Chris' Corner: Do You Have Money growing on trees?

Do You Have Money growing on trees?

Do you have money growing on trees?

If you have an established garden with mature trees, it is quite possible that you do!

Did you know that a mature Japanese Maple could cost $7500 to replace? That a mature Mahogany tree could be worth as much as $100,000!

Grab your attention?

When we bought our home, we attributed value to the mature maple, oak and various other trees and shrubery on the property. We did not want to wait thirty or forty years for saplings to mature.

A 2009 report by Delloitte and Touche for the Canadian Nursery and Landscape Association found that a well-landscaped property can add up to 20% to the value of a home and that landscaping can bring a recovery value of 100% to 200% when you sell your home. This is because trees are more expensive the older and bigger they get.

Horticultural Asset Management, takes an insurance perspective and, for a $400 fee, will produce a book that will provide an inventory, complete with photographs, and will present a five year valuation of the items in a garden.

Bill Glynn, the co-founder, says that about ten percent of the gardens assessed have plants worth more than $10,000.

Want to add value to your home? ... Or, thinking of selling and want to obtain full value? Do not neglect your garden.

Attracting Birds and other wildlife and Helping to Save Our Planet are just added benefits =)

Chris Smith CSSBB
          Sales Representative

Interested in Buying or Selling Real Estate?

  ph: 1.866.936.3500

Chay Realty Inc.,

Comment balloon 65 commentsChris Smith • May 19 2011 08:01AM




I've written about this topic before. Next time I'll check some of the references you have here. Thanks for the post.



Posted by Brian Madigan, LL.B., Broker (RE/MAX West Realty Inc., Brokerage (Toronto)) about 9 years ago

Hi Chris - And here I thought our garden was just another pretty face!!  ;-)

Seriously, this is a really informative post. I had no idea that good landscaping had this kind of affect on the value of a home. Thanks for this. I hit Suggest.

Posted by Judy Klem, Home Staging, Senior Move Management, Fairfield/New Haven counties (Transition Stage LLC) about 9 years ago

So true Chris...we paid a small fortune to landscape our last house because it was a new construction. Realtors should point out the value of the landscaping on a property to Buyers.  

Posted by Al & Peggy Cunningham, Brokers, Our Family Wants To Help Your Family! (RE/MAX West Realty Inc., Brokerage) about 9 years ago

It sounds like trees should be part of the retirement plan for every young person.  Imagine what an acre of hardwood saplings might fetch in forty years.

Posted by Dan Rosenberger (Harvest Realty) about 9 years ago

Brian, I will have to look up your post..

Thank You Judy.

Al and Peggy, I saw how well you landscaped your last home and can only imagine how much it cost... my parents waited thirty years for their landscaping to mature, some people do not want to wait that long...

Dan "investing" in landscaping can be wise, if done pragmatically with some thought...

Posted by Chris Smith, South Simcoe, Caledon, King, Orangeville Real Esta (Re/Max Chay Realty Inc., Brokerage) about 9 years ago

Chris, I had no idea that so much value could be attributed to certain trees. Dan has it right in his comment, it should be something we encourage young people to do, and it's good for our environment.

Posted by Malcolm Johnston, Trenton Real Estate (Century 21 Lanthorn Real Estate LTD., Trenton, Ontario) about 9 years ago

Trees really are very precious to a property - I would encourage new home owners to plant trees right away so they can enjoy them asap!

Posted by Gina Tufano, Ask Gina & Company, Northern Virginia Real Estate (Ask Gina & Company with Pearson Smith Realty) about 9 years ago

Chris , good post on this information, looking at tress in a different way, that for the info, 

Posted by Myers Jackson, America's Auctioneer (Auctioneer, Texas Flip N Move ) about 9 years ago

Valerie, when we were looking for a home in the country a few years ago, we did not consider non-landscaped properties... The trees, and the birds and other wildlife they attract are part of what we wanted when moving to a rural property...

Malcolm, most people probably know, inately, that mature trees are expensive (if they have investigated planting them), but many do not realize the potential value of a mature garden.

Posted by Chris Smith, South Simcoe, Caledon, King, Orangeville Real Esta (Re/Max Chay Realty Inc., Brokerage) about 9 years ago

Thank you Myers, trees are great for the environment, for wildlife and potentially good for your retirement

Posted by Chris Smith, South Simcoe, Caledon, King, Orangeville Real Esta (Re/Max Chay Realty Inc., Brokerage) about 9 years ago

Chris, I had no idea that mature trees add to the value of a property...thank you for the information. My husband will love this news!

Posted by Wanda Kubat-Nerdin - Wanda Can!, So Utah Residential, Referral & Relocation REALTOR (Red Rock Real Estate) about 9 years ago

i don't know about that chris... you think a bank is going to lend on a mature mahogany tree an extra 100k on a home?



Posted by Vince McEveety (Gilleran Griffin Realty) about 9 years ago

Thanks, Chris.  I might have to contact my father-in-law about more trees for my home.  He's the smartest farmer I've ever met who knows oodles about trees.  Thanks for the post.

Posted by Mike Cooper, GRI, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro (Cornerstone Business Group Inc) about 9 years ago

Chris wow 20% more value, that is indeed significant. People like mature trees too.

Posted by Gary Woltal, Assoc. Broker Realtor SFR Dallas Ft. Worth (Keller Williams Realty) about 9 years ago

Great post and info...I'd like to see the percentage to value here in San Diego..

Posted by Cory Barbee, Broker (760) 563-4022 about 9 years ago

I don't know about money growing on trees, but Canada does have a tree on money - specifically, the Canadian Maple Leaf 1 oz. silver coin.  You can buy one today for about $42 US.  Buy a bunch of them, bury them in the ground, and see how much they have grown in 10 years.

Posted by Bob Willis, Orange County & L.A. County Real Estate Agent (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties) about 9 years ago

It is fascinating to think that landscaping can add that much value to a property! I know in new home sales it is noticable how expensive landscaping is because it's not normally included, but it's not something that crosses my mind much on resales. Thanks for the education!

Posted by Tricia DeSouza, Selling Scottsdale Luxury (HomeSmart) about 9 years ago

Great post Chris! I never thought of that trees has a lot of effect on a value of our home. This is another aspect to look in buying  a home! Thanks for all the information!

Posted by Rob Kittle, "We Specialize, You Benefit!" -Kittle Real Estate (Kittle Real Estate) about 9 years ago

Wanda, not all trees are as valuable as others monetarily, but they all help our environment =)

Vince, not sure if a bank will loan on it, but if you do your due diligence, and if you have trees in demand, there are people and/or companies that will pay you for it...

Mike, I loved the reds of our Maples in the fall, and we have two different oaks, one that must be thirty feet tall... I thank the original owners for this.  Our home is about fifteen year old, and if they had planted saplings we would be waiting years for them to mature...

Posted by Chris Smith, South Simcoe, Caledon, King, Orangeville Real Esta (Re/Max Chay Realty Inc., Brokerage) about 9 years ago

Gary, when planting trees can be a wise investment, and benefit our planet, it really is a "win-win"...

Cory, in my marketplace, well landscaped homes not only sell for more, they sell faster.

Funny Bob, I did hear that silver finally has come down a little, though I bet not for long.

You are very welcome Tricia, I am sure you intuitively new this, but seeing it on paper surprised me too.

You are welcome Rob.  One of the many added benefits to mature trees is the wildlife they attract to your home... The birds can be quite loud just before dawn, but I would take this kind of noise over the noise of urban sprawl anytime =)


Posted by Chris Smith, South Simcoe, Caledon, King, Orangeville Real Esta (Re/Max Chay Realty Inc., Brokerage) about 9 years ago

I just wanted to thank everyone for their comments.  I have not been a very "active" blogger, and at times am self-concious about the "drivel" I write about...

When I see the posts by Russel Ray, Al and Peggy Cunningham, Michael Thornton, Wanda Kubat-Nerdin, Valerie Zinger and the great information that Brian Madigan posts regularly, to name a very few... mine hardly seem worthy of mention...

I have never had a blog featured before, not sure if I know how it is even done, but thank you to all who help make this happen.

Posted by Chris Smith, South Simcoe, Caledon, King, Orangeville Real Esta (Re/Max Chay Realty Inc., Brokerage) about 9 years ago

Great Post!

Posted by Charlene Hammontree, Meeting the needs of Buyers and Sellers in MICH (616 Realty LLC) about 9 years ago

Chris, most excellent bit of information that slipped through the cracks on my end.   Thanks for writing!

Brian L. Sirota, Esq.

Posted by Brian L. Sirota, Esq., For Solutions: (714) 501-7660 (Bristar Realty (Realtor/Attorney)) about 9 years ago

I am curious to what the real market is if someone actually wanted to sell them.  But the information is pretty neat.

Posted by Stefan West, Temecula-Murrieta-Menifee CA Real Estate (West Realty) about 9 years ago

I've heard of many a law suits according over changes in landscaping!  GREAT post

Posted by Laura Sargent (Carolina One Real Estate) about 9 years ago

Good Evening Chris

Thanks for the post. Have a great day

Posted by Patrick White, Driven to bring New Yorkers home (Home Driven Realty, Inc) about 9 years ago

Hi Chris - Congratulations on your first feature.  Keep up the great blogging and have a fantastic long weekend.

Posted by FN LN about 9 years ago

I wonder since I live in a forest how much value my hundred foot tall cedars and pines would add...I know my inlaws put in several thousand to their palms and tropical backyard that are really big and beautiful now. Nice blog, thanks for the info.

Posted by Kerry Jenkins (Prime Properties) about 9 years ago

This is really good information. I knew landscaping was expensive but had no idea that mature trees were so valuable. PS. you don't write drivel. Not at all. It never is, no matter the subject if it comes from the heart.

Posted by Sandy Acevedo, RE/MAX Masters, Inland Empire Homes for Sale (951-290-8588) about 9 years ago

Brian, you are a great real life example of the principle, thanks for sharing your story.

Thank you very much Valerie.

Thank you Brian

Posted by Chris Smith, South Simcoe, Caledon, King, Orangeville Real Esta (Re/Max Chay Realty Inc., Brokerage) about 9 years ago

Stefan, the person that planted the trees in my property, planted them too close, not anticipating their growth.  I thought about thinning them out, but now will investigate whether a tree farm, or some other person wants them before removing a few selected trees.

Thank you Laura and Patrick =)

Marc, this surprised me more than anyone ;-)

Amy, I know that some trees are more valuable than others, investigate this...

Thank you Sandi... there are so many great writers out there... I guess it is as Russel said, each person has their voice.

Posted by Chris Smith, South Simcoe, Caledon, King, Orangeville Real Esta (Re/Max Chay Realty Inc., Brokerage) about 9 years ago

Indeed an interesting article! I had a homeowner actually SELL some of the trees BEFORE putting the place on the the time I saw the house, it was already too late!

Posted by Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor (Charles Rutenberg Realty) about 9 years ago

You caught my eye because I have a mature Japanese maple that is dying. It's the saddest thing and it breaks my heart. My gardener told me it would cost $50,000 to replace it. It's probably 100 years old. But if I could get a new one for $7,500, I'd probably do it.

Posted by Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%, Put 40 years of experience to work for you (RE/MAX Gold) about 9 years ago


This is very interesting!  I have a very small lot, but have 4 Bradley pear trees on it.  I enjoy the SHADE they give me and the help of keeping my electric bill from becoming a national debt!

Posted by Kathy Opatka, Serving Ocean City, MD, & The Delaware Beaches (RE/MAX CROSSROADS) about 9 years ago

Great Post!  I never thought I would be so happy driving down the road and seeing trees..spending a lot of time in NYC makes you really appreciate nature..I'll have to check my backyard for those Money Trees! 

Posted by Tara Stone, NJ Estates and Stables (eXp Realty) about 9 years ago

"When we bought our home, we attributed value to the mature maple, oak and various other trees and shrubbery on the property. We did not want to wait thirty or forty years for saplings to mature."

Right on!  I'm with ya on this, as mature trees are a big deal to us when we purchase a home.  :)

Posted by Joe Lane Richland, WA Realtor, 509.438.9344 (Kennewick Richland (and West) Pasco WA Homes For Sale) about 9 years ago

Great post!    Many people are attracted to our area of homes because of the majestic redwoods.   Even so, I often give a gift certificate to a nursery at closing so that my buyers can plant a tree of their own choosing to mark the celebratation of their new property.    It's a gift that keeps giving as they see it grow and add beauty to their home. 

Posted by M.C. Dwyer, MC Dwyer-Santa Cruz Mountains Property Specialist (Century 21 Showcase REALTORs) about 9 years ago

Yes - plant trees. But no junk trees, please! I wish our community would ban the horrible cottonwood.

Posted by Joetta Fort, Independent Broker, Homes Denver to Boulder (The DiGiorgio Group) about 9 years ago

Chris, great post.  When I am asked to compare new construction to already built houses, the landscaping is one point that I mention. 

The slower the tree grows, the longer it will last without breaking over.  River Birch and Bradford Pears are 2 examples in the Louisville area that won't last.  Location of the plantings is also important.  People plant a River Birch 3 foot from the house and in a few years, it needs to come down before it destroys the house.  The older Bradford Pears were famous for limb breakage.

Posted by The Hollinden Team, Serving the Greater Louisville area (EXP Realty) about 9 years ago

Hi Chris,  Interesting topic.   I always think the real value is the emotional engagement trees provide.

Posted by Bill Gillhespy, Fort Myers Beach Realtor, Fort Myers Beach Agent - Homes & Condos (16 Sunview Blvd) about 9 years ago

Chris, as an amateur woodworker, I can attest to the expense of the lumber, but I never thought about the value of entire tree. So please excuse me while go out and get a chainsaw. I have several mature Maple and Pin Oaks in my back yard. LOL

Posted by Ray Waisler, NMLS #6621 - Specializing in Jumbo FHA & VA (Finance of America) about 9 years ago

All this monetary value besides the fact that I love all the trees & plants on my property.  they give me joy every day.

Posted by Jirius Isaac, Real Estate & loans in Kenmore, WA (Isaac Real Estate &TriStar Mortgage) about 9 years ago

landscaping DOES sell a home . . . and mature trees add to the appeal.  I've had clients who insisted they wanted "trees" . . . and they weren't kidding.  Fortunately, we have a lot of them around here in the great Pacific NW.

Posted by Carla Muss-Jacobs, RETIRED (RETIRED / State License is Inactive) about 9 years ago

Chris: Have to agree. When I show homes with great trees in the front or back & I point it out, some buyers look at me like I'm a lunatic. I don't think they realize that 30 foot tree took 50 years to look like that.  I also find the bushes, grass, etc. the most abused part of a home in my area.  It's a low ratio for 'good curb appeal'.  When I'm unlocking the front door, I usually look around & say to myself 'another seller hates bushes for some reason'.

Posted by Lyn Sims, Schaumburg Real Estate (RE/MAX Suburban) about 9 years ago

Wow I had no idea! That's a LOT of value! I'm thinking what I  can do with my place right now! Very interesting post, thanks!

Posted by Sylvie Stuart, Home Buying, Home Selling and Investment - Flagsta (Realty One Group Mountain Desert 928-600-2765) about 9 years ago

Chris, thanks for this.  I HAD NO IDEA!  Of course I've heard about huge landscaping estimates before, but some of your examples are incredible.

Posted by Adam Mallory, Broker, ABR, e-Pro (eBroker Real Estate 619-566-ADAM) about 9 years ago
We had to replace a neighbors mature grapefruit tree (long story), to the tune of $2500! yikes!
Posted by Kathy Schowe, La Quinta, California 760-333-8886 (California Lifestyle Realty) about 9 years ago

I just bought an Naval Orange tree for my yard in a 25 gallon container which cost me $400.00.  I don't think it added value to my home but I will be eating oranges next year.

Posted by Ronald S. Accornero (OC Signature Properties) about 9 years ago

Black walnut trees are worth a lot of money in Southwest Missouri where I am from.  Go Springfield.

Posted by Mike Henderson, HUD Home Hub - 303-949-5848 (Your complete source for buying HUD homes) about 9 years ago

I know location is supposed to be a primary concern when purchasing a property but I have seen many properties sell quickly in less than perfect locations because of the landscape. Here in East Tennessee we love our trees. I bought my home in 1982 because of the mature trees that covered every inch of the property. 29 years later I am still here with all my lovely 100 year+ Oaks. I do not live in the fancy part of town. Most of my neighbors struggle paycheck to paycheck but we all share one thing in common that makes our lives rich and amazing. Rich mature landscapes! We practically live outside in the warm months and stare out the windows on the cold days dreaming of getting back out in the yard. All of East Tennessee offers every imaginable variety of living situations sharing one thing in common. Our wonderful environment which we treasure as if was our precious children. Thank you Chris for your wonderful reminder that location isn't the only thing that makes a property valuable.

Posted by James Pierce (Realty Executives Associates/Knoxville Realty) about 9 years ago

Even though our property is covered with trees, the only one at the homesite was a huge pine. So... as soon as we built the house, we bought and planted more trees! I love them all, but wish I could train that pine tree not to drop those needles and cones all over the yard.

Posted by Marte Cliff, Your real estate writer (Marte Cliff Copywriting) about 9 years ago

Hi Chris,

Trees are beautiful, and when placed at the right spot of the property, where they don't interfere with one's daily life rather enhance it, they are a true joy.

We have one of very few remaining "fruit bearing" mulberry trees in L.A. County right on our curb, at the front of the house. From late April early May till August/September or so, every year, that tree feeds all the birds and people of the West Hills area and making the biggest mess, while doing it. The fruits fall from the actual tree and all the birds' behinds, sorry for the visual, on our driveway and every car that thinks they got lucky to find the parking spot with shade...hahaha. BTW, you better wash it off your car immediately. Needless to say, that tree makes a HUGE mess. However I love it just the same.

@#52 Ronald, Not only will you be eating oranges, and hopefully you freshly squeeze every day like I do, but, you'll be enjoying the aroma of the best fragrance of spring. The citric blossoms have an amazing smell that to me is synonymous with So Cal style living.  

Thanks for the informative post.

Posted by Dimitri Matsis-REALTOR® (818) 599-6083 (Troop Real Estate Inc. Westlake Village CA) about 9 years ago

Thanks for the post.. I agree big mature trees take a long time to grow and certainly are expensive...

Posted by Anonymous about 9 years ago

My sister lives on 19 acres, periodically she sells off some of those trees and makes good money.

Posted by Barbara Tretola (RAC Real Estate Associates, Inc.) about 9 years ago

We looked for a home with mature trees, and bought one. Sadly, within 4 months, a freak snowstorm took many of them down and left the survivors looking amputated. One can still view the scars and odd shapes of the surviving trees when they don't have their leaves. Over time, however, the survivors are beginning to look less freakish when the leaves are on. We replanted trees, but I'll be quite old when they're big and beautiful.

Posted by Julie Babcock -Nook & Cranny Home Inspections (Nook & Cranny Home Inspections Tonawanda, NY) about 9 years ago

Alec, when you include the intrinsic value of trees, it's a win-win in my mind...

Barbara-Jo, in a tough market, it is an option to consider...

Elizabeth, a 100 year old Japanese Maple... wow... for $7500 (and I am talking Cdn) you will not get anything like that...

Posted by Chris Smith, South Simcoe, Caledon, King, Orangeville Real Esta (Re/Max Chay Realty Inc., Brokerage) about 9 years ago

Thanks Chris....

Now I really, really miss my 80 year old plus Canadian Maples that would be bright purplish red right about now...

Here in Vegas... we have Canary Date Palms that can be worth about $1,000 a foot. I had a client buy an old home here in Vegas for $120K that had 20 Canary Date Palms averaging over 15 feet high on the lot... he sold 10 of them to a landscaper at $10K a piece....




Posted by Paul Francis, Las Vegas Real Estate Agent - Summerlin Homes (Francis Group Real Estate) about 9 years ago

Hi Chris,

I had no idea! Thanks for the quick lesson. I will have to start paying more attention to what is planted around my listings. It might help at appraisal time.

Posted by Liane Thomas -Top Listing Agent, Bringing you Home! (Professional Realty Services® International ) about 9 years ago

Very interesting information!  I don't think most homeowners view their trees as having that much potential for increasing their value - thanks for bringing this to light!

Posted by Rhonda Abbott, Wadsworth & Greater Akron, OH (Howard Hanna) about 9 years ago

I haven't read all the comments yet but just wonder how the appraisers value those trees.  It may be a great selling point but as far as increasing the market value of the home...not sure...sure hope so least some of our home owners may get a break.  They certainly could use one.


Posted by June Lewis, Realtor Northwood Realty - New Castle,Pa Lawrence Co 7247304571 (Northwood Realty Services) about 9 years ago

Interesting post Chris, I didn't realize trees could be worth so much, wow!

Posted by Patricia Beck, Colorado Springs Realty (RE/MAX Properties, Inc., GRI, CDPE) about 9 years ago

Chris - Love trees in a yard.  To be honest I had no idea of the value they add financially to a property.  Will keep that in mind when I view homes for potential listing.

Posted by Robert Courtney, Century 21 All Islands, RA, CDPE, MCRE, CIAS about 9 years ago

That is not an issue I have seen come up in real estate.  Most standard insurance policies limit losses to trees and such without a special rider.  I imagine that is what you focus on.

Posted by Gene Riemenschneider, Turning Houses into Homes (Home Point Real Estate) about 9 years ago

This is a great post - I had NO idea how much mature landscaping can add to the value, let alone that someone has a $400 book explaining the details!  I will forward this on to my daughter so she can get to work and take better care of her yard...  :-)


Posted by Ellen Wright Adams, LoansByEllen- Licensed in Oregon (Academy Mortgage.......We are a Equal Housing Lender) about 9 years ago

Way back in 1976 when I took Urban Forestry at Texas A&M University, our group project was to go to Houston and analyze market values of houses to determine if mature trees played any factor in the price of homes. They did. And they still do!

Posted by Not a real person about 9 years ago