard cutting the grass,fell during quiet and sunny conditions. Mysterious because it was a double trunked tree with problems(rot in the fork and mushrooms(but not Armillaria) popping up near the base) but I thought the other trunk was the least stable one!

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dm200
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by dm200 » Wed Apr 26, 2017 11:39 am

First estimate (reputable service I and neighbor had used for trimming: $1,850

Two more estimates (using homeadvisor.com) $1,800 and $1,300.

The $1,300 estimate company ready to do the job next week. The $1,300 company seems to be ok, and the scope of the work (remove tree and leave stump) is the same.

Any opinions on homeadvisor.com recommendations and reviews?

wvmtnbkr
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by wvmtnbkr » Wed Apr 26, 2017 12:30 pm

Your quotes sound about right for the information you provided. If you are going with the $1300 bid, ask if they can grind the stump, too. The stump will just be in the way and become an irritant over time (and possibly become a source of ant/pest infestation as it rots).

I grew up in a rural area and felled many trees and have the equipment to do it correctly. That being said, I recently hired professionals to remove four mature Bradford Pears ~50' tall and stumps ground/removed for $1200, which I considered a good price in my LCOL area. I was comfortable taking them down, but proximity to house and (new) neighbor's house, along with the bigger issue of what to do with the trees once they were down, made the decision to hire professionals easy. I had also pruned our fruit trees the week before, and was just going burn the large (8' tall by 15' diameter) pile of branches later in the spring, but they took all of that with them, too.

While in the neighborhood they also picked up two more jobs based on people seeing them at my place, and were sure to swing by and thank me again for allowing them to do the work.

Another data point, former neighbor had a large (10' circumference ~ 120' tall) sycamore in his front yard that began to rot. Unfortunately it was also adjacent to a high-traffic road, which made access difficult. Tree company removed it in about 5 hours early on a Sunday morning for ~$5k

Stephen

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Fletch
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by Fletch » Wed Apr 26, 2017 12:33 pm

$1795 to remove 30+ year old cherry tree, roughly 30 to 35 feet high and 35 to 40 feet wide. Included stump and root grinding to about 8 to 12 inches below grade, haul away all wood and chips, clean up, landscape ground, plant grass. Done by reputable company, certified arborist, that had liability and workers comp insurance and pulled all necessary permits (underground utilities in the neighborhood). Tree cutting and removal probably on the order of 15 man-hours, 3 man-hours stump grinding, 4 or 5 man-hours chip hauling and landscaping. Had to park equipment about 100 feet from tree and carry or wheelbarrow all material to there.
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Jimmie
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by Jimmie » Wed Apr 26, 2017 12:37 pm

Pear and cherry trees? You guys are killing me!

Have the tree service cut up the wood in firewood lengths and sell that wood on Craigslist to BBQ smoker people. Fruit wood is one of the best!

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dm200
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by dm200 » Wed Apr 26, 2017 12:42 pm

wvmtnbkr wrote:Your quotes sound about right for the information you provided. If you are going with the $1300 bid, ask if they can grind the stump, too. The stump will just be in the way and become an irritant over time (and possibly become a source of ant/pest infestation as it rots).
I grew up in a rural area and felled many trees and have the equipment to do it correctly. That being said, I recently hired professionals to remove four mature Bradford Pears ~50' tall and stumps ground/removed for $1200, which I considered a good price in my LCOL area. I was comfortable taking them down, but proximity to house and (new) neighbor's house, along with the bigger issue of what to do with the trees once they were down, made the decision to hire professionals easy. I had also pruned our fruit trees the week before, and was just going burn the large (8' tall by 15' diameter) pile of branches later in the spring, but they took all of that with them, too.
While in the neighborhood they also picked up two more jobs based on people seeing them at my place, and were sure to swing by and thank me again for allowing them to do the work.
Another data point, former neighbor had a large (10' circumference ~ 120' tall) sycamore in his front yard that began to rot. Unfortunately it was also adjacent to a high-traffic road, which made access difficult. Tree company removed it in about 5 hours early on a Sunday morning for ~$5k
Stephen
No, I don't think a stump will be a problem (under 1 foot). That would cost an added $550 or so.

What I just learned (called my County) is that in this state, such folks are not licensed and I need to make 100% sure they have both liability insurance and workers compensation. In the neighboring state, such folks must be "licensed"

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Fletch
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by Fletch » Wed Apr 26, 2017 1:10 pm

Jimmie wrote:Pear and cherry trees? You guys are killing me!

Have the tree service cut up the wood in firewood lengths and sell that wood on Craigslist to BBQ smoker people. Fruit wood is one of the best!
Actually, I thought of that AFTER I had the tree removed. I did not apparently measure twice and saw once before removing the tree. I heard a story from one of my friends that someone paid THEM for the tree wood and cut it down for free. :oops:
“Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the Teacher. Whoever loves money never has enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with their income. This too is meaningless.

Jimmie
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by Jimmie » Wed Apr 26, 2017 1:27 pm

Fletch wrote:
Jimmie wrote:Pear and cherry trees? You guys are killing me!

Have the tree service cut up the wood in firewood lengths and sell that wood on Craigslist to BBQ smoker people. Fruit wood is one of the best!
Actually, I thought of that AFTER I had the tree removed. I did not apparently measure twice and saw once before removing the tree. I heard a story from one of my friends that someone paid THEM for the tree wood and cut it down for free. :oops:
Last year, I cut down an apple tree in our front yard. We had a landscaper that does our spring and fall cleanups cut the trunk of the tree down and grind the stump. I cut the majority of the tree up for my smoker, but was limited by the jaw opening of my lopper chainsaw. What remained was a section probably seven feet in height.

All I wanted was those last big tree sections to split for my smoker. The landscaper "forgot" and hauled them away with the root scraps. I cried for three days...

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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by Wildebeest » Wed Apr 26, 2017 8:15 pm

In the old days I was fearless and I have a chainsaw and I would cut down any tree.

May be it is age or maybe it is common sense but the next few trees near our house looked like trouble. We had asked the landscape architect where we could get a tree guy, which would not cost us a fortune. The guy, he recommended brought his toddler over , because he was going through a divorce while he was cutting down trees and we were concerned the toddler may be cut down by one of our trees. We thought it was wrong, but it worked out.

Did we learn?

We had done okay with the tree guy but then we had a tree, which looked was dead and if it fell the way it was leaning might hit our house in the next storm. We asked for a price and he stated $ 900 and we paid. We never saw the tree guy again and when we called him, he stated "sue me".

In the next storm the tree fell and did not hit our house and I cut it up without killing myself. It all worked out ( minus the $ 900 ).

The morale: Do not use tree guys, who are going through a divorce, bring their toddler, are not licensed, insured or could not care less and definitely do not pay till they do the job.
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mags
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by mags » Wed Apr 26, 2017 9:05 pm

About 8 years ago I paid 3,800 to have 2 120 foot trees removed and stumps grinded. Seattle area. It is expensive!

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dm200
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by dm200 » Thu Apr 27, 2017 7:25 am

Wildebeest wrote:In the old days I was fearless and I have a chainsaw and I would cut down any tree.

May be it is age or maybe it is common sense but the next few trees near our house looked like trouble. We had asked the landscape architect where we could get a tree guy, which would not cost us a fortune. The guy, he recommended brought his toddler over , because he was going through a divorce while he was cutting down trees and we were concerned the toddler may be cut down by one of our trees. We thought it was wrong, but it worked out.

Did we learn?

We had done okay with the tree guy but then we had a tree, which looked was dead and if it fell the way it was leaning might hit our house in the next storm. We asked for a price and he stated $ 900 and we paid. We never saw the tree guy again and when we called him, he stated "sue me".

In the next storm the tree fell and did not hit our house and I cut it up without killing myself. It all worked out ( minus the $ 900 ).

The morale: Do not use tree guys, who are going through a divorce, bring their toddler, are not licensed, insured or could not care less and definitely do not pay till they do the job.
Yes! The agreement is that we pay upon completion of the job.

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White Coat Investor
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by White Coat Investor » Thu Apr 27, 2017 10:52 am

Earl Lemongrab wrote:You might be able to take down a small tree by yourself, but I wouldn't try that with a large one. The maple that they cut down for me was 4-5 ft diameter at the base. It had one large limb the size of some smaller trees that extended out over the house. You couldn't even start on the limb without the right equipment to control that, let alone the huge trunk sections. Plus if with DIY you end up with a dead tree in your yard. I ended up with a hole filled with wood chips.

Tree work, other than trimming a few low branches, is not something I'll risk life and property on.
Yea, my little chainsaw isn't going to do a 4 foot tree. It's not going to do a 2 foot tree. But smaller trees are a DIY project and a fun one at that.
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by m2go » Thu Apr 27, 2017 12:05 pm

dm200 wrote:It is not required to actually remove the stump, so we won't do that. Stump removal would be an ADDITIONAL $650.
This bit of information confirms that they are trying to fleece you. Tree removal seemed high, but in high cost areas such as NE, not outlandishly so. But - stump should be between 50 and 100. There's no "it's high, we need a cherry pickker, a boom, a ... whatever".

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dm200
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by dm200 » Thu Apr 27, 2017 12:11 pm

m2go wrote:
dm200 wrote:It is not required to actually remove the stump, so we won't do that. Stump removal would be an ADDITIONAL $650.
This bit of information confirms that they are trying to fleece you. Tree removal seemed high, but in high cost areas such as NE, not outlandishly so. But - stump should be between 50 and 100. There's no "it's high, we need a cherry pickker, a boom, a ... whatever".
I don't know. Seems to me that to completely dig out the stump would be quite a bit. In any event, we won't take it out.

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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by Doom&Gloom » Thu Apr 27, 2017 1:20 pm

dm200 wrote:
m2go wrote:
dm200 wrote:It is not required to actually remove the stump, so we won't do that. Stump removal would be an ADDITIONAL $650.
This bit of information confirms that they are trying to fleece you. Tree removal seemed high, but in high cost areas such as NE, not outlandishly so. But - stump should be between 50 and 100. There's no "it's high, we need a cherry pickker, a boom, a ... whatever".
I don't know. Seems to me that to completely dig out the stump would be quite a bit. In any event, we won't take it out.
I'm guessing that you have never seen a stump-grinder in action. It only takes minutes.

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Earl Lemongrab
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by Earl Lemongrab » Thu Apr 27, 2017 1:24 pm

Just like not all trees are the same, not all stumps are either. That massive maple of mine had a stump that cost $420 to grind out. They had to bring in a very large machine for that. A crabapple stump on the same job was $70. Again, I wouldn't worry about what people on a forum think are the right prices for these kind of things. Get three to four bids and you'll get an good idea for the costs.
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dm200
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by dm200 » Thu Apr 27, 2017 3:58 pm

Earl Lemongrab wrote:Just like not all trees are the same, not all stumps are either. That massive maple of mine had a stump that cost $420 to grind out. They had to bring in a very large machine for that. A crabapple stump on the same job was $70. Again, I wouldn't worry about what people on a forum think are the right prices for these kind of things. Get three to four bids and you'll get an good idea for the costs.
The stump stays.

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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by Easy Rhino » Thu Apr 27, 2017 4:01 pm

incidentally, we had a california pepper tree growing in an unloved corner of our backyard, under a power line so it was going to be trouble eventually.

Actually, it had already been cut down once, but the it resprouted suckers so vigorously it was still about 15 feet tall. I guesstimate the original trunk was under a foot thick.

Well, was having some earth moving work done and the contractor had a small backhoe anyway, so he dug out the tree roots. it was massive when we saw it. The rootball extended about 10 or 15 feet across and weighed hundreds of pounds.

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dm200
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by dm200 » Wed May 03, 2017 9:53 am

Final result: Tree gone. Took third bid of $1,300 vs $1,800 and $1,850.

Watched them do it. Guy climbed tree with chainsaw and they used ropes to make sure nothing fell on my house or neighbors. Fully cleaned up. Left stump as agreed.

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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by ArmchairArchitect » Wed May 03, 2017 9:56 am

I found a guy via craigslist that cut a bunch of tall trees the old school way (climbing by rope) for $400 total. He even stacked the wood for me.

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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by Nowizard » Wed May 03, 2017 10:01 am

$650 to remove a stump is absurd! We recently had a 42" diameter stump removed by grinding for $100. I assume you would be grinding rather than using a backhoe which is almost never necessary and that your stump is no larger than 42" in diameter.

Tim

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dm200
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Re: Removing a tree - expensive!!!

Post by dm200 » Wed May 03, 2017 10:15 am

Found this company through homeadvisor.com.

I checked with our local jurisdiction (County in Virginia) that told me that in Virginia tree removal companies are not licensed (as they must be in some other states). I was advised to verify liability insurance and workers compensation (which I did). I did not tell them of the other bids.

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