How to Evaluate a Tree Service Company
Selecting a tree service company doesn't have to be difficult if you follow some evaluation criteria when researching them. Utilize the following questions when doing your research and you will be certain to select a quality, professional, and even affordable tree service company in Lincoln, NE.
Are They Insured and Licensed?
Each company you consider should be licensed by the state of Nebraska. Now, this isn't necessarily an assurance they are a quality company, but it does imply they are serious enough to register their business with the state. Every tree care company should be insured with two different types of policies: worker's compensation and liability coverage. Worker's compensation protects you as the property owner should one of their employees sustain an injury while working on your property. If the company does not carry worker's compensation, then you might be liable to cover the injury under your homeowner's policy. Additionally, ever professional tree contractor should also hold liability insurance to protect their customers from the potential of property damage during the course of the job. Always ask to see both policies when evaluating the company.
Are They Credentialed?
The tree care industry has a number of organizations that provide credentials, certifications, and continuing education to tree service companies and their employees. These organizations include the International Society of Arborists and the Tree Care Industry Association. Ask each tree contractor about their membership and participation in these organizations. You can also check these organization's websites for a member's list.
Do They Provide a Written Estimate?
Never select a tree care company based on a verbal estimate alone. You will potentially set yourself up for a price escalation after the work is complete. Good tree service companies will always provide you with a written estimate detailing not only the price but the service(s) to be performed. A written estimate is also necessary to compare competing bids.
Did You Fairly Compare the Estimates?
When comparing quotes, make sure you are comparing apples-to-apples. There may be differences in the scope of what was quoted so you don't want to make the mistake of selecting a company that did not bid the job exactly as you wanted it done.
Did You Check References and Online Reviews?
The best source for information about past performance is from recent customers. Ask each company for 3 references that are no older than three months - anything older may not reflect current business operations. Also, ask family and friends who they have used in the past. Lastly, check online reviews, such as with Google, Yelp, and the BBB. While these aren't the best sources for references, they will provide you with an overall assessment of each company.
If you follow these five criteria when research tree service companies, you will be certain to select a high-quality company. Don't make the mistake of taking short-cuts when selecting a contractor. Tree work can be expensive and dangerous, so it is imperative to utilize the services of a professional company. Regardless of your service needs, large tree removal or just a little tree trimming, always utilize this approach when selecting a tree care company.
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Owner of Lincoln Tree Service