The Better Business Bureau warns citizens to be cautious when hiring a tree or handy man service after storms.
When door-to-door workers offer services to clean up after storms hit the panhandle, be sure to ask questions and make sure they have their door-to-door permit. You are able to check all solicitors at bbb.org.
Ask if they will perform their work according to industry standards, which can be found here. If a company mentions “topping a tree,” “lion’s tailing,” or talks of using climbing spikes to prune a tree, they do not follow industry standards.
Take the following steps to assure the business is credible:
- Get more than one estimate and take time to shop
- Ask if the company has certified arborists on staff. You can check for certification by the International Society of Arboriculture here.
- Make sure that the company has current liability insurance, as well as workers compensation insurance. Ask for certificates of insurance if necessary.
- Be sure to require a written contract agreement with anyone that you choose to hire. Make certain that the contract has their name, address, license number (if applicable), and phone number. A copy of the contract should be given to you. Don’t assume a tree stump removal is included if it is not specified.
- Do not pay until you are 100% satisfied with the job. Pay only when the job is complete.
- Don’t be pressured to make an immediate decision. Check bbb.org/Amarillo for more information on companies.
Be aware of tree services that:
- Are vague about formal arborist credentials
- Have no printed materials, letterhead, bid forms, etc.
- Only accept cash payments or ask for payments up front
- Offer unusually low prices at first
- Pressure for an immediate decision
- Claim that your home is unsafe
- Offer a discount to find other customers