In your quest to have the ultimate landscape, you may find that you need to call on a certified arborist. But with so many options, how do you select one? Before choosing a certified arborist, a property owner should look at many things including the company’s Better Business Bureau grade, insurance, credentials and reputation.
Better Business Bureau (BBB) Grade
The BBB assigns grades A+ to F to businesses based on the information the bureau has on file about the business, such as complaints filed and licensing. When considering a certified arborist, be sure to complete an online search of the company’s BBB grade. This information is easy to access and free online. In addition to the grade, you can see any complaints filed, customer reviews and more. For example, by visiting the BBB Business Review of Ostvig Tree Care, you will find that we are a BBB Accredited Business and have an A+ grade.
It’s understandable that many people make the assumption that every arborist has the proper insurance… which is exactly why you need to ask for proof of their coverage. Property owners who don’t ask run the risk of having to pay for personal and property damage caused by those who are uninsured. Be sure to verify the company’s proof of insurance, and if you’re still not 100% certain of its validity, contact the insurance company. The tree care company or arborist should have personal and property damage insurance and workers compensation insurance.
A reputable arborist is certified through a local and/or national program. They may also be a member of a tree or landscape organization, which shows their dedication to staying informed on what’s new in the industry. If you are hiring a certified arborist in the state of Minnesota, find out whether or not they are (or need to be) licensed to work in your particular city. Otherwise, they may not be aware of the processes for that city.
Angie’s List review website is a great way to find a trusted service provider. Businesses receive reviews for their services and the reviews are then checked for any suspicious activity such as for self-promotion. Some businesses receive Super Service Awards for achieving and maintaining a superior service rating as determined by Angie’s List members. For example, Ostvig Tree Care won the Angie’s List Super Service Award in the category of “Tree Service.”
It’s always a good idea to ask friends and family who they recommend for services such as tree care. Knowing that you are working with an individual or company that is trusted by someone you know provides a sense of comfort. Ask about your friend or family member’s overall experience and whether or not they would use the company again. You may also want to do some of the research mentioned above… just in case.
Want to know more about the benefits of choosing a certified arborist? Learn more by reading our What is a Certified Arborist? blog post here.
Photo credit: Flickr user matt.boman