What You Need To Know Before Removing a Tree From Your Property

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Tree Removal

There will be a time that you’ll need to do pruning or tree removal on your property. We understand that you have to perform those tasks for dozens of reasons. But do you know that you can’t just remove trees any time you want? 

There are laws and codes that you must know and understand in order for you to perform tree removal in NSW. Tree removal is regulated in New South Wales. There are several factors to consider before you are allowed to remove a tree – even if it is in your own backyard. 

Failing to identify the factors and situations that can get you in trouble is something you should avoid. Don’t worry. We’re here to help you.

Let this article be your guide and resource when planning to do pruning and tree removal in NSW.

Reasons Why You Should Do Tree Removal

We’ve mentioned above that you would want to cut or remove your trees for various reasons. However, these reasons for cutting down trees, lopping, and major pruning must undergo an informed process. It should be clear to you that indiscriminate tree removal is not allowed by state and local laws.  

Here are some valid reasons why you should do tree removal:

  • The safety of people, animals, and property around the tree is at risk.
  • The tree is infested with pests, sick or dying.
  • The tree is already dead.
  • You need to build new structures or do renovations in your property.

How Much Do Tree Removal Services Cost

The cost of tree removal services may vary. There are factors that can greatly influence the pricing of these services. Listed below are factors where the pricing of tree removal services are usually based;

  • The location of the tree
  • The access from the main road to the tree
  • Safety and environmental factors that can affect the tree removal process
  • The size and span of the branches of the tree
  • Logistics required (Equipment, manpower, skill level)
  • Stump grinding fees

The average range of tree removal services in New South Wales ranges from $300-$700.

Laws and Regulations on Tree Removal and Pruning in New South Wales

If you’re a resident of New South Wales, it’s important to know about some of the laws and regulations about tree removal in the state.

The rules regarding tree removal differ from council to council. However, each and every legislation covering this topic are patterned after Local Environment Plans (LEPs) and Tree Preservation Orders (TPOs). Most of the time, you will need approval council before removing any tree from your property.

Now that we’ve covered the general rule, let’s proceed to some specific laws for special situations.

Environmental Heritage Item 

There are species of trees that have significant value in terms of history, heritage, or are endangered that it is strictly prohibited to cut them down. If you own a Graveside Gorge Acacia a Velvety Spiral Pod Wattle, or any species of eucalyptus; then you’re out of luck. These are protected trees and you’re not allowed to remove them.

Regulated Trees

Trees that are huge and really old, regardless of their species, are treated and declared as regulated trees. 

Regulated trees have the following characteristics:

  • Trees that are at least 12 metres high.
  • Trunks that have at least 1.5 metres circumference measured 1 metre from the ground.
  • Trees with a canopy spreading at least 12 metres.

Significant Tree Register

If your tree is listed in the Significant Tree Register, you must request to remove it from the list. You should do this before applying for a permit to remove it from your property. 

Note: For Registered and Regulated Trees, a permit is not required for minor pruning. Anything more than minor pruning would require you to secure a permit from your local council.

10/50 Vegetation Clearing Scheme

The 10/50 Vegetation Clearing Scheme provides NSW residents with the right to clear vegetations like bushes and trees that are within 10 to 50 metres from their home. 

If the 10/50 Vegetation Scheme is applicable to you, approval from local authorities to remove the trees will not be necessary.

This law is part of the safety measures implemented by the NSW Government to protect the public from forest fires.

Situations Where You are Allowed to Remove Trees Without Getting Persecuted

Here are situations where you can treat trees as “fair game” and can remove them without the need for permits or fear of persecution:

  • Any declared pest plant
  • Any tree that is within 20 metres from your dwelling in a medium to high-risk bushfire area.
  • Any tree that falls under the 10/50 Vegetation Clearing Rule.

Final Thoughts

There are indeed a few hiccups and implications that can occur if you decide to remove a tree from your property. Special permits are needed, the species of the tree you want to be removed is a factor, and you definitely need professional advice and assistance when planning to do tree removal.

What do you think about the information presented in this article? Share your thoughts.

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