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From free to making money??

Discussion in 'Arborist 101' started by NEKS Tree Svc, Dec 12, 2012.

  1. NEKS Tree Svc

    NEKS Tree Svc I get up there

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    So many years later. Thank you all for the advice. I'm proud to be a professional, insured, and BBB accredited tree service.
     

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  2. trains

    trains Firewood hack

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    So now with some time under your belt, what would be your advice to your young self a few pages back ?

    And thanks for the follow up.
     
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  3. NEKS Tree Svc

    NEKS Tree Svc I get up there

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    I would tell myself to do exactly what I did, but advertise and hire the 2nd ground person sooner.

    I started with fallen trees, and widow makers. I began pruning and spikeless climbing fruit trees. Now I can take down any tree. I have done crane work, I have a forestry bucket now for road and easy access trees.
     

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  4. mbrick

    mbrick ArboristSite Operative

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    Wow, really nice to see the update to your posts from 7 years ago.

    Can you explain a bit more about the journey you took to where you are today?
     
  5. NEKS Tree Svc

    NEKS Tree Svc I get up there

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    I started small, after falling trees in the timber for firewood. I couldn't find anyone to teach me to climb, so I taught myself. I studied videos. I didnt really watch the video for the title. I watched how people got from limb to limb, how they moved around etc.

    The tallest, safest, anchor is something I wish someone told me sooner.
     
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  6. Bobby Lite

    Bobby Lite New Member

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    Wow NEKS! Just read this thread and what an inspirational story. Congratulations on your success, and I admire your determination.

    I consider myself in a similar situation that you were at one point currently, however I have no aspirations of starting a tree business. I have another full time job that is completely unrelated to trees, however I am a fairly serious woodworker on the side and took the plunge on tree climbing as a possible means to acquire more wood to work on (being able to offer someone the ability to prune etc. in exchange for the wood), and a semi-obsessive drive to maintain my property and everything on it myself. Furthermore, I try to ensure all "hobbies" (activities that are not my full time job) which require expensive equipment at some point pay for themselves, and hopefully at some point generate a little extra cash.

    Long story short, as it did with woodworking, shortly after friends, co-workers and family found out about me working on my own trees, I gradually started to get requests. While fulfilling some of those requests, neighbors/friends of the people I've done work for have inquired about potentially getting me to do some work for them and the question that comes up constantly is whether I'm insured (for tree work). Obviously, I'm not and I haven't even looked into it because I don't have a company and have only done work for favors and/or other things.

    Let me be clear about a few things: I don't plan on making this into a long term business, I don't plan on advertising (don't want to undercut, no pun intended, professional arborists in the area), and I would never take on a request that I didn't think I could do, or was potentially dangerous to myself or anyone's property. I would however like to help folks out that are in my immediate circle (and perhaps just outside) that may feel a little squirrely about hiring someone they don't know for a job that probably should be done that may not really need to be done. My assumption, perhaps naively, was that people would overlook the standard business practices (insurance being one of them) in exchange for a much lower price that comes with the lack of overhead.

    With that being said, I'm curious how you (early on) and others dealt with (or deal with) doing work uninsured on other people's property. Obviously this hasn't been a huge issue for me doing work for only folks I know fairly well, but I've been getting a lot of interest from neighbors recently and am not sure how to deal with it, other than doing it for free. My general rule of thumb is to do things for free or a massively discounted price for people in my immediate social circle, and then charging something more realistic to referrals or people who ask. That's one thing with turning a bowl or building a cabinet, but I don't have to tell anyone here that tree work is a bit more dangerous and physically difficult to do.
     

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