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Would you charge a neighbor for limb removal

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by basod, Sep 17, 2012.

  1. basod

    basod Minister of Fire

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    Well word of mouth travels. I've cut up and cleaned up a few trees that had fallen on on of my neighbors property.

    So I get a call from the woman across the street asking if I would come cut up some "firewood" from the side of her house.
    I thought she was talking about the small rotten oak limbs in the front yard, but its about a 10" limb snapped off and still hanging about 10' from the ground red oak limb.

    I don't know these folks, and they just recntly listed their house and have a "pending offer" stamp on the sign within a month of listing.
    When I glanced at the limb it looks like more work than wood worth to me, should I offer a price on it or do the neighborly thing and just cut it?
    Starting a tree service has been in the back of my mind for sometime now

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  2. gmule

    gmule Feeling the Heat

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    I would probably cut it for free. Sometimes it feels good to do something nice for someone.
    Backwoods Savage likes this.
  3. red oak

    red oak Minister of Fire

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    What he said
  4. Jack Straw

    Jack Straw Minister of Fire

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    "No good deed goes unpunished"............I just have a bad feeling about this. She lives across the street and you don't know her?
  5. Woody Stover

    Woody Stover Minister of Fire

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    And you get some Oak! It would be good practice for your fledgling tree business...if you don't kill yourself. ==c Maybe they will mention to the buyer that you know how to cut trees...
  6. Shadow&Flame

    Shadow&Flame Minister of Fire

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    This would be a tough call for me. Not knowing the people and them selling the house would just scream trying to get work done for free. Its also on you if anything goes wrong.... Very tough call...
  7. weatherguy

    weatherguy Minister of Fire

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    I would do it for free, maybe she'll offer you something for your troubles ;)
  8. seige101

    seige101 Minister of Fire

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    Since the house if for sale i would charge a reasonable price for it.
  9. chvymn99

    chvymn99 Minister of Fire

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    Just explain to her the complexity of the removal, compared to your previous removals. She'll either understand or not, but look out for yourself first.
    Thistle likes this.
  10. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    I tend to do the neighborly thing . . . it's in my nature.
  11. Bocefus78

    Bocefus78 Minister of Fire

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    I agree totally! It's very possible that the new buyer wants it done, and wrote that into the purchase agreement or it came up on an inspection/ insp.response. So basically the sale of their home may very well depend on this limb being removed. Not to mention, she isn't going to be your neighbor for long and you still don't know her. If you have been thinking of a tree biz, then you should already know that liability comes with a price. Feel free to charge away. Have you priced commercial liabilty insurance????

    BTW, my answer may have been different if you had a relationship with them already.
    Shadow&Flame likes this.
  12. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    It depends. Easy or hard. Liability or little liability. I have even told my own sister - "I ain't doing that" when she pointed to a huge old (and very dead, read: widow maker) maple.

    If it is a piece of cake, I would just do it. Not easy? You make the call.
    Shadow&Flame and pen like this.
  13. Stegman

    Stegman Feeling the Heat

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    Consider me among the cynical. If she wasn't moving, I'd probably do it. But that fact that she's only getting to know you now, when she wants a limb cut before moving, smacks of someone wanting something for nothing. How long have you two been neighbors?
    daveswoodhauler likes this.
  14. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    You say it is from the side of her house. Is there any chance of this limb falling onto the home? Then don't touch it.
  15. ScotO

    ScotO Guest

    if its a simple removal (involving no risk as far as property or life is concerned), and if you know what you are doing, I would do it for free. But that being said, I do tree removal on the side and it doesn't take long to find out that alot of people want stuff done for free or next to nothing, and there is a lot of responsibility in removing trees. On my jobs, I give people my bottom line price right up front (no room for haggling, its take it or leave it), my prices are always fair. Just use your head and your better judgement when doing the work. It can be rewarding, but it can also be dangerous.
    Backwoods Savage likes this.
  16. TimJ

    TimJ Minister of Fire

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    Basod, you already knew the answer.
    Bocefus78 said it very well
  17. Eric Schaefer

    Eric Schaefer New Member

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    Well if you don't know them, and they're moving. I'd say in a sense the neighborly thing is sorta out the window. But perhaps if you do it for free, they'll relay the info to the buyers, and if they need something, they'll call you for work? Perhaps if nothing else, have them pay for some gas and bar oil. $20? Either way you still get heat.

    And in a month I'm headed to Arkansas, meet me there and we'll start a business ;)
  18. basod

    basod Minister of Fire

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    Thanks for the input guys.
    The neighbor in this case is across the street from the peoples trees that I've cleaned in the past - free of charge, primo wood easy to get to.
    Both of these neighbors are elderly(not disabled) but she's selling the house due to her husband's evolving alzheimers.
    And when I say neighbors (I have 12acres) most everyone has atleast 5-8 around me so its like 1/4mi away neighbor

    The limb is in no way going to damage any property. It's just one of those where she calls out of the blue(got info from people across the street) and inquires about me burning wood and offers this wood.
    For the record I've always persued the trees I've cut for someone else - so I was skepitical of this offer, assuming she wants something for nothing.

    I'm going to give her an offer, we'll see what happens.
    ScotO likes this.
  19. ScotO

    ScotO Guest

    Tell her 50 to 75 bucks. Explain to her it's oak, you ain't gonna be able to burn it for years! Your giving her a deal, and it'll make you happy as well.
    basod likes this.
  20. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    For a branch and for an old person with an ailing husband? You guys are a tough nut to crack.
  21. bogydave

    bogydave Minister of Fire

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    +1
    Backwoods Savage likes this.
  22. basod

    basod Minister of Fire

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    That's somewhat why i posed the question.
    I always help out neighbors - knowing they'd probably reciprocate in the future. But with them moving, assuming there is some condition in the contract etc, they stand to gain financially and I'll never be reciprocated - make sense?
  23. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    I don't keep score.
    milleo, rideau, Shadow&Flame and 6 others like this.
  24. bogydave

    bogydave Minister of Fire

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    Well said ;)
  25. ScotO

    ScotO Guest

    Chit, I didn't see the ailing part. Must of skimmed over ether post. In that case, do it for free bro........
    milleo and Backwoods Savage like this.

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