Your trees have so much value!
Your trees are assets and provide many benefits including increased property value, decreased energy bills, improved water quality, protection from extreme temperatures, and perhaps the best benefit of all – they have a calming effect after just five minutes!
Trees also block and absorb sound, so if you live on a busy street or highway you are benefiting! Given the many benefits, its imperative we take care of them as they take care of us for generations to come – and this is why it’s also important to hire a reputable Certified Arborist!
What is a Certified Arborist?
A Certified Arborist specializes in the care of individual trees and takes great care and consideration when assessing individual tree needs. Much like a medical specialist, a Certified Arborist will look for the cause of the issue and provide solutions to prevent problems and ultimately protect the life of the tree.
They are knowledgeable about the needs of trees, and are trained and equipped to provide proper care. Proper tree care is an investment that can lead to substantial returns as mentioned above. Poorly maintained trees can become a significant liability, especially large trees!
Certified Arborists are individuals who have have successfully passed a comprehensive exam developed and administered by the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA). They must also show a measurable level of knowledge in the art and science of tree care through required hands-on experience. The ISA is the premier worldwide network of professional arborists actively engaged in educational and professional development of the tree care industry.
Additionally, Certified Arborists must submit proof of continuing education each year to maintain their certification, keeping them up to date with the latest developments and techniques in arboriculture. Maintaining certification also requires the individual to adhere to a code of ethics established for ISA Certified Arborists. The ISA certification is accredited by the American National Standards Institute, meeting and exceeding ISO 17024.
Top 7 Tips in choosing the best Arborist for your trees
- Ask for proof of insurance! We’ve heard many stories of customers being ripped off or running into major liability issues with tree companies that don’t have insurance or ask for money up front! A reputable arborist will have proof of insurance and workers compensation. They also typically invoice you AFTER completion to ensure you are completely satisfied.
- Check for certification! If they say they’re qualified, ask to see proof or have them provide you with a certification ID. ISA Certified Arborists are experienced professionals who have passed examinations covering all aspects of tree care, and carry ID with them at all times. Check ISA certification here.
- Are they members of professional affiliated organizations? There are several organizations within the arboriculture industry including the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA), Tree Care Industry Association (TCIA), American Society of Consulting Arborists (ASCA), in addition to local chapters. The Arborist you select should be a member of at least one of these organizations demonstrating expertise and passion in their field.
- Ask for references! Third party references from existing customers and/or suppliers that have done business with your chosen Arborist can help your decision process. Alternatively, check websites and social media pages such as Facebook – often customer testimonials are published online.
- Don’t be lured by the cheapest bid! Many have fallen into this trap. The lowest bidder can often be the one without insurance or appropriate credentials. Be sure to examine written specifications of the work to be done in terms of skill, professionalism, and overall experience.
- Look for good practices! Arborists will perform only industry-accepted techniques, for example, NOT topping a tree! If you get this kind of a recommendation, choose to shop elsewhere. Other red flags include removing excessive amounts of live wood, removing or disfiguring trees with no due cause or using spikes on trees that are not destined for removal.
- Get more than one estimate! Unless you know, trust and are familiar with the Arborist, take your time and get more than one bid. Some charge for their time to do a bid but either way, you can feel confident you’re getting the best deal.
Best of all, be an informed customer and educate yourself about some of the basic principles of tree care. Trees deserve our love and attention and provide so many benefits to our community!