So you’ve figured out that you need some professional help from an arborist contractor and now it’s time to start planning. Arborists can be invaluable in helping maintain your trees, whether they’re for commercial or private use. Here are some tips on the dos and don’ts of a good contract with a reputable arborist contractor.
Beware, Short-Term Contractors,
Before signing on the dotted line, make sure you know how long the contract will be valid. Many companies have dismal three-month contracts because so few people read them before committing, but this is something that shouldn’t be taken lightly no matter how strong your desire to hire that company might seem at first glance.
Some contractors swear by this tactic, and any contract signed without careful deliberation should be considered null and void. Ask for a longer-term contract or get ready to renegotiate it after three months.
Be On the Same Page About Damage
A good arborist contractor will not damage anything but your trees when performing services. This is because they’re trained professionals who know what to look for to prevent collateral damage while “suspected” pests and diseases are being diagnosed and treated.
No matter how essential specific tasks might seem to you, an arborist contractor will only do what they’ve been hired to do and nothing else unless you give them explicit permission for otherwise. Clarify these details before signing on the dotted line so that there’s no confusion whenever they’re on your property.
Don’t Let Your Insurance Policy Interfere with the Contract
Before hiring an arborist contractor, make sure to read over any fine print in your insurance policy about needing to submit reports or notifying them of certain tasks that need to be taken care of for you to protect yourself. Some companies will use this clause in their contract as a means of getting out of any work that might be too arduous, tedious, or time-consuming.
If you want full service from start to finish, let them know beforehand so no one is trying to get away with anything down the line. Other clauses usually involve sending notifications when chemicals are used and handling disposal if necessary.
This stuff makes contractors nervous because it’s not their expertise. They’ll want you to help them or find someone who can, so make sure this is also included in the contract upfront.
They’re Not Your Employees
If you feel like your arborist contractor is taking things too slow, keeping irregular hours, always showing up unannounced, or doing anything that makes you feel uncomfortable about the work they’re doing for you then it might be time to reevaluate.
While some of these contractors are easygoing and likeable people who will go out of their way for clients (and let them go), others will try to do as much as possible without much oversight because that means more money in their pocket when all is said and done.
Make sure everyone involved with your project is on the same page and that you’re always updated on what they’re doing, because trust is key.
Contracts are meant to protect everyone involved in a project so that no one person can corner another into working for sub-par rates or without any consideration at all. Without being too demanding or difficult, it’s up to you to make sure your interests are protected as much as possible within the confines of good business practice.
Read over everything carefully so nothing falls through the cracks because if something does go wrong, you’ll have someone who can be held accountable later down the line.
Don’t rush into signing anything with an arborist contractor before weighing all of your options carefully. You don’t want to end up regretting anything further down the line. Do your best to give everyone a fair shake and make sure nothing’s being done that you didn’t agree with ahead of time because then you end up with no one to blame but yourself later down the road.