If you plan to prune, remove or plant a tree, regardless of where it’s located — your parking strip, the side of your house, the back of your property — chances are you’ll need a permit.
Unfortunately, navigating the complex ins and outs of getting a tree permit in Portland can be a frustrating and confusing process.
Fortunately, you’ve got the licensed, bonded, insured and ISA certified arborists at Urban Forest Pro on your side. We’ve dealt with the tree permitting process for years now, so we’re well versed and quite familiar with all those complex ins and outs.
Frequently Asked Questions About Tree Permits
When do I need to get a permit? You need a permit when pruning or removing street trees or when pruning or removing trees on a commercial property. If you are pruning or removing trees in your yard it depends on which city you live in. Our arborist as part of the tree service process will let you know if you need a permit. We can also help you obtain the permit, replant, or prepare a mitigation plan.
What happens if I do not get a permit? You could be subject to fines up to $1,000 per tree or $100 per inch in diameter in Portland even if the arborist never told you, you needed a permit.
Portland, Oregon: Tree City USA
We love living and working in Portland.
The city’s urban tree canopy — not to mention that of the surrounding metro area — is one of the most beloved and admired in the country. In fact, Portland was recently named one of the Top 10 cities for urban trees by American Forests, and the National Arbor Day Foundation has honored Portland as a “Tree City USA” 41 times.
What makes a city with lots of trees a “Tree City”? To be designated as such, a community must meet four standards established by the Arbor Day Foundation:
- It must have a tree board or department.
- It must establish a tree care ordinance.
- It must have a forestry program with a minimum annual budget of $2 per capita.
- It must observe and proclaim an annual Arbor Day.
Cities have environmental, ecological, safety and aesthetic reasons for requiring homeowners to acquire tree permits. And though it may seem like a hassle, the permitting process helps keep the region green and mitigates the urban heat island effect.
Tree Permits in Portland, Oregon
Let Urban Forest Pro take care of your Portland tree permits for you. These permits must have every “i” dotted and every “t” crossed, and we have a tremendous track record of success in being granted a permit for our work. After all, we’re one of Portland’s official “Local Tree Care Providers,” so you can rest assured knowing that we have an excellent working relationship with the city.
Penalties can be steep for running afoul of the city’s tree permitting process — sometimes as much as $1,000 — and a denial of permit often means you’ll have to wait at least a year to apply again.
The enforcement of these rules varies quite a bit based on the city and the department that handles the particular permit you need — but it is better to be safe than sorry. Sometimes, it’s difficult to know which department to call. For example, in Portland, six different agencies each handle a different type of tree removal permit. Finally, there are occasional changes to the city’s tree code that homeowners may not be aware of.
Generally speaking, the process for acquiring a tree permit depends upon several factors, including but not limited to: what city you’re in; the property’s zoning; type, size, and location of the tree; and even whether you live on a corner lot or not.
Urban Forest Pro
Urban Forest Pro provides permit acquisition services — but please remember: This is not an included service; it must be requested. However, there will not always be an additional charge for this service (depending on fees and what your particular permitting agency requires). Fees usually only apply if you do not get the work done by us.
If you do not request our permit acquisition services, we will assume you’ve done the research yourself and have acquired the proper permits. If you are unsure, just ask an expert at Urban Forest Pro, and we’ll work to find solutions and answer your questions.
The tree permitting process doesn’t have to be a hassle, especially when you have Urban Forest Pro as your advocate.
Contact Urban Forest Pro today for a free estimate from one of our certified arborists.