How to Choose the Right Tree Removal Service for Your Landscape

Even the most skilled landscaping “do-it-yourselfers” know when to call in the professionals. Consider this scenario: The morning after a particularly rough storm you are sitting in your kitchen with a hot cup of coffee. Your gaze floats to your perfectly manicured flower garden, and as soon as your eyes hit the buds, you scream. A massive tree branch has fallen right on top of your beautiful roses.

Infuriating, yes, but it does happen. Anything from storms to simple overgrowth can turn this hypothetical scenario into a grim reality. To prevent such an occurrence, inspect your trees routinely for ominous-looking branches. If you find any, calling a tree removal service is the safest way to remove the offending limbs.

Unfortunately, many people have trouble knowing what to look for when hiring a tree removal company. If you follow a few simple tips, however, you will find technicians you can trust to get the problem under control.

Do Your Homework before You Hire

It’s important to shop around before settling on a tree removal service. Ask people you trust for recommendations. In the case of a bad storm, chat with neighbors who also had tree limb damage to find out which company they are using to clean up the mess.

If you need a different route, the Internet is your one-stop resource. We live in an age of endless information, which means that service providers have much greater accountability due to public customer reviews. Create a short list of tree removal companies in your area and search for each one by name. Look for any public Better Business Bureau reports or negative reviews on websites. When you find a couple of trustworthy companies, dig a little deeper into the research.

Cover Your Bases by Checking Credentials

Never hire a tree service that demands you pay in advance. Choose a service with references you can independently verify, and opt for a company that offers free estimates before they begin their work. If the estimate sounds ridiculously high, get a second estimate from a competing company to verify that the quoted amount is legitimate.

A written contract, licensure, and proper insurance coverage are “must-haves” for the tree removal service you choose to hire. Check for licensure and request to sign a written contract with a clear description of the job to be performed along with the quote for the work. In addition, tree removal work is very risky, so ensure the company carries good liability insurance to protect yourself, the workers, and your property.

Finally, ask the tree removal service about the method used to ascend the tree. Stay away from companies that employ climbing spikes. These can dig into the cambium of your tree and damage it severely – sometimes beyond repair. The company you choose should ascend trees using an aerial lift or ropes to protect the trees from damage.

Selecting the right company for your tree limb removal job will ensure you have a good experience and that your tree is removed quickly, efficiently, and most importantly – safely.

Accent Lighting to Make Your Landscape Stand Out

Want to know why your neighbor’s yard attracts your attention every time you pass it? Most likely, it’s because of the accent lighting. Accent lighting illuminates and beautifies landscapes with its subtle glow and soft hues. It highlights the best areas and provides an atmosphere to which onlookers gravitate.

Your exterior lighting creates the atmosphere for your landscape. Once the sun fades and the moon glows in the night sky, accent lights will make your yard come alive. Your properly lit landscape can become the envy of your neighbors and the talk of the town. And thankfully, it won’t cost you an arm and a leg to get the look you want.

Beauty

There are many reasons to add accent lights to your landscape and beauty is one of the top. Is there a tree, fountain, pond, or an object that brings the entire landscape together? It’s important to direct the accent lights toward the special features of the garden so people can see them when the sun goes down. Even a beautiful rose garden can be the subject of illumination. Be careful not to accent the entire landscape, though. Sometimes too much is a recipe for disaster. If you accent too many features, it will confuse the eye and take the focus away from the objects you are highlighting. Keep it simple and make sure your accent lights are positioned to add, and not distract.

Safety

Accent lighting is also very helpful for safety and security reasons. In fact, the lights can serve a dual purpose if they are positioned correctly. Lighting that flanks the driveway will look beautiful and also provide illumination at night for walkers. Other safety lights will illuminate the area enough to ward off intruders since most thieves prefer to work in dark places.

Consider accent lights for the areas where people walk and congregate. Steps, walkways, paths, driveways, decks and patios are all ideal locations for a little accent lighting to keep the yard safe and secure.

Types

Landscape lighting comes in a variety of types but generally homeowners choose from LED, solar and low-voltage. All offer an inexpensive alternative to traditional lighting. Solar lights will be the easiest to install because there are no wires.

Home Value

Accent lighting will not only beautify your landscape, but it will also add value to your home. Landscaped yards can add thousands of dollars to your home’s sale price and set you apart from the competition in your neighborhood. Curb appeal is one of the top criteria on buyers’ minds and a beautiful landscaped space sets the stage for a great home tour. When buyers see a manicured lawn with attention to detail, they automatically assume you gave the same level of consideration to the inside of the home. They will feel settled as a result and if they like the home, a sale may be imminent.

How to Gain Monetary Benefits from a Beautifully Landscaped Home

Does your landscape design garner “ooohs” and “aahhhs” by all who grace its presence? If so, you may have already added significant value to your home. The value of a home is directly connected to its outdoor space as much as it is to its indoor living. In fact, in some buyers’ minds the curb appeal is even more important because it sets the stage for the first impression. If the first impression is less than favorable, not even a grand indoor environment may be enough to sway an unfavorable opinion.

We all know a beautiful landscape enhances a home, but what about a yard that is falling apart and unmaintained? It’s one thing to have a status quo curb appeal that is unappealing, but neat. But, it’s an entirely different animal to have a messy landscape that needs repairs and some TLC. In this case, your house will be valued lower than your neighbors even if your home is similar in size. And with a poorly maintained front lawn, no buyer will purchase your home unless you sell it for a steal.

Redesign

If you maintain your landscape but it is mundane and lifeless, add some key features to breathe life into it. A patio, porch or even an outdoor kitchen will increase the value of your home. If your budget is small, plant manicured shrubs or flowers near walkways, driveways, and around the perimeter of your home to add a little personality. A few trees will also add a touch of style to your home and make the entryway welcoming and one to remember.

Potential home buyers love outdoor spaces that provide the perfect backdrop for entertaining. They love BBQ’s, kitchens with beautiful countertops, patios, and fire pits. Any upgrades will enhance the home and make it more attractive to a buyer which increases the home’s value.

Be careful, though, not to spend more money than your location allows. If you spend a lot of money on high-end finishes but you live in a middle-class neighborhood, you may never get that money back because your neighborhood will determine the bulk of your home’s value. Upgrade your landscape but use the right materials for your location so you do not waste any money.

Repairs

If your landscape and front entrance needs repairs, do not redesign until you clean it up. Look for chipped paint on doorways and stairs, excessive dirt accumulation, broken fences, and any other feature that is in less-than-ideal condition. Once the repairs are complete, remove any shrub overgrowth and weed infestation. Clean the flower beds and prune trees that are blocking nice features. This clean slate will be ready for some redesign so it can be refreshed and add value to your home.

Repair first and redesign second to give your home landscape the tender loving care it deserves. If your budget is small, plan your projects over time and put a little money aside every month. Over time you will see the fruit of your labor and before long you will have that house that receives the accolades of onlookers passing by.