Frequently Asked Questions
We're often asked about how we work and what you can expect when you work with Sherlock Tree Company. Below are answers to questions you may have, but if you don't see the answer you're looking for, please give us a call at 954-788-4000.
A Certified Arborist is a tree care expert who has a minimum of three years experience in the tree care profession and has passed an exam developed by an international panel of arboriculture experts. The exam extensively covers every aspect of tree care and requires that the tree care professional has an acceptable level of knowledge in all areas of arboriculture.
This means that you receive the best possible tree care from a Certified Arborist. We have the knowledge, training and experience to recognize and treat any tree health issues, we practice arboriculture according to best practices and safety standards, and we love working with trees.
We are proud to have two ISA Certified Arborists on staff -
- Jonathan Wolfson - FL-6648A
- Dennis Forgione - FL-5918A
Sometimes the symptoms you're observing in your tree(s) are very distinctive and one of our Certified Arborists can make an accurate diagnosis over the phone.
However, it usually requires a visit from an arborist to examine the tree and surrounding environment before a diagnosis can be made.
We work with many HOA management companies throughout South Florida and would be happy to provide you with any details you may require. Please call us at 954-788-4000 for more information.
We do not top trees.
Homeowners often believe that topping (also called hatracking) is an effective way to reduce the size of a tree, open up the view, and make it safer.
The reality is the exact opposite.
After topping, a tree will quickly grow back to the same size (or even larger) but will have lost its natural shape and the new growth will be weaker and poorly attached to the trunk (making the tree more dangerous). Add to that the fact that the large, non-selective heading cuts made when topping the tree don’t heal well (leading to rot, disease, and insect infestations) and you have a recipe for disaster.
The professional standards that we follow as ISA Certified Arborists (the ANSI A300 Pruning Standards) clearly state that tree topping is an unacceptable practice that is harmful to trees.
Yes, Sherlock Tree Company is fully insured with liability and workers compensation insurance that is specific to tree care work. Please call the office at 954-788-4000 and we'll be happy to provide you with proof of insurance.
Tree work is inherently dangerous, both for the workers and the property on which the work is done. Without the proper insurance (this is very different from insurance for "landscaping") and workers comp, you are on the hook in the unfortunate event that something goes wrong.
Please, always check the insurance credentials of someone you're considering hiring to do tree work on your property.
You can learn more about insurance, certifications, and accreditation here >>
In general, we do not charge for a tree care estimate within our service area.
There is a fee, however, if you require an estimate for insurance purposes, an appraisal, property valuation, etc. Please contact the office at 954-788-4000 to discuss your needs.
If you live outside our normal service area, we may still be able to provide an estimate but there will be an additional cost. Please contact the office at 954-788-4000 for details.
We have to see your property and the tree(s) we'll be working on before we can give you an estimate. Every job is different - tree removal, pruning, and other tree treatments can vary widely from property to property.
It takes a well-trained tree care professional to diagnose the problem, assess the situation (including structures in the surrounding area, any dangers posed by the tree, proximity to electrical wires, access to the work area, etc.), and determine the best course of action. Without seeing the tree and what's around it, we can't possibly know what will be required to complete the work.
We work outside so if the trees are not locked behind a fence we could technically take a look without you being there.
However, we prefer to meet you in person. We like to build a relationship with our clients, as well as explaining what we suggest for your trees and the reasons why.
We always ask that you be present for your first appointment with our company.
Our employees do not expect payment on the day of service.
Our invoices are due at the time of service but the crews and technicians will not collect the fee when they are at your property (we do not want them to carry cash around).
We will usually send you an invoice by email (or in the mail, if you prefer). In some cases, treatment technicians will leave an invoice in your door or mailbox.
We accept payment by check or any major credit card.
We strive to offer you a fair price for the work and expertise that we offer, regardless of the method of payment.
We are not set up to handle cash payments and our crews and technicians cannot accept it from you as payment for your invoice.
If you would like to pay in cash, we can accept the exact billed amount (including tax) at any of our branch locations during office hours.
Our preferred method of payment is by check or credit card.
No, you do not need to be present unless the consulting arborist specifically notes otherwise OR if the work area is not accessible without you being present (for example, behind a locked gate).
The crew or treatment technicians will have a work order describing the work the consulting arborist wrote up for you, including a landscape map. They will complete the work following these guidelines.
We usually have a backlog for work to be completed, so cannot schedule new work to be done immediately.
Even though it sounds like the logical thing to do, we also cannot just pick a date to schedule your work to be done. A lot of factors influence our scheduling. For example, timing is affected by weather, equipment, employees, release forms, and sometimes we need to coordinate assistance from energy providers and utility contractors.
When we schedule, we first look at the date on which a proposal was accepted; work that was accepted first will be scheduled first.
We usually call you about a week prior to the work to let you know your work has been scheduled. These scheduled workdays are always dependent on weather and equipment so may be changed (we try very hard not to do that).
Unless otherwise specified, we do not require you to be present for work to be completed.
Even though you see a crew in your neighborhood, they cannot be called over to work on your property. Their day is fully scheduled out with work they have to complete. They will not have a window of time available to add more work.
If you like what you see, please call our office! We will schedule one of our consulting ISA Certified Arborists to visit your property. They can take a look at your trees and property and write you an estimate for the work using industry standards. After you accept the proposed work, we will call you a few days before the work is scheduled to be completed.
We do not require a deposit prior to doing the work.
All businesses that advertise, offer, or perform tree trimming in Broward County are required to obtain a Tree Trimmer License. Licenses are valid for a maximum of two years.
Sherlock Tree Company has a Class A Tree Trimmer License - No. A-1205.
Below are details about this license from the Broward County website -
Article 11 of the Broward County Natural Resource Protection Code outlines regulation of the tree trimming industry. This action was taken as a result of concerns about the quality of tree trimming practiced in Broward County, and to protect the health, safety and welfare of the public.
Through continuing education, this ordinance reduces the frequency of poor pruning practices such as over lifting, rounding, flush cuts, stub cuts, hat racking and other forms of pruning-related tree abuse. These poor pruning practices damage trees, reduce their aesthetic value and can make them more prone to storm-related failure, creating hazardous situations. Tree abuse is prohibited under Chapter 27, Article 14 of the Broward County Code of Ordinances.
Two classes of licenses are issued, depending upon the level of professional training an organization‘s staff has achieved:
Class A Tree Trimmer License:
Requires a sole proprietor or a qualified individual for a business organization or a governmental agency to possess an International Society of Arboriculture Arborist Certification or be a Registered Consulting Arborist with the American Society of Consulting Arborists. Also required is an affidavit stating that the required number of employees have either successfully completed a substitute training course or the training course offered by Broward County Extension Education.
Class B Tree Trimmer License:
Requires a sole proprietor, a business organization, or a governmental agency to demonstrate that they have the required number of employees who have successfully completed the training course offered by Broward County Extension Education and have passed an examination.
All businesses or governmental agencies that advertise, offer or perform tree trimming in Broward County are required to obtain a Tree Trimmer License. Licenses are valid for a maximum of two years.
Our enforcement officers look for unlicensed tree trimmers and for tree trimmer crews working without a qualified person physically present on the job site. Any organization or individual operating without the required Class A or Class B license is subject to a notice of violation, a citation or a stop-work order. Violators can be fined up to $15,000 dollars per day, depending on the severity of the infraction.
To report unlicensed Tree Trimmers please call us at 954-765-4400, Option 2 or email.
The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) facilitates the development of national standards for different types of work. The ANSI A300 standards are the generally accepted industry standards for tree care practices and cover everything from planting to pruning, tree risk assessment, and integrated pest management.
At Sherlock Tree, we follow ANSI A300 standards in all of our tree care work.
We have been accredited by the Tree Care Industry Association (TCIA) since 2019.
TCIA Accredited companies are required to meet stringent criteria for professionalism, employee training, state and federal safety regulations, business ethics, and consumer satisfaction.
All TCIA Accredited companies have undergone a comprehensive on-site audit of professional and business practices, aimed at safeguarding consumers. We are also required to go through periodic recertification to ensure that all criteria are continuously met.
Sherlock Tree Company is one of only a handful of Accredited companies in Florida, and just over 450 in the whole country.
You can learn more about TCIA Accreditation and what it means to you here >>
We do tree work for both residential and commercial customers across a large part of South Florida. We also work on large-scale projects throughout the entire state.
You can see our service area here.
Or, if you're not sure, give us a call at 954-788-4000 to see if we cover your specific neighborhood.
Florida Public Utilities states that you MUST call 811 before you dig (no matter how small the digging project) to avoid hitting underground utility lines—which are shallower than you may think.
It's always a good idea to contact Call Before You Dig (call 811) about a week in advance to get underground utility lines marked before stump grinding, tree removal, or large pruning jobs. FPU will come and mark your lines (at no charge to you) within a few business days after you contact them.
If you have any underground sprinklers, drain lines, invisible fences, septic fields, or underground cables, those should also be marked or mapped.
Unless the underground lines and structures are adequately and accurately marked or mapped, and that information is presented to our crew before work starts, we can't be responsible for any damage caused during performance of the work.
We clean up all debris from performing our tree services before we leave your property (unless you've made other arrangements with us and it says so on the proposal).
That means we'll rake all lawn areas, clear streets and sidewalks, and remove all brush, branches, wood chips, and logs from your property.
Generally not. We use special ground protection "mats" that are specifically designed for heavy trucks and equipment and will minimize the possibility of any ruts in your lawn. However, there are sometimes situations where damage is beyond our control, such as ruts in the lawn due to wet conditions, or cracks in paved surfaces due to unforeseen issues with the underlying surface.
As far as the tree itself, there should be little to no lawn damage. We use ropes and pulleys to lower branches and wood safely. We say little because once we get to the base of the tree trunk and we have to push pieces off, some impressions will be made from the weight. We will rake the area after finishing the work but there may still be some depressions near the tree stump.
In South Florida, all HOA's require authorization before you can cut down a tree - whether that's on common property or your own. Check your CCRs and management company for details before you book a tree removal service.
Most cities in South Florida require a tree removal permit. Call our office at 954-840-8372 to see what the requirements are in your city. We'll even help you get the necessary permit before work is done.