How I saved £750 on cutting down trees

I was quoted a whopping £900 to have three trees removed (about 10 ft tall) and decided to do it myself!

We couldn’t keep on top of the trees and wanted some more space. They were two Cyprus leylandii and one tree that was already dead but we had a trunk left.

The first quote I got was, and frankly was an absolute con. I spoke to some tree specialists and they say to remove the trees really should have been less than £300. Anyway, this quote got me thinking:

  • £600 to level the trees to the ground (£500 if I booked there and then!) – what a rip off!
  • £400 to take their root stumps out, if manually as they couldn’t get a machine in, though should be around £75 if using a stump grinder, if you can get it into your back garden that is!

Wowzers that is loads of money, so like a determined lumberjack, I started to cut back the trees myself. I have a pair of loppers and started to lop away. This is hard work.

Mr Bargain Hunter asked what I was doing and I explained, so he got out his chain saw, a Flymo cordless one with a little chainsaw at the end. He said it cost him £150. If you don’t have one of these, hire one at HSS for around £100, but that’s a big one, so that’s probably the highest price you would need to pay.

That started to make light work of my cutting, but before you do this, you still need to have the strength to lift the cutting tool and drag the branches, and that is part of the service you buy for £600. I am a not very fit and still managed to do the work. It took me three hours to get through about 3/4 of the trees.

There were lots of branches, so we decided to take the branches to the tip, otherwise our green bin would still be full for ages from now.

We worked out that we’d need to make around 15-20 trips, so that 45-60 miles…eeks, and we’d have have to load and unload the car….mmmmhhh.

We decided that there must be an easier way, and looked at hiring a garden shredder. Who knew that Homebase hired shredders? For £88 we could have hired a shredder, but we don’t have a van, so couldn’t. Instead, we bought one for £150. It was brilliant and made light work of turning to wood chip. I did use my safety goggles which I’d got recently for a whopping £1.50 from Home Bargains to protect my eyes too.

As it’s ours, we are now able to cut down a lot of other plants too that are overgrown and turn to chippings or stick in our green bin, which now seems like it takes loads more content.

So for cutting down our trees to ground level, our costs were our labour (free) and a lot of sweat, and £150 for the shredder…though if you have to have a chain saw that would be £250.

Now onto the roots, we went through and found some people to take out the roots. They had a big machine, so you will need a wide gap to get it through. That cost us £75, so for £225 that we paid out, we got rid of three trees and stumps, and have a shredder for long term use…oh and of course, we used the shredded branches as bark/mulch for our play area.

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