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HillTop Tree Service Handles Tree Removal and Much More

Writer / Angela Cornell

Photography Provided 

Having grown up around a family-owned sawmill, Derrick Harter has always known that he wanted a job that would allow him to spend time outside. 

“I don’t like being cooped up in a factory,” he says. 

After spending a few years cutting lumber, Harter decided to open his own business, HillTop Tree Service. Now, 16 years later, Harter and his team offer tree and shrub trimming and removal, cabling, stump removal, fence row clearing, and yard grading.

Thanks to servicing a 45-mile (and growing) area around Akron, Indiana, HillTop Tree Service would not be possible without Harter’s crew – Jason Lozano, James Lozano, Matt Keith and Damion Franklin. 

“We get along like a family,” Harter says. “Not everyone is related, but we do have that mentality.” 

The team has a combined 45 years of experience in tree removal and landscaping.

Very few trees are too difficult for the company’s crew to deal with, especially since one of the crew members, Jason Lozano, specializes in climbing. 

“A lot of times you’re working in places you can’t get a bucket truck into – they have a septic in the way or it’s a lakefront property,” Harter says. “So a climber is almost a necessity to tree service.”

Harter and his crew pride themselves on providing excellent customer service from the very first phone call. As soon as they connect with a new client, they establish a time to meet and explain what the job will entail. 

When the crew meets a client face to face and Harter has a chance to asses a project, he explains the job in more detail. 

“We’ll meet with them at the property and determine what they’re wanting to do, and advise them,” Harter explains. “If they decide that they want to do the project with us, we’ll schedule it.”

At each job, Harter and his crew are devoted to providing their customers with an excellent experience, especially when it comes to their cleanup after the job – something that is clear from customer reviews on social media. 

“We offer one of the best cleanups in the industry,” Harter says. “We make sure that the homeowners don’t have anything that needs to be done when we leave.” 

They crew even goes as far as to truck in topsoil and patch up any holes in a yard made by falling limbs.

 On the rare occasion that they receive a complaint, they deal with it as soon as possible. 

“If somebody’s got a problem, we usually go out and get it addressed,” Harter says.

Once a tree is down, the staff at HillTop Tree Service will mulch as many of the branches as they can, and typically deliver it to those who have fruit trees in the area. They also make a lot of firewood. Both products are available to HillTop Tree Service customers. 

“They call our number and we make arrangements with them to get some chips or firewood,” Harter says.

Tree and shrub maintenance and removal are not the only services the business offers. During the winter months, they provide snow removal for businesses in the Akron and Rochester areas. 

The company even offers emergency services – something that their customers deeply appreciate after experiencing wind or storm damage. 

“Typically, we remove trees from houses or structures of any kind,” Harter says, adding that the business can also help customers by filling out insurance claims.

HillTop Tree Service is located at 9553 East State Road 14 in Akron, and their office hours are Mon. through Sat. 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. To get a free estimate for your tree project, call 574-377-2478 or email Derrick Harter at derrickjharter@yahoo.com. Visit hilltoptreeservice1.com to learn more about the company’s services, view testimonials, and more.

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