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Tree Removal Costs

by | Sep 11, 2020 | Uncategorized

Removing a tree in Philadelphia costs between $400 and $1200 with most property owners spending an average of $750. Extreme tree removals, however, can hit $2000 with low-end small trees costing only $200.

You will pay $8 to $15 per foot, with the cost range coming from cost factors like job complexity and accessibility. To give you a better idea of the costs to expect, we will take you through the major factors that usually affect the tree removal cost.

Factors Affecting the Tree Removal Cost in Philadelphia

1. Tree Size

When we talk about tree size, we are referring to both tree height and diameter. When handling tree removal for taller trees, the area under risk is much bigger. Also, the fact that most tall trees are heavier means that they need bigger machines to handle them.

At its most basic, tree removal involves sawing through the tree’s stem. If a tree has a bigger stem diameter, more time will be needed to bring it down. Below, we have outlined the tree removal costs to expect for trees of varying sizes:

Small Tree Removal Cost

For a tree to be classified in the small tree category, its height has to be below 30 feet. Many small trees can be removed within a couple of hours. This makes their removal cost incredibly low, with most costing $150 – $400. In Philadelphia, some of the trees that fall in the small category include:

  • Japanese maple
  • Magnolia
  • Dogwood
  • California juniper

Medium Tree Removal Cost

Mid-size trees have a height of between 30 and 60 feet. Their removal generally ranges from $450 to $700.

Medium trees typically have bigger trunk diameters, generally measuring 15 to 19 inches. They require slightly more labor than the small trees, but they can be removed in a day, generally requiring 4 to 8 hours of work. In Philadelphia, trees that fit in the medium-size category include:

  • Smaller varieties of the red oak
  • Crab apple
  • Copper wood
  • Red maple

Large Tree Removal Cost

Large trees have heights of between 60 and 100 feet. Their stem diameter is usually greater than 20 inches. Typically, removing large trees is generally a full-day project, and depending on the crew, it can take multiple days. This generally places the removal cost at $900 to $1,200. In Philadelphia, large trees include:

  • Larger varieties of the red oak
  • Conifer
  • Sycamore
  • Maple

Very Large Tree Removal Cost

Trees in this category have a height of more than 100 feet. The trees tend to have diameters of more than 24 inches and often require multiple days to remove. To remove very large trees, you will have to be prepared with $1,300 to $2,000. Examples of very large trees include:

  • Eucalyptus
  • Palm
  • Sequoia

2. Crane-Assisted Removal

Trees in complicated situations – for example, a tree leaning over your house or powerlines – need a crane for their removal to go over without problems. The crane will help bring the tree down slowly or change where the tree falls.

The cost of renting a crane is generally charged separately. In Philadelphia, hiring cranes cost $200 to $600 per day plus the operator’s fee of $50 to $100.

Let’s assume you are being charged $2000 to remove a 150 feet white pine without a crane. If a crane is needed and you manage to get it at a total cost of $500, the total cost of removing the white pine will be $2000 (the quoted tree removal cost) + $500 (the cost of renting a crane) = $2,500.

3. Tree Species

Tree type impacts the tree removal cost. Some trees grow tall enough to fall into different sizes for cost estimations, so the details below should make it much easier for you to understand the cost to expect:

Magnolia Tree Removal Cost

Most magnolia trees are small and their removal can be completed in one or two hours when working with a professional crew. The removal cost for the tree falls between $375 and $500, depending on how complicated the job is.

Oak Tree Removal Cost

Oak trees reach heights of approximately 60 to 100 feet. To remove an oak tree with a height of about 60 feet, you may be charged $200 to $800. Oak trees with a height of close to 100 feet will cost $800 to $1000 to remove.

Sycamore Tree Removal Cost

Sycamores mature at medium height, meaning they are generally 30 to 60 feet tall. To remove sycamores from your properties, you will spend between $600 and $900.

Pine Tree Removal Cost

Removing pine trees is generally simple when working with small heights. The complications increase if the tree has been around for years and has managed to reach heights of more than 80 feet. On average, you should expect to be charged between $200 and $1500 to get rid of pine trees.

Palm Tree Removal Cost

The cost of removing palm trees depends on how tall the tree is. Small palms can be removed at $250 to $600, while the bigger trees may require you to spend in the upwards of $1,200.

4. Tree Condition

Numerous pre-existing conditions can make tree removal more complicated. Below, we have outlined some of the conditions:

  • Cavities and decays – These are an indicator that your tree’s structural stability is compromised and there is a chance the tree might fall. To avoid injuries or damages that could result if the tree gets out of control during removal, stabilization may be needed.
  • Weak branches – If branches on your tree may detach and fall on those removing your tree, tree pruning may need to be conducted ahead of tree removal.
  • Significant leans – A tree could be leaning in the direction its not supposed to fall. In such a case, tree removal professionals will have to work to rectify the lean.
  • Multiple trunks – If the two trunks are weakly attached to the main trunk, they may need to be removed separately. This can result in more work than anticipated.

Fallen Tree Removal

Fallen trees are generally easier to remove considering that the work and effort needed is minimal. Most tree service experts charge $75 to $150 to remove fallen trees.

Trees lying on important utilities, however, may have a higher removal cost. This is because more work will be needed to lift the trees off the utilities without causing further damage.

Dead Tree Removal

Getting rid of dead trees is essential to the entire property. It will be less expensive since dead weigh less. Since the tree is already dead, no pruning is needed. Depending on how hard the tree’s wood is and the exact state of the tree, you should expect dead tree removal to cost between $75 and $400.

5. Accessibility

Trees surrounded by important structures have minimal accessibility. Also, compared to trees in open spaces, their removal is generally more complicated and may take more time.

Trees next to powerlines have to be brought down foot by foot from the top – cutting the tree in small portions protects the utility lines. All this increases the tree removal cost.

6. Additional Costs

Some of the services needed during tree removal are not covered by the quoted cost. For the professional to handle the services, you may have to pay additional money:

Tree Chipping

Chipping is often used to get rid of the waste generated by tree removal. If you would like to have chipping conducted on-site, you may need to pay $50 to $100.

Wood Splitting Service

This service allows homeowners to use the wood generated as firewood. Depending on the tree size and the amount of work needed, you may spend about $100 on the splitting.

Emergency Tree Service

In addition to the normal tree removal cost, those who need emergency tree removal may spend up to 10% more for the emergency and inconvenience charges. Some emergencies, however, are covered by the insurance company – before paying out of your pocket, be sure to call your home insurer.

Travel Expenses

Some tree service providers may need to travel further to reach your home, thus may charge you a travel fee. Most tree experts charge $0.5 per mile. However, the cost may add up to reach between $50 and $200.

Permits and Licenses

In most areas, permits are required for trees with a height of more than 10 feet. Some trees may have varying requirements, but permits are generally compulsory. Most property owners spend an average of $60 to $150 on permits.

Stump Removal Cost

Stumps turn into hazards over time. When they get buried under overgrowth, they may keep destroying your lawn maintenance equipment or causing injuries. To get rid of a tree stump, the following costs apply:

  • Per stump price – You may be charged $150 to remove the first stump. For the additional stumps, you may spend $50 on each.
  • Diameter cost – Professionals charge $2 to $3 per diameter inch. Most, however, will have a minimum charge of $100.
  • Per hour cost – When removing stumps, professionals charge $150 per hour.
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