Trees add tons of beauty to your landscape, but sometimes they need to be removed. Diseased or decaying trees, dead trees, trees with compromised stability, and invasive root systems can all pose a risk to your house and your foundation. We’ve detailed the average cost of tree removal and the factors that can affect this price.
Tree removal typically costs $341—$1,523.Get Free Estimates
Removing a tree stump will range from $150–$500.Get Free Estimates
Most tree-trimming projects cost between $300 and $800.Get Free Estimates
What Is the Average Cost to Remove a Tree?
Tree removal typically costs between $341 and $1,523 for a roughly 50-foot tree.* The average cost to cut down a tree is $657. However, your total tree removal price depends on several factors including the tree’s size. Big trees generally cost more to remove than small ones.
You may find tree removal services with cheap pricing, but always make sure you’re hiring a certified arborist who is insured for tree removal. Even jobs that appear simple can have unforeseen complications or long-term consequences, so don’t leave the safety of your property and the health of your landscaping to chance. Arborists must renew their licenses regularly and receive ongoing training in best practices for tree removal.
*We averaged all cost figures in this article from 8 Billion Trees, ProMatcher, and Lawn Love.
Factors That Determine the Cost of Tree Removal
Large trees cost more to remove because they require more heavy-duty equipment, the removal process is riskier, and there’s more material to dispose of. However, other factors determine the price of tree removal beyond size. We’ll go over these in detail below.
Size of the Tree
The taller the tree, the higher the cost. Taller trees require more labor and equipment, and they’re more difficult to remove safely.
However, height isn’t the only dimension that matters. Tall trees also usually have thicker trunks. A tall tree with a narrow trunk may cost less to remove than a tree of the same height with a thick trunk. If a short tree has a thick trunk that’s particularly hard to cut, a tree removal company may charge extra. Similarly, if a tree has more than one trunk, it will be more complicated and pricier to remove.
We’ve listed some common tree heights with their average prices to remove:
- Small, 30 feet or shorter ($300–$500): Fruit trees, hawthorns, silver birches, etc.
- Medium, 30–60 feet ($600–$1,000): Maple, elm, etc.
- Large, 60–80 feet ($1,500–$3,000): Mature oaks, evergreens, etc.
Type of Tree
- Ash: A mature ash tree can reach 40–80 feet and usually costs between $800 and $2,000 to remove.
- Cedar: Cedar trees can vary in height greatly, so the cost for removal runs from $500–$2,000.
- Maple: Mature maple trees can grow 60–100 feet and are typically quite expensive to remove, usually costing $1,100–$2,000.
- Oak: A mature oak tree is 60–80 feet tall and costs around $700–$1,300 to remove.
- Palm: Palm trees vary in height based on the species, but their trunks aren’t very thick. Because of this, they cost about $300–$900 to remove.
- Pine: There are more than 100 species of pine trees, which can grow to as little as 5 feet tall to well over 90 feet. The general price for pine tree removal is between $300 and $3,000.
- Poplar: Poplar trees grow 90–115 feet and have extensive root systems. They’re some of the most expensive trees to remove, costing about $1,500–$2,000.
Health or Condition of the Tree
A diseased tree can be a health and safety hazard to other trees, your property, and anyone who comes into your front yard. Such a tree might be cheap to remove because it’s easier to cut down, but it might be more expensive if it’s in a dangerous position and could cause damage if it falls. Schedule an inspection with a tree removal service to get a quote in this situation.
A tree that has already fallen is much cheaper than a living tree to cut and haul away, provided that it hasn’t created an emergency. A tree trunk simply laying on the ground is safe and easy to remove, costing only $100–$300.
Emergency Tree Removal
When a tree suddenly falls on your home or car or leans precariously, you need to remove it before it can cause further damage. This job is riskier because the technicians will have to be very careful to avoid additional damage. Tree removal prices vary substantially by situation and contractor, though they can easily go up to $5,000.
Your homeowners insurance policy may cover part or all of the cost to remove a fallen tree on your property, so check with your insurance company before paying for this service out of pocket.
If you live in a wooded area and want to clear multiple trees, you may be able to pay by acreage. A lightly wooded area might cost you between $500 and $2,500 per acre, but a higher tree density could put the price between $3,000 and $6,000 per acre.
Other Cost Factors
The cost of tree removal doesn’t depend on just the tree itself. Other factors can increase the price. We’ve broken down some of these additional cost considerations below.
- Accessibility: Anything that makes removing trees more difficult will also cost more. This includes sloped yards, rocky or muddy soil, an angled trunk, or weak branches. If it’s risky to access the tree—for example, if the tree is near power lines or close to your house or other buildings—you might get charged an extra 50%.
- Location: You may be charged a travel surcharge if you live in a remote location since the contractor will need to drive heavy machinery out to your property. Additionally, people who live in locations with a higher cost of living will likely see higher costs when hiring tree removal contractors.
- Machinery: Special machinery such as cranes must be used to keep the falling tree from hitting surrounding structures. Expect to add at least $500 for jobs that require a crane. Based on our customer review analysis, some tree removals with cranes cost up to $6,000–$7,000.
- Permits: Many areas require you to purchase a permit to remove a tree taller than 10 feet. While the cost of a permit is relatively low—between $60 and $150—failing to get one before beginning work could net you a more substantial fine later in the process.
Additional Tree Services
With the exception of emergency tree removal, most homeowners are usually looking to remove trees as part of a larger landscaping project. In this case, you may want to look into some of the other services that tree removal companies provide. You can save money by hiring a company for a comprehensive project instead of breaking it up into multiple jobs.
The cost of tree removal typically includes removing and disposing of the trunk and large branches. However, you’ll often be left with additional debris you don’t want to dispose of yourself. Hauling away debris can be expensive and time-consuming if it’s not something you’re equipped to do. Some professional tree removal services will offer different methods of debris disposal for an additional price.
- A company may offer to haul away extra debris for an additional $50–$100.
- A company may use a wood chipper and turn the debris into mulch for your next landscaping project. This usually costs $75–$125 per hour.
- You can also have the tree and larger branches split into fire logs, typically for about $75–$100 per tree.
Stump Grinding or Removal
The price of tree removal doesn’t always include removing the tree’s stump. Removing the stump and its roots can cost an additional $150–$500, depending on the time it takes and the root system’s complexity. Some homeowners may like the look of the stump and want to include it in their landscaping, but most want it gone. Because of the stump’s remaining root system, which might not be obvious from above the ground, this is usually a job for a specialized professional.
Stump grinding, in which a hydraulic machine mulches the stump and some of the roots, is typically a little cheaper at $100–$400. Less common methods to kill a tree stump include burning, which is about $250 per stump, or a chemical treatment, which costs about $100.
If you like a tree in your yard but want to move it to a different location on your property, consider tree transplanting. Small trees are the easiest to relocate and may only add $300–$800 to the job. Transplanting medium- and large-sized trees can cost tens of thousands of dollars. Note that not every tree removal company is equipped to perform this service, since it requires different equipment than simple cutting.
Tree trimming costs around $300–$800, depending on the job’s scale. You may want to trim trees to improve the appearance of your landscaping and home, as well as to decrease the risk of falling limbs damaging your roof or home. Tree pruning is a routine part of improving a tree’s health.
You might opt for wood chipping so you can use the debris from the tree in your garden as flooring or compost. Wood chipping costs around $250–$350 on average, but the tree size determines the total cost. This is because wood chipping costs around $70–$125 per hour. Below is a breakdown of what wood chipping costs based on an oak tree’s size.
- 20-foot oak tree: $320–$520
- 30-foot oak tree: $521–$650
- 45-foot oak tree: $651–$730+
Tree Removal Cost by State
Different states have different required permits and environmental laws, which can affect removal costs. Your state’s cost of living will also impact price. Below is a list of the average tree removal costs for states around the country to give you an idea of price ranges in your area.
- California: $650–$1,300
- Illinois: $550–$750
- Florida: $750–$1,500
- Georgia: $700–$1,500
- Maine: $500–$700
- New York: $750–$1,100
- North Carolina: $600–$900
- Ohio: $800–$1,400
- Texas: $300–$850
- Washington: $550–$800
Tree Removal Costs: Rural vs. City
If you reside in the countryside, you might have to pay a bit more for tree removal. In a city, companies are closer, so you most likely won’t be charged for travel time. On the other hand, if you live in a rural area, tree removal companies might charge around $0.50 per mile for travel or an extra flat rate fee of $50–$200.
When Is It Safe To Cut Down a Tree Myself?
Tree removal is typically best left to professionals, as they have the proper equipment and training for both felling the tree and getting rid of it. If a tree is taller than 30 feet or within 10 feet of power lines, it’s absolutely not a do-it-yourself (DIY) project. You could end up with fines, injuries, or even lawsuits if you attempt to remove a tree in these situations.
Here are some factors to keep in mind when removing a tree on your own:
- Safety: Even removing a relatively small, slender fruit tree can be risky. Make sure you have all the necessary safety equipment, such as goggles, gloves, sturdy work boots, a hard hat, and hearing protection.
- Equipment: You’ll need to be comfortable with a chainsaw, own a pole saw and tree spade, and rent a wood chipper if you want to consider taking on the job yourself.
- Permits: Check whether you need a permit to remove the tree.
Tree removal can be pricey, with an average cost range of $341–$1,523. We recommend hiring a professional for the job, as even removing a small tree can be dangerous on your own. Using a tree removal pro ensures your home and landscaping won’t be damaged and the job will be completed quickly, safely, and efficiently.
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