In an ideal world all tree surgeons and arboriculture services would do the same job. They don’t. We don’t live in an ideal world so the trick is to make sure you work with a reputable tree service company in the first place. It’ll avoid costly, illegal and potentially dangerous mistakes so that you can really start to focus on how nice your garden will look.
So where do you start when you ask that question how do I find a tree surgeon?
We’ve compiled a list of 4 things to look for before you book. This list will help you understand the difference between a ‘rogue trader’ and a fully qualified tree company. It’ll help you avoid the costly mistake of inviting an incompetent trader onto your property.
4 things to look for in a tree surgeon, before you book
1. Tree Surgery Advertising
This is often the first place to start weeding out the dangerous and untrained operators. Check these things:
- A tree surgeon or tree service flyer. A flyer through the door from a rogue trader is unlikely to have a business address printed on it. That’s because they prefer to take your money and make it impossible for you to contact them.
- A website. It’s really easy to see if a tree surgery business is genuine with real satisfied customers. The company website should also tell you the address of where the business is located. Rogue traders are rarely proud of what they do so they never publish details.
2. Professional and Public Liability insurance for Tree Surgeons
Like most professional trades, (think gas fitters, welders etc) tree surgery training is built around competence based certifications: tree knowledge, working at heights, working with powerful specialist equipment like stump grinders, chippers, chainsaws. Tree surgery training includes in depth knowledge of climbing equipment, health and safety and protection of the public.
These qualifications are what insurers of tree surgeons insist upon. So, evidence of professional and public liability insurance is a good place to start when considering who to work with. Some companies make this information public – like this insurance certificate here – to save you asking to see it before you use them.
Like unqualified gas fitters or welders the damage caused by untrained tree surgeons is limitless and a little scary.
3. Qualifications for Tree Surgery
What qualifications should a tree surgeon have? Owning a chain saw does not qualify anyone to tackle a tree job. Formal training and considerable experience are the qualifications to consider when you look for a tree surgeon.
Look for NPTC accreditation and a statement that work is carried out to Health and Safety Executive Guidelines and within Environmental Restrictions.
(Note most tree surgeon insurance and home insurance is invalid if the operative is not qualified for the job.)
4. Satisfied Tree Surgery Customers
Have they got any? The easiest place to check this is on the testimonial page of the tree surgery business website (This is really useful because rogue traders don’t like any public record of the work they’ve ‘done’).
So, when you’re looking for a tree surgeon always ask these 4 questions:
- How do they advertise? Do they have a reputable and convincing website with real customer testimonials? What’s the business registered address?
- Are they insured tree surgeons? Where’s the evidence?
- Are they qualified tree surgeons?
- Where is the photographic evidence or testimonials from satisfied customers?
Final tip: BE SAFE
Have you watched a gang of cowboys doing some ‘tree work’ with no safety equipment for the head, eye, or ears and no fall or cut protection? If they’re working next door with your neighbour and they knock on your door to drum up more business – don’t open it!
“ clients engaging contractors to undertake tree work need to carefully check they have the necessary skill and competence. Tree work is hazardous; to be done safely it requires properly trained and experienced people… “
Health and Safety Executive. UK.
By now you know we have a website and are competent in all of the above which should reassure you. If you’d like to get in touch for a quote you can contact us here. We also don’t mind you leaning over the fence and asking us to come round for a quote – we’re qualified professionals!