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his project started out of the blue. One Friday morning I was leaving for work and I ran into my neighbor who was having some of his land cleared. He asked me if wanted to get some cut down too for free. I told him that the land was mostly his and I wouldn't ha ve much. To my surprise, he said half of the land between our houses was mine. He showed me the line marker in the woods and I was shocked since the previous owner of my huose told me it was 50 feet out of my garage, not 150 feet. I then told the guy sure on the tree removal since it was a big amount of land to reclaim from being woods. The area was mostly white pine trees just like I used to have on the rest of my property. I called the power company and they showed up within half an hour and dropped the power line to my house so the logger could dropped the trees properly. It took the guy a week or so to finally take down all the trees on my lot. The problem with logger is that while free, they don't really care about the mess they make. I was left with something similar to what a nuclear winter would be like. I ended up having to buy a chainsaw and do a lot of the cleanup dirty work myself.

Quote 1 - I got my the excavator over that I used for my past few projects for a quote. He had he idea to level the land and to talk to my neighbor on also removing his half of a half that existed between our lots since it was mutually benefical. Otherwise, I would be stuck building a retaining walls if I removed my half of the hill and he didn't. He also said I could save money by reusing the topsoil that existed natually if he screened it himself. My quote for the project was $4,400 to get it to the state where I could place grass. He also suggested to save money, that they put my three dozen stumps out back somewhere

Quote 2 - Stump grinder. I talked to a guy I found on craigslist.org that did tree removal exclusively. He suggested grinding the stumps. I don't really like the grind option since after about 5 years, you can "dents" in the lawn from decomposition of the stump grinders and debris. I figured it was worth exploring though since it could be cheaper. His quote was $3,500. This included cleanup, chipping and grinding but no ground leveling or topsoil. It hardly seemed like a viable option at any rate.

Quote 3 - I decided to talk to another excavator just to see what he said. He didn't own the screening machinery for the topsoil and said it wasn't affordable since it's expensive to rent. He quoted me $3,000 alone for the topsoil. He also wanted to haul off the stumps which he said was $1000. All in all, his quote came to $8,000. This was way more than what I expected!

In the end, I went with my first quote

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Start date of: 8/10/2007
Completion date of: 10/24/2007

Price breakdown:

  • Tree removal on left side of house - FREE
  • Tree removal on right side and back side of house - $1900
  • Excavation - $4400
  • Driveway blacktop removal and install - $1500
  • 12 new Noweigen Spruce tree, 2 dogwood, 2 english oaks - $1000
  • New tree delivery and install, 10 yards of top soil - $750
  • Total $9550