Removing a Tree to Improve Your View: How Easy Is It?

In some cases, tree removal is necessary to prevent a potential accident. If the tree was destabilised after extreme weather, or if it has diseased and dying limbs, then that removal might prove to be mandatory. But what about when a tree is perfectly healthy and is simply in an inconvenient position? Should you remove a tree to improve your view?

The Relevance of Preservation Orders

Established trees (both those on public and private land) can be subject to a preservation order, issued by your local council. This order protects trees whose removal might have an adverse effect on the local ecosystem. The specifics of the orders can vary depending on the jurisdiction but are generally related to the tree's age, height, and canopy width. Preservation orders can be dismissed when the tree's condition means it's dangerous, but not when you simply want to remove the tree to improve your view. However, if the tree is blocking a significant amount of sunlight from reaching your home, then this could be grounds to request an exemption. In short, make sure you won't receive a fine for improper tree removal.

A Thorough Assessment

The next step is to contact a qualified arborist to make a thorough assessment. They can also suggest alternatives, such as substantial pruning to reduce the tree's height. This will need to take place in conjunction with reshaping the canopy to prevent the tree from looking like it has simply been lopped in half. Relocation of the tree may also be a possibility, but this is a risky proposition, requiring a great deal of effort, and it's not a given that the tree will survive the relocation.

Removing the Tree

When removal is the best course of action, the results will be immediate. Small to medium trees may be toppled — cut down with a controlled fall to ensure that no nearby property is damaged. The stump is then dug up. Larger trees might require disassembly, which involves a crane to allow the piece by piece removal of the tree from the top down. To ensure soil stability (and improve the aesthetics of your backyard), a smaller tree with a reduced maximum growth can be installed. 

The removal of an inconvenient tree on your property not only improves your view but can also increase the value of your home. Be sure that removal is permitted and that you use a qualified arborist.