We inspect trees for risk and health, and for other reasons detailed below. We do not do tree work. If we find a need for tree work during an inspection, we will recommend a tree service that meets all of our high standards for quality, safety, and honesty.
Our area of expertise is residential properties. Our customers include:
- Condominium and Home Owners Associations
- Real estate agents and home buyers
- Architects and landscape architects
- Other Certified Arborists (for a second opinion or Resistograph testing).
We consult with homeowners regarding construction projects. We do not work for builders or developers on residential or commercial lots.
When we schedule an appointment for a tree inspection, we prefer that you are there with us. We like to explain what we are seeing, answer your questions, and teach you a little something about your trees and their care while we're evaluating them.
Please read this section carefully to avoid any confusion regarding our fees.
Most of our services are billed at $150 per hour.
Visual Tree Assessment (VTA)
This is a time charge, not a per tree charge. The amount of time it takes to complete a visual tree inspection depends on how many trees we are inspecting and the trees themselves -- how big they are, what kind of condition they are in, etc. At single-family homes, we can usually complete a standard VTA in an hour.
Sometimes we get a call from a homeowner who is concerned about only one or two trees. Our $150 minimum charge applies, but don't hesitate to have us look at other trees on your property while we're there!
“Climbing” (Aerial) Tree Inspection
Once in a while during an inspection, our arborist discovers that he needs to climb the tree to find out if a branch, branch-to-trunk connection, or cavity above eye-level on the trunk is decayed or rotten. Before he climbs, he will discuss why he thinks an aerial inspection is necessary and give you an estimate of the cost.
When our arborist uncovers signs of rot or decay, he may have to do a Resistograph® test to determine the extent of the problem. The cost depends on how much drilling is needed to make an accurate assessment of a tree. A typical Resistograph test (one or two drillings) performed during a tree inspection costs between $50 and $100. "Stand-alone" Resistograph tests, asked for by another arborist to document the need for a tree removal permit, are billed at $250-$350 plus the cost for a written report.
Homeowner (or buyer) Construction Consultation
Are you planning an addition to your home? Need to replace your driveway or water lines? Putting up a rope swing or treehouse? We can advise you about the best way to preserve your trees in the process. We can also evaluate site plans and write a tree protection prescription required for building permits.
TreeInspection.com can provide five different types of reports, depending on what's needed, by whom, and for what purpose.
Tree Risk/Health report. This is our standard written report when we do a tree inspection. Our customers often like to have this report for their records. It includes a summary of the tree's risk level, and our observations, comments, and recommendations for each tree we inspect. If we have performed a Resistograph test on a tree, the results will be provided in this report. Resistograph test results are usually required by municipalities to qualify a tree for a removal permit when the tree needs to be taken down because it has extensive decay. Our fee for this report is based on how long it takes us to prepare the report, usually around $50 to $100.
Tree Prescription. This report often includes the same information as the tree risk/health report (without Resistoraph test results), but it also has instructions for protecting a tree when a land disturbance permit is sought (renovation, demolition, new construction). It is submitted with a Tree Plan to protect trees that are be retained. It is required by many jurisdictions when the critical root zone of a tree is being impacted due to land disturbance.
Tree Plan (also called a "Tree Prescription" or "Tree Conservation Plan"). A tree plan by a Certified Arborist is usually required along with a Site Plan for approval of a building permit when trees will be impacted by construction. In addition to verifying the size, species, and location of trees on the site plan, a tree plan may include proposals for site grading, construction, methods of tree protection, calculations for tree canopy or diameter at breast height (including for proposed conserved and planted trees); and other details required by the tree ordinance where it is being submitted. We submit tree plans for new construction and renovations in most inside-the-perimeter counties and cities.
Appraisal. This is a summary report of the monetary value of all or some of the trees on a property. Occasionally we are called in for an evaluation and appraisal when damage to a tree needs to be assessed. Also, an appraisal done ahead of time can be used to calculate property value or loss to that value if a tree is destroyed by an extreme weather event such as an ice storm or tornado. Click here to view an appraisal report by Neil Norton.
Inventory. This is a list of all the trees on a property by species, size, and GPS location coordinates.
Our service area is generally northern Atlanta and most of DeKalb County, including Decatur, Tucker, Brookhaven, and other areas inside the perimeter. If you are calling for an inspection outside of our service area or that requires lengthy travel from our home base, we will discuss our travel fee with you when you make your appointment. For some areas we may be able to refer callers to a Certified Arborist who is closer to your home.
We appreciate payment by cash or check (made out to TreeInspection.com) at the time of the inspection. If a report is required or payment is not made onsite, our invoice will appear at the bottom of our report. We do not accept credit cards.