In Buffalo, trees are planted as ornaments, improving the aesthetic appeal – and hence, the overall value – on commercial and residential properties. However, for trees to help these properties maintain the highest value, they need regular tree trimming. While most homeowners are aware of this fact, not knowing the tree trimming cost to expect generally keeps homeowners from investing in professional tree trimming.
Different trees will generally have varying trimming costs. The best way to get the exact trimming cost is to ask for a valuation from tree trimming experts.
This, however, does not mean that you cannot estimate the amount you should expect to spend on a trimming project. By discussing the factors affecting the tree trimming cost, it should be much easier for you to plan your trimming budget.
The Average Cost of Trimming a Tree in Buffalo
Professional tree trimmers in Buffalo charge an average of $80 to $350 to trim one tree. For a medium-sized, non-risky tree, professionals may charge you $150. However, if the same tree is dealing with a pest-infestation, has a disease, or is hazardous, the cost may increase to $250.
The tree trimming cost for bigger trees is generally higher, with most tree trimmers charging $300 – $1000. If your big tree is inaccessible – meaning that a bucket truck cannot be used – the tree trimming cost may increase by 30% to 40%.
Factors Affecting the Tree Trimming Cost in Buffalo
1. Tree Height
If you have tall trees on your property, you should expect your trimming cost to be higher than that of a neighbor with smaller trees. This is understandable considering that taller trees are riskier to work on – if a branch falls from the top of the tree, it could do more harm than if the same branch fell from a smaller tree.
When working on a tree taller than 100 feet, tree trimmers will need more complicated gear to reach the tree crown, unlike when working on a tree with a height of just 30 feet. Taller trees tend to have bigger crowns and bigger branches – for this reason, the trees need more time to trim.
Below, we have outlined the cost estimates for trees of varying heights:
- Below 30 feet – Trees shorter than 30 feet have the lowest tree trimming cost. Professionals charge $80 – $300 to trim them.
- 30 to 60 feet – Trees fitting in this height range are classified in the medium-size category. These trees have a tree trimming cost between $150 and $875.
- Over 60 feet – Tree trimmers classify these trees in the large tree category. To trim these trees, you will need to have $300 to $1000 set aside.
In Buffalo, trees are generally planted next to houses, fences, and utility lines. This generally benefits the owners with shade and cleaner air.
However, the fact that these trees are near important structures generally increases the amount of money spent on trimming. This is because branches cannot be allowed to just fly off to the ground – if the branches drop freely from the tree crown, property owners may end up with a lot of property damages.
The tree trimmers are often forced to tie the branches they need to cut with topes and then bring them down slowly, taking all the necessary precautions to avoid putting them on crucial structures. This takes more time.
Also, most tree trimmers nowadays use bucket trucks to make the trimming job simpler. However, for the bucket truck to be used, enough space has to be available under the tree. If the tree is inaccessible with the bucket truck, a professional will have to climb the tree manually, meaning more time and effort will be required.
If a bucket truck can be used to trim an 80-foot oak tree, you may spend $1000 on the procedure. However, if someone needs to climb the tree manually due to inaccessibility, your price may go up 30% to 40% – this means that you will spend $1,300 – $1,400.
3. Tree Health and Stability
Tree health generally has a direct effect on tree stability, with most health problems making trees weaker over time. When handling trimming for trees with instability issues, more safety tools are required to eliminate the possibility of falling and suffering significant injuries.
Other factors, for example, a lightning strike or a recent storm, could make the tree susceptible to falling. If the tree might fall on a nearby house, or its branches may fall on a busy road, stabilization mechanisms may have to be used to increase its safety. For example, professionals may decide to cable the tree during or after trimming. While this will result in a higher tree trimming cost, it will make the tree safer and also increase its ability to heal itself.
Some of the health and stability issues that could increase the tree trimming cost include:
- Fungi – Fungi consume the tree nutrients. If not eliminated quickly, it can deplete all the important nutrients, weakening the tree over time and compromising the structural stability.
- Large cracks – Moist cracks indicate that your tree is dealing with internal decay. Unless this problem is taken care of immediately, the tree may end up dying. And since its stability is already compromised, the chances of the tree falling are generally high.
- Weather damage – In Buffalo, trees often suffer damage from strong winds, hail, frost, storms, and dry spells. These often leave the roots – which are the tree’s anchor points – compromised. Also, things like heavy winds could break branches and leave them on the verge of falling and causing injuries and damage.
- Pests – Pests can eat through the branches or the tree trunk, weakening the entire tree. This will leave your tree at the verge of dropping branches on your property. If the pests attack the tree trunk, they may increase the possibility of the tree falling on your home.
Restoring a tree’s health takes the intervention of an arborist. The arborist will inspect the tree and determine the health complication bothering it. The professional will also advise you on the medications to use to restore the tree’s health. The cost of the arborist services – and the medications and/or pesticides you end up purchasing – could increase the tree trimming cost by $50 to $500.
4. Travel Fees
If the tree trimmers you decide to work with have to travel a significant distance to get to your home, you may end up spending some money on their transport. In Buffalo, most professionals charge a travel fee of $0.5 per mile. However, some tree trimmers charge a fixed rate of between $50 ad $200, depending on the number of hours they spend on the road.
It is, however, worth noting that you can easily avoid the travel fee by working with professionals nearest your home. Tree trimmers have a service zone in which they operate without charging the travel fee.
5. Number of Trees
When handling the trimming for one tree, the amount of money charged by tree trimmers is higher than when they are trimming several trees. The higher tree trimming cost is a result of a wide range of fixed costs, including the travel costs, the overhead costs, and the cost of getting permits and licenses.
If you would like to trim one 30-foot tree, you may end up paying $150. However, if you plan to trim ten 30-foot trees, your total price may add up to $1000. This means that you end up paying $50 less on each tree.
DIY Tree Trimming
DIY trimming is a good idea for homeowners with small trees planted away from important structures and utility lines. This option, however, is not ideal for people with big trees or trees growing next to houses, powerlines, or roads – this is because the risk of injury and property damage is too high and the cost of property repairs and/or treatment costs may be higher than the cost of hiring tree trimmers.
If you would like to handle DIY tree trimming, the tips outlined below should help you achieve good results:
Remove Branches with V-Shaped Angles
The angle formed by the tree branch and the tree trunk generally affects how strong a tree branch is. In most cases, branches forming a V-angle are weak – this makes them perfect for removal. Branches forming a strong U-shaped angle should be left on the tree.
Branches with a diameter of below 5 cm are safe to remove. However, as the branch size increases, removal becomes less ideal. If your branches have a diameter of 10+ cm, you should avoid removing these branches from your tree.
Wait for the Dormant Stage
Trimming your tree during the dormant stage allows the tree owners to remove the right branches from the tree. Also, since the tree is not growing actively, the tree trimmers avoid damaging the buds.
Sanitize Your Tools
After trimming one tree, you should sanitize your tools before moving on to the next tree. This will help you avoid spreading disease-causing organisms from one tree to the other.