Free Tree Removal in Exchange for Wood in Just 7 Steps (Guide)

Man asks another man with an ax about free tree removal in exchange for wood while pointing to a tree in a burlap sack.

Tree removal services can be quite costly, making free tree removal in exchange for wood services a lifesaver for most people.

And, the good news is that you can get free tree removal services in various locations, depending on the tree’s circumstances and location. In addition, there are a number of public and private programs that can be used to get free tree removal in exchange for wood.

Depending on where you live, and the other specifics of the tree removal, there are ways to check if your area has organizations, companies, or people who remove trees for free. While most companies charge for the services in cash, others just want the wood from the trees as payment.

The following guide outlines seven steps for getting trees removed, including how to negotiate tree removal and also includes a number of other free tree removal services and programs.

How To Go About Free Tree Removal for Lumber

Anyone would want to benefit from free services, especially when the service is pretty costly and hard to DIY. Therefore, a process and criteria are used to identify people who should benefit from the free tree removal services.

In most cases, the free tree removal services will be available to the elderly, people living with disability, or veterans.

However, you can get a tree in your backyard removed for free even if you do not belong to any of the above categories. Here are the steps to follow to find free tree-cutting and removal services near you.

1. Identify Why You Want the Tree Removed

The first and crucial step when looking for free tree removal services is to identify why you want the tree removed in the first place. That is because you could have a valid reason to earn a free removal service from the city or any other organization near you.

One of the reasons that could help you benefit from free tree-cutting services is having a dangerous tree like the Manchineel tree on your property.6 The tree poses a danger to you and anyone living near it. Due to the entire tree’s poisonous nature, you might be unable to remove it yourself.

A photograph depicting a Manchineel Tree adorned with lush green leaves. The tree appears to be healthy and thriving.

(Image: Yinan Chen7)

Another valid reason for free tree removal services is if the tree is within town property. It could be right outside your property, but in an area the county government owns. Other possible reasons include a dead or sick tree or fallen trees that barricade the road or other public areas.

Related Reading: How Many Christmas Trees Are Cut Down Each Year? (New Stats)

2. Establish Whether You Qualify for Any Free Tree Removal Services

Free tree removal services are available to certain groups that might not be able to do it themselves, like the seniors. However, there are many other ways that you can qualify for the free service. In the first step, you can see how to identify whether your tree removal is valid or not.

Finding a valid reason to cut down a tree could be the first qualification to getting free removal services in your area. You should also check whether the law allows you to cut down that tree because sometimes you do not have the right to remove a tree unless a certified arborist authorizes it.

Other times, the law prohibits you from cutting down a tree even if it is on your property to try and curb the deforestation crisis. Ensure you check with your local authorities before authorizing any tree removal, even when you get the free service.

3. Look for Anyone Who Removes Trees for Free

Finding organizations, groups, and people who cut down trees for free in your area could be a task. You can start by approaching tree removal companies near you to see whether they have a free program for anyone in their area of operation. They could be having an offer or simply willing to trade the free service for wood.

It is important to note that not all trees will get you a free service in exchange for wood. Some of the trees that can get you a free service from loggers are:

  • Kingwood
  • Western Red cedar
  • Swietenia Mahogany wood
  • Ashwood (Fraxinus)
  • Oakwood (Quercus variety)
  • Black Cherry wood
  • Dalbergia (species of rosewood)

These trees are highly desirable resources, and if you need any removed because of the danger they present, you can usually find certified experts who’ll do the work for free and take away the debris.

Another way to find people willing to cut your trees in exchange for wood is to have many trees that need cutting. Loggers might find cutting a single tree for free, a waste of time, even when they get the wood in return.

An image showing a man engaged in tree cutting activities on the ground. The man can be seen using a tool to cut through the trunk of the tree while standing beside it.

(Image: Reijotelaranta8)

You can also get free services from organizations that collect endangered tree species or charities that want to help clear a particular area. The last option for free tree removal services is the town workers. However, they will only help when the tree is dangerous to the people or is within their property.

4. Find Out Whether the Free Service Uses a Barter System

Getting someone to remove a tree you do not want on your property is one thing; finding out what they want in return is another. Looking for people who are clear about what they want in return for cutting down your tree is essential. That helps you avoid complications afterward when maybe they want money, and you do not have any.

Identify entities that want wood in return for cutting down your tree. It could be a neighbor with the right skills who want the tree for firewood or loggers who will later sell the wood to carpenters. Ensure you ask before accepting the free service whether the wood from the tree is enough payment.

5. Agree on the Terms

Sometimes it helps to have everything written down to avoid anyone going back on their word. That is especially when you are dealing with individuals who are not working within any organization.

Agreeing on the terms and signing a contract could save you the trouble of dealing with a lawsuit if anything were to go wrong.5

Once the other party has agreed to do free tree removal in exchange for wood services, draft a formal agreement outlining all the details to be on the safe side. If it is a neighbor or a volunteer, the situation might not be as formal as with a stranger.

6. Plan on the Tree Removal Day

You should also agree on when the tree removal will happen, a day convenient for you and the service provider. Choose a day when the area where the tree is has little to no traffic for safety reasons. Tree cutting can also be loud and messy.

Ensure no serious activity is happening within the area on the removal day. You should also be around to help the tree removal team if they need anything during the process. You cannot also leave unsupervised strangers in your backyard.

7. Have Your Tree Removed

The last step in this guide is to watch as the tree is safely removed from your home and the area cleared. It is essential to have a professional team with all the safety gear required to do the job. That ensures that no careless accidents happen during the tree removal process.

A knowledgeable team will also help you remove the stumps and clear the place leaving no gaping holes that could be dangerous for people living near the area. If all goes well, you should have the place looking like there was no tree without paying a dime for it.

Related Reading: How Many Trees Are in the World? By Country, Type, Year (Updated 2022)

Where To Look for Free Tree Removal In Exchange for Wood Services

In addition to the seven steps listed above, there are other programs that offer free tree removal so you can reduce the cost to remove damaged trees from your property.

Free Tree Removal for Seniors Near Me

Many tree removal companies will have a program for free tree removal for seniors in their areas of operation. They do that as a means to get their name out there and also as a way to give back to society.

You can find out the age limit for such services and the companies with such offers by searching for ‘free tree removal for seniors near me’ on Google.

Free Tree Removal for Veterans

Some companies also appreciate the work that retired soldiers have done for the country by offering them free tree removal for veterans services. If you have served in the military and need free tree removal services, you can easily get them from such companies.

Tree Removal Assistance Program

Sometimes you do not even need to belong to any community or group that needs assistance. Some tree removal assistance programs assist people with tree removal simply because they understand how hard it is to remove a tree.4

It could also be because it is their obligation as that city’s government.

Such programs have criteria for identifying the people that need help, but you can also reach out to them and request their help.

In such cases, they might decide to take up the wood exchange for the service offer or simply do it for free. You can ask your neighbors and friends whether they know of any such programs or do a google search.

Charity Tree Removal

Charity organizations do a lot of free work for people within the areas they operate, including services like tree removal. If there is a charity that does environmental services in your area, you can liaise with them and have that tree that is giving you trouble removed from your area.

These organizations might not take the wood in return for their services like the assistance programs. However, some of them could have other charity cases that need furniture or other wooden items, prompting them to accept timber as an appreciation token.

Free Tree Removal for Disabled Residents

Many programs offer free tree removal for disabled residents. Consult with local people, friends, or even the authorities to find out about such services in your area.

Organizations and companies that offer such help to disabled people will rarely charge them for anything. If you decide to offer the wood from the tree in return, then well and good.

Government Grants for Tree Removal

When you cannot get free tree removal services because you do not fall in all the above categories, you can turn to your government for help. Getting a grant for your tree removal from the government is possible. However, you must apply for the tree funding grant and hope to win the grant.1

As seen in this guide, some factors determine whether you will get the grant, including the circumstances surrounding your tree removal. If it is a matter of urgency, you can get the grant to prevent any accidents from happening.

The Hazardous Tree Removal Program

Some programs are specifically designed to remove hazardous trees. If you have a dangerous or poisonous tree in your neighborhood, you can easily have it removed for free. In such cases, barter trade might not even be an option because some trees contain poison in all their parts.

If it’s a fallen tree or an invasive one, the people removing the tree can accept the wood in return for the excellent service. At least every county should have such a program for the safety of its people.

Free Tree Removal in My Area

Another way to get free tree removal services is to search for the services within your area. Simple research online or in the neighborhood will help you identify the organizations or individuals that offer the services in exchange for wood.

An image depicting a man engaged in cutting a tree. The man is holding a cutting tool and appears to be using it to saw through the trunk of the tree, which is partially visible in the background.

(Image: Soykast9)

It could be logging companies, tree services, landscapers, local handymen, lumberjacks, or utility companies. If you have neighbors with log fires, they could also offer to help you remove the tree in exchange for firewood.

Companies That Cut Trees for Free (Free Tree Removal in Exchange for Wood)

Companies that cut trees for free any mainly logging companies and utility companies. Logging companies will do it to get certain wood species in return. Utility companies do it if the tree is in the way of its service wires.

However, logging companies prefer working with people with specific tree species and multiple trees to remove. That is because they also want value for their services, which is the wood they will get in return.

How To Negotiate Tree Removal

Whether you are looking for a free service or not, you need to learn how to negotiate for tree removal. It will help you to get the best services at a reasonable cost, and the same tactics can be used when using a tree removal cost calculator.

Use things like the type of tree, ease of removal, and the number of trees to negotiate for a fair price. You can offer to give the wood from the trees to the removal company for a better price or no price at all.

This explains that looking for experts who can work on removing trees is never difficult. It is just a matter of making sure that you will get the reliable service provider of free tree removal in exchange for wood.

Frequently Asked Questions About Free Tree Removal In Exchange for Wood


How Do I Find Tree Cutting and Removal Services Near Me?

You can do a Google search online or ask around for anyone with a referral.


How Can I Get a Tree Removed for Free?

If you are a senior, a veteran, or are living with a disability, getting a tree removed for free is easy. You can also get free services even if you do not belong to those groups by contacting the city authorities to remove a tree on their property or a dangerous tree. The other way to remove a tree for free is to talk to charity organizations. The other option is companies that deal with reforestation and carbon offset projects in their environmental restoration efforts.


How Much Does It Cost To Cut Down a Tree and Remove It?

The average cost of cutting down a tree and removing it is $700-$750.3 However, some factors contribute to the cost, including the size of the tree, its location, and the company you choose to work with. In some cases, the price could go as high as $2000.


How Much Does It Cost To Remove Tree and Stump?

Removing a tree stump costs about $150 and $500. That depends on many factors, including the root system’s complexity and the method used to remove it. When you add the tree removal price discussed in this guide, you could pay up to $2500 for the entire process.


Will the City Cut My Tree for Free?

The tree will only cut your tree for free if it is on the city property or poses a danger to the people of the city. They have services like the hazardous free removal program to help people remove dangerous trees. Other than that, you will have to apply for grants or seek other free tree removal service providers to help you with that.


Am I Eligible for Free Tree Cutting Services for Seniors?

That depends on the company you are working with and their policies on the same. You can ask them about the age limit for qualifications or do your own research online. For example, in Escambia County, you need to have an income that is less than 80 percent of the Escambia County Median Area Income.2


What Do I Need To Do To Qualify for Tree Removal Assistance for Elderly People?

That depends on your place and the companies or individuals you work with. Some of the companies term you eligible based on age only, while others could use age, income, and the state of your property to gauge your eligibility.


Can I Get a Grant for Tree Removal?

Yes. However, some factors determine whether you get it, and you must apply for the grant within the specified timeline. Check with your local government to find out how to go about it. You should also have permission to cut down that tree because some cities prohibit tree cutting due to the high average American carbon footprint.


Will the City Cut Down a Tree on My Property or Offer Me Free Tree Removal in Exchange for Wood Services?

Most city workers will remove a tree from your property for free depending on the level of danger it poses to people around it. If the tree is on city property, they will do it for free but retain the wood now that it belongs to the city. Free tree removal in exchange for wood services highly depends on the agreement between you and the person offering the service.


Who Is Responsible for Fallen Tree Removal?

That depends on the tree’s owner and whose land the tree has fallen. If it falls o public land or belongs to the city, then the city authorities will be responsible for it. However, any privately owned tree that falls on private property is the owner’s responsibility.


How Does the Tree Removal Cost Calculator Work?

It uses factors like the size of the tree, the number of trees, and the location to give you an approximate removal cost. In some cases, it also considers the removal method, especially when you want the stumps removed.



1AZ.Gov. (2022). Tree Grants. Department of Forestry and Fire Management. Retrieved September 9, 2022, from   <>

2Free Tree Removal for Seniors. (2022, July 29). GoTreeQuotes. Retrieved September 9, 2022, from   <>

3How Much Does Tree Removal Cost? (2022 Guide). (2022). This Old House. Retrieved September 9, 2022, from   <>

4Tree Assistance Fund. (2022). Logo. Retrieved September 9, 2022, from   <>

5The Tree Work Contract. (2022). University of New Hampshire. Retrieved September 9, 2022, from   <>

6University of Florida. (2022, March 7). Hippomane Mancinella, Manchineel. IFAS Extension. Retrieved September 9, 2022, from   <>

7Manchineel Tree Photo by Yinan Chen / CC0 | Public Domain. Good Free Photos. Retrieved from,   <>

8Reijotelaranta. Pixabay. Retrieved from,   <>

9Soykast. Pixabay. Retrieved from,   <>