The land is normally cleared in preparation for building, planting grass, cultivation, and more. The cost of land clearing varies depending on the size of trees, density, and gradient of the land.

To clear an acre of land you can expect to pay from $1,500 to about $12,000. The topography and thickness of vegetation in the land will determine the cost of clearing. 1 acre of underbrush will cost $1,500 to $3,000 to remove whereas a wooded lot with trees will cost $6,000 – $12,000.

If you are clearing a lot for building, see if your building company will do it before paying extra yourself. If not, you are best getting a tree service in for the job.

¼ acre brush$650$1,200
¼ acre wooded$2,000$4,850
½ acre brush$1,100$1,850
½ acre wooded$3,000$6,000
1 acre brush$1,500$3,000
1 acre wooded$6,000$12,000
3 acres brush$3,900$7,500
3 acres wooded$15,000$28,000


The vegetation on the land determines how much you will pay to have it cleared. You will pay more to clear land with dense vegetation and overgrown bushes. Conversely, you will pay less to clear grasslands. You will also pay more to clear land with large trees.

The more difficult it is to maneuver through the land due to the vegetation the more you will pay to have it cleared.

Land Clearing Cost Per Acre


Topography refers to the slope of the land. You will pay less to clear flat land while you will pay so much more to clear hilly land. You will pay even more if the hilly land has large trees and overgrown bushes.

Debris On The Land

The type of debris on your land also determines how much you will pay to clear it. If the land you want to clear has more rocks, machines will find it hard to move around. As a result, you will pay more to clear it.

Further, if your land has lots of tree stumps to remove, you will pay more.

Land Grading

If you need your land graded after clearing, you will pay more. Land grading is the process of preparing it for its intended purpose. Land clearing is the process that takes place before you can start grading the land.

Once the trees, rocks, tree stumps, and other things on the land are removed, you can grade your land to get it ready for building or cultivation.

land grading

Any Property On The Land

If there are properties on the land, that you don’t need, demolishing them will be part of the land-clearing process. It will cost more to clear land with properties than bare land.

Demolition of property is an expensive process. Therefore, clearing land with any kind of property is an expensive endeavor.

Removal of the debris from the demolished property will also increase the cost of land clearing.

Distance Of Your Property From The Contractor’s Location

If the contractor you hire to clear your land is far from your property, they will charge you more to cover the cost of transporting their equipment to your land.

Further, if the contractor has to cover a long distance to dump the debris cleared from your land, they will charge you more.


Before you clear land, you need to find out from your local government how much you have to pay for permits and whether you need a permit.

In most cases, the larger the piece of land you want to clear, the more you have to pay for the permit.

Therefore, permits increase the cost of land clearing. Consult your local government office before you start clearing the land. You can expect to pay $200 for a land clearing permit.

How Can I Get A Reliable Contractor To Clear My Land

You can use the Go Tree Quotes tool to get a reliable contractor.

At the top of the tool, enter your zip code. Then, provide a few details on your land clearing project by filling out the form.

You will receive three quotes from land-clearing contractors. They will also offer you advice on how to go about clearing your land.

You can compare the quotes, pick one of the contractors, and contact them to get more details on how to complete your land-clearing project.

How Can I Get A Reliable Contractor To Clear My Land

How Much Does It Cost To Clear A Wooded Lot

To clear a lightly wooded acre of land, you can expect to pay from $4,500 to $8,000. For a heavily forested acre, you can expect to pay from $8,000 to $15,000.

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How Much Does It Cost To Clear Underbrush

To clear an acre of medium underbrush, you can expect to pay $1,200 to about $2,500. For heavily forested underbrush, you can expect to pay $2,500 to $5,000.

Underbrush consists of land with grub roots, small trees, and tree stumps. The cost of clearing the land will depend on the density of the underbrush growth. The thicker the underbrush, the more you will pay.

How Much Does DIY Land Clearing Cost

Land clearing is not an ideal DIY project. First, you need the skills to operate heavy machinery. Second, it takes a lot of time to complete.

If you decide to DIY land clearing, you can expect to spend more money than you would pay a contractor. You will need to hire all the land-clearing equipment. The cost of hiring this heavy machinery on a daily or weekly basis is extremely high.

If you pay a contractor to clear the land for you, they will use their equipment and charge you for the labor.


Clearing land is a large and expensive project. You need to prepare well financially and mentally. It is easier and better to have a professional do it for you. It will take less of your time and it will be well done. Once the land is cleared, you can go ahead and prepare it for cultivation or building.

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.