So, the pine tree over the garage has developed a noticeable lean, or the ash tree in the backyard looks like it might be infected by the Emerald Ash Borer, or the oak over the neighbour’s house has a huge dead branch in it. Time to call in a tree works company. But who do you choose, and what questions should you be asking to make sure you’re getting professional tree service and a qualified, fair quote?
We have put together the following guide to help you make the best decision possible.
Do you have liability insurance, WSIB or Equivalent?
You should never, we repeat NEVER hire a company that can’t provide proof of insurance on request. Homeowner’s insurance policies don’t usually cover contractors working on your property. Liability insurance covers you for damages resulting from contractors working on your property. WSIB covers our employees should they get hurt on the job and require medical treatment or be forced to take time off work, and shows a company cares about it’s workers. Even though we do everything in our power to ensure the safety of people and property on our job sites, tree work is incredibly dangerous as well as full of uncontrollable variables. Unfortunately, accidents do happen, so make sure you and the company you hire are covered.
Is your crew trained?
Do you use special equipment?
Every tree presents a unique set of circumstances and challenges that often requires the use specialized equipment ranging from pole pruners to skid steers, heavy cranes and bucket trucks. A tree company should not be judged solely on the equipment they use however, and just as “you can’t judge a book by it’s cover”, you can’t judge an arborist by their bucket truck. While a professional tree care company should look the part, fancy equipment is not always a marker of high quality workmanship. It’s always best to talk to your neighbours and/or ask for references from a potential contractor about past work. Also the saying “to a man with a hammer, everything is a nail” applies to tree work. Just because a company has a bucket truck or crane, does not mean it’s the best tool for your specific job. Talk with your potential tree contractor about their removal plan. A skilled tree worker will be able to walk you through exactly what they are going to do, what equipment they are going to use, and why that’s the best choice for your job.