This has to be by far one of the most common questions I get here at GoTreeQuotes, and I have noticed a lot of false information being circulated online so I thought I would clear up the facts.

Getting a tree removed free of charge is possible but in rare cases. Most of the time you will need to pay for your tree to be removed.

Palm trees are an exception. If you have a sort after palm species, companies will actually pay you to come and remove it.

is free tree removal possible

Getting a tree removed for nothing is very rare but is possible if you have a desirable tree like some pine trees or palms.

Regular tree services will not remove the tree for the firewood. It is not worth their time.

They would need a property to store timber for trees for 2 years to dry it, then they need to split the timber and deliver it for a fee.

Firewood along with garden mulch is a side business for tree companies and to be fair this costs them money so their margins are minimal.

If you would like a tree company to get rid of a pine tree for free, but you don’t live in a zip code that has any landscaping service nearby, you can try to negotiate a reduced rate for the lumber for milling for firewood.

pile of firewood

Do lumber companies cut down trees for free?

In short, Lumber companies get contracted by the owner of a tree/ timber plantation to cut the trees down for a price.

After the owner of the trees pays for the lumber company for processing the timber, they make a profit by selling the timber to other companies who turn it into furniture, floorboards, and other timber products.

 

What could work?

If you were to find a local lumber company that was interested enough in your trees for its timber, then it is feasible that they would come out and remove them in exchange for the timber.

The catch is you would need to be living on a largish property with god access and the timber could need to be desirable.

 

Highly sort after timber
Western Red Ceder – Western Red Ceder
Mahogany – Swietenia Mahagoni
Rosewood – Dalbergia species
Oak – Quercus
Ash – Fraxinus
Black cherry – Prunus serotina
Kingwood – Dalbergia Cearensis

 

Other desirable timbers are Tulipwood, Cocobolo, African blackwood, Bombay blackwood.

western red ceder milled into slabs

Some landscapers buy mature trees

If you have a great-looking tree that you feel would be a shame to cut up and remove, there are companies out there that will buy them and use for landscaping projects.

There is no point in me listing any here as you will need to get in touch with one local to you, but if you have a tree that looks like it can be dug up and hauled away on a truck and it is a desirable tree, then it is worth a phone call.

tree being dug up and transported

Remove trees free - Seniors assistance

Like the above example, tree companies can certainly give a discount for seniors but you will not be able to get it removed for free.

It costs a tree company $500 – $1000 per day in expenses to run with labor, equipment, fuel, insurance, etc. so they will need to cover costs and make a living on top of that.

Although most tree companies are charitable, they are not charities so they need to make a living to support their families.

Are their grants for getting rid of trees?

It will depend on your city and state. There are some grants available, but they are more closely linked to farming and helping with expenses rather than the home suburban residents.

Will the city cut down my trees free?

If the tree is on the cities land, they will get rid of the tree at no cost to you, if it is causing issues to your home. Trees that are on your property will need to be removed and paid for by the resident.

There are some sneaky ways to get the city to remove a tree for free, but it is a lot of work. Here is an article on how to do it here.

In cases where one tree is on the cities property and hanging over your property or home, you can report this and they will come and remove the offending branches at their own expense.

city removes trees on nature strip

Can I remove a tree myself?

DIY remove trees is a viable option and can be next to free if you have the right equipment.

Things to consider:

Tree size – If there is one tree in question and it’s greater than 15ft. (1 story house) then it is best being handled by a professional arborist. Working from heights with a chainsaw is extremely dangerous and should be respected. If you do not have the skills to pull it off, I suggest leaving it to a professional.

Dumping fees – Tree services can mulch your tree after they remove it and give away the woodchips free of charge. Unchipped tree branches are useless and will cost you to dump at the local tip.

Chainsaw hire – Hire companies usually hire for a half-day (4 hours) or full-day (24 hours). Make sure you also hire all the Personal Protective Equipment at the point of hire.

In a lot of cases, it will work out a lot easier and cheaper to get a local tree cutting service for the job for you.

hiring a chainsaw from home depot
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what to expect this oneeee121

Are there companies that remove trees for free?

There are as many tree companies that remove trees for fun, as there are plumbing and electrical services that go around unblocking drains and installing alarm systems free… None!

That being said some trees are seen as a commodity due to the resale value of the tree itself or the timber once split or milled by the company.

In most cases though, you will only save money on the cost of tree removal if the company thinks they can make some money on the firewood, it would not negate the cost of removal altogether.

Will a logger cut down trees for free?

A logger is generally an employee of a larger tree logging company. They deal with large tree plantations over tens or hundreds of acres. They will generally not bother themselves with a single tree.

Loggers get paid by the hour and the company they work for (the logging company) also gets paid for the job.

The person who owns the trees gets paid by a milling company for the delivered timber. They make a profit after they pay for the trees to be removed.

Does free tree cutting exist anywhere?

Free tree cutting will only exist in a few forms that I can think of;

  1. The tree can be re-sold – There are some highly desirable palm trees that landscaping companies will come and take them away at no expense to you because they can re-sell for a profit.
  2. You know someone with a chainsaw – If you have a friend or family member with a chainsaw, then maybe they would like to help you remove your trees for free one day as a favor.
  3. The barter system – Maybe you can offer the tree service something of equal value in return for getting rid of your trees. Maybe you are in marketing, accounting or anything at you can swap your services of equal value for them to do the work without money changing hands.

Actually get paid for palm trees

Palm trees are a different kettle of fish. If you happen to have the right type of palm tree and good access, there is a good chance that not only will you get trees removed free.

Most palm trees you will need to pay to have removed, but below is a list of desirable species that nurseries, landscaping companies, and building companies will pay you to remove.

Date palm

This palm is great because it is very common, but still fetches a good price from companies looking to remove them and sell them on. Landscaping companies pay a premium for these types of trees, so if you have one you might be in luck.

Date-palm-in-front-yard

Mexican Blue fan palm

It’s easy to see why these palms are highly sorted after. This unusual palm is not as common, but also very sort after.

Date-palm-in-front-yard

Mediterranean Fan Palm

These palms generally grow in clumps and don’t grow very tall, so they are highly desirable for pool areas and Spanish villa style homes.

Date-palm-in-front-yard

Guadalupe Palm

These palms are also considered a fan palm due to the fan-shaped fronds. Like canary island date palms, these palms grow quite tall and if you have then as a pair or more of similar height they can fetch even high prices as they are used quite often at the entrance of homes of buildings.

Date-palm-in-front-yard

Pindo or Jelly Palm

The Jelly palm is quite striking and unusual as it kind of looks like a giant pineapple. Its fronds are a similar silver-blue color to the Mexican fan palm but with the shape of a more traditional palm tree frond.

Date-palm-in-front-yard

Senegal Date Palm

Often found in clumps of palms like in the below photo, these palms a not too easy to come by, so do fetch a pretty penny. If you are lucky enough to own a clump of these palms and are looking to sell, I can’t imagine you will have any trouble finding a buyer.

Date-palm-in-front-yard

Companies that pay for palm tree removal

Knowing the palms that are sort after is one thing, but you will also need the companies that remove palm trees free or even pay for them (above examples).

Below is a list of companies and their state that pay for removing palm trees.

You can also just enter a search in Google along the lines of “Companies that buy palm trees [your state]”.

StateCompanyContact NumberWebsite
CALIFORNIASouth West Wholesale

Jungle Music Nursery
888 326-7256

619 291-4605
Website

Website
FLORIDABellair Palms800 223-0319Website
NEVADAMoon Valley Nurseries702 246-2065Website
ARIZONAMoon Valley Nurseries408 374-3964Website
TEXASMoon Valley Nurseries888 695-4720Website
free tree removal infographic website2

Possible companies to remove your tree free

SourceTree typesFREE tree removalWhat are my chances
Firewood companyAll except palm treesNo0%
Lumber CompanyExotic timber or a large
volume of trees
Maybe5%
Senior/ PensionerDiscounts but not freeNo0%
City paysOnly trees on public landYes100%
Landscaping companyExotic palms onlyYes70%
Insurance coverageFallen trees onlyYes95%
Free tree removal sources642

What does tree removal typically cost?

The cost of removing trees varies greatly from tree to tree and city to city. It even varies depending on if you get your tree removed in summer or winter so it’s a subject beyond the scope of this post, but I have a very detailed guide about the removal of trees, their cost here which will answer all your questions.

The average cost of tree removal is $871. The true range is $225 right up to $3900 for larger removals.

average cost of tree removal4

Is removing a tree covered by home owners insurance?

In some cases tree removal is covered by homeowners’ insurance, but only after the tree has fallen in a storm or by other means. Your insurance company will not come to the party for a perfectly healthy tree you wish to remove.

Think of it as surgery. Your liability insurance will pay for unexpected emergencies, but you are not covered for elective cosmetic surgery. The same applies to tree surgery.

FAQ's

This will totally depend on the company you use, some companies offer their services on finance and others don't, so if you need a finance option always check first before going ahead with the work.

Normally insurance only covers trees that have fallen over in a storm. If the tree is still standing and healthy, then you have a hard time trying to get insurance to take care of the removal of that tree.

Fifty feet is usually classed as a medium tree and will set you back around seven hundred dollars depending on the type of tree and difficulty of the removal. Online you can find various tree removal calculators that can give you an idea of the price based on the details of the tree.

Since pinewood is used for furniture, flooring, and other goods, pine trees are often worth money. If you have pine trees you should contact the right business and they can tell you how much your trees are worth.

Ben McInerney
Author: Ben McInerney - Ben is a qualified arborist with 15 plus years of industry experience in Arboriculture. He ran a successful tree service before turning to writing and publishing. Ben is dedicated to providing users with the most accurate up-to-date information on everything trees.