How to Start a Tree Service Business: 10 Steps to Success
Are you an enthusiastic arborist? Or are you looking for a profitable business idea that involves creativity and nature?
Either way, starting a tree service business could be the answer for you.
Tree service companies can be incredibly lucrative, but it takes industry and business know-how to truly make your tree care company successful. However, there is a huge opportunity in this tree service industry because the homeowners and corporate companies with trees need your help.
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Whether installing, removing, trimming, or pruning the trees, the tree service businesses serve homeowners and businesses alike. You will help the property owners with weekly, monthly, and annual maintenance and also help during emergencies. But being a skilled arborist alone isn’t adequate to start your tree service company. You need to understand the working of multiple elements to start the business, manage it, and scale up. After all, starting a new business in any domain isn’t a piece of cake.
But nothing to worry about. In this article, we have gathered all the information about how to start a tree service business and broken it down to ten simple steps. Just follow them and you are all set to start a successful business and earn profits beyond your imagination.
Table of Contents
1. Take Up A Market Research
If you want to start your own tree removal business, start with understanding the basics of the industry. To that end, conducting thorough market research is of prime importance. Check out the best tree service companies; learn about their services, follow how they market their business, how they expand, and their economic analysis.
In this stage, you’ll know the channels; where you can get the potential customers, assume the level of competition, and the possible threats and challenges you may face in operating a tree service business.
2. Define Your Service Offerings
Suppose you’re seeking professional help for garden and lawn maintenance; whom will you contact? A board-certified master arborist or a professional tree care company! Isn’t it?
Similarly, the construction or road contractors will contact a tree service company to carry forward the ongoing construction project by cutting down the obstructed trees.
The tree services companies offer services for everyone, from your neighbor to the government’s contractors. renowned tree services companies offer various services, like – tree removal, planting, pruning, bracing, storm damage repairing, parasites treatments, risk assessments, and tree consulting services.
Different services require different equipment and manpower involvement. As a start-up, you should define the profitable niche or services you want to focus on according to your investment. Start with a few services based on your skills and experience.
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3. Write A Business Plan
If you’re serious about starting your own tree removal services, you need a solid business plan. This plan will serve as your roadmap – stating the focus and purpose of your business, how you are going to achieve your business goals, and when you plan to achieve them. With it, you can monitor and assess the growth of your tree cutting business.
Writing your business plan properly is key. Owners must set up the path toward a successful business. This includes realistic goals and first-year projections. Decide who your potential customers are. Will it be residential clients? Are commercial clients an option too? Keep in mind that commercial property owners produce a lot of profit. However, residential customers provide a more steady income. You’ll also get a steady income through premises that require constant upkeep. Don’t forget to factor in the expenses for safety equipment and other resources that you may need for a smooth workflow. If you will need an office and staff for your tree care company, this should be considered in your budget.
Your business plan should include:-
- Tree service business name, logo, and contact details
- List of professional tree care services
- Pricing plans
- General liability insurance
- Overhead expenses
4. Obtain Proper Certification as an Arborist
Knowing how to start a tree service business will not suffice if you want success in your venture. For that, you will need to know how to do the job perfectly as well. For this purpose, you will need to be certified as an arborist.
To start a business, you will need to acquire business licenses before you can legally operate your business. For example, you must register your business with federal, state and local governments. There are several documents you must prepare before registering. This includes DBA (doing business as), EIN (employer identification number), income tax forms, federal, state, and local licenses and permits among other things.
Your local city hall is the best place to obtain a business license. You can then use the SBA’s database to search for state and business type licensing requirements.
5. Choose A Business Structure
Before registering your company, you need to decide what kind of entity it is. Your business structure legally affects everything from how you file your taxes to your personal liability if something goes wrong.
You can choose from four established business structures, namely sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, and limited liability company (LLC). If you are running the whole thing on your own, you can obviously register your business as a sole proprietorship. But considering future risks and opportunities, it is advisable to register your tree service company as a corporation or LLC.
6. Register Your Tree Service Business
The next step is to register your tree care business as a legal entity with the local businesses registry. If you want trademark protection, you’ll have to register it on a federal level too. The processes, the fees, and the business license will depend on the jurisdiction and the structure.
Find out what are the required documents at your city’s town hall. There, you’ll know the exact cost of registration. At this point, it’s important to register your domain name and set up your social media platforms. Thus, you’ll make sure that no one takes the name of your brand.
7. Set Up A Business Bank Account and Credit Card
Since you are running a tree service company, you need a business account to track all the business expenses, payroll, and income.
Once you set up a business account, you must also get a credit card. Doing so will separate both business and personal accounts.
8. Get Insurance for Your Business
It might slip your mind as something you intend to get around to eventually, but purchasing the right insurance for your business is an important step to take before you officially launch your tree service company. Dealing with incidents such as property damage, theft or even a customer lawsuit can be costly, and you need to be sure that you’re properly protected.
Although you should consider several types of business insurance, there are a few basic insurance plans that most small businesses can benefit from. For example, if your business will have employees, you will at least need to purchase workers’ compensation and unemployment insurance.
You may also need other types of coverage, depending on your location and industry, but most small businesses are advised to purchase general liability (GL) insurance, or a business owner’s policy. GL covers property damage, bodily injury, and personal injury to yourself or a third party.
9. Get the Right Equipment
The need for staffing and equipment depends on the services you plan to offer. Here’s a list of tools that the tree service professionals generally need:-
- Chain, Logging, Climbing, and Pole saw
- Climbing boots
- Climbing ropes
- Bull ropes
- Eye guards
- Ear protector
- Mini skid steers
- Block trailers
- Bush hogs
- pruning shears
- Stump grinder
- Bucket truck
- Brush chippers
- Oil can
- Orange cones
As a beginner, you must first book a job and buy only the equipment you need for the project to enhance your profit margin.
10. Invest in Technology
If you want your Tree Service company to make the maximum profit and successfully build a brand for your business, you must leverage modern tools and technology. In this age of digital transformation, tools like tree removal business software could be your biggest advantage in this fierce market competition.
With this smart field business software, you can easily standardize and streamline your business processes to optimize your resources and increase efficiency. For example, these software solutions help you to automate scheduling and dispatching, optimize routing, track and monitor your field technicians in real-time, create and send invoices directly to to the customers, organize customer databases, and so on.
A tree service business is a great business venture. It’s sustainable; there will never be trees that won’t need your attention. It’s a steadily growing industry currently worth $29 billion. Plus, it can be easily run from your home. You can even start out as a part-time business if you don’t want to commit to it full-time yet.
And the best way to manage your business on the go is to sign up for Field Promax. The cutting-edge business management app allows you to monitor and organize your field teams on the go. So, why wait? Subscribe today and watch your business grow.
For more information, contact Field Promax.