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All researchers at Family Tree In A Week are proud members of the Association of Professional Genealogists.
Personal Family History Report
How much does it cost?
Your personal family history report is $195. This is a one-time fee, not a subscription, and it is inclusive of all the research that goes into producing the report. If you want to order optional add-ons such as a fan chart, boys’ and girls’ names report, and media images, those are available at checkout for a small extra charge.
We also offer family history research by the hour. Contact us for more information.
How far back in my genealogy will you go?
That depends a lot on you and a lot on your ancestors. It depends on you because the more complete and accurate information you give us about your ancestors to start our research, the deeper we can go into your family tree and the faster we can go there.
It depends on them because the longer they stayed in one place and the more active and public their lives, the quicker we can uncover reliable, high quality information about them. The shapes of our customers’ family trees are as different as the families themselves.
Bottom line: If we can’t get back at least to your great-great-grandparents, we’ll initiate a refund without your having to ask us to.
What are the benefits of researching my family tree broadly?
Some customers prefer us to research their tree broadly rather than deeply. In other words, they don’t just want to know about their direct ancestors (grandparents). They’re just as interested to know their ancestors’ siblings (grand-aunts and uncles and cousins).
This can be interesting and helpful for several reasons:
- It can help show the connection between your family and other families. Maybe there’s an old legend in your family that you’re related to a famous person or family of the past. Could be! But that connection might be through marriage or in a family line that goes through one of your grand-aunts or uncles. A broad search improves the odds of identifying your famous aunt or uncle (by marriage) or cousin.
- Whereas a deep search helps us understand how your family has changed over time – their geography, occupations, favorite names, social status – a broad search can help you get a better sense of your family’s unique characteristics and relationships as a whole. Breadth is necessary to get the complete picture of your family in history.
- A broad search is helpful, and often necessary, to making progress on a deep search. When your direct ancestors’ trails run cold, taking a detour by tracing a parallel line of your ancestry can help you blaze a trail deeper into your family’s past.
- If you want to make contact with distant relations such as cousins several times removed or second, third, or fourth cousins, a broad search can help you identify present-day relatives you don’t even know exist. Who knows if you’re already Facebook friends with a distant cousin!
Normally, we take a balanced approach between breadth and depth in researching our customers’ family trees. We go deep as far as we can, while also collecting data about immediate siblings of your ancestors, and then we branch out to see if that can take us deeper into your lineage. If you prefer us to take a primarily broad approach to your research, please be sure to tell us.
How is Family Tree In A Week different than Ancestry.com?
We’re different in a lot of ways:
- With us, you don’t need a subscription to any online sites. We gather facts about your family history from a variety of sources and compile it all into a fascinating PDF book for you and your family to enjoy. You’ll probably want to continue your research, either yourself or with a full-service genealogy research firm, and so we will also provide you with a GEDCOM file you can use with a paid site. It has all the information we have pieced together about your heritage.
- We provide much better support than subscription sites. With certain sites, for example, if you need help with your $45/month subscription, your only choice is to “ask the community.” Good luck making contact with an employee!
- Online sites vary widely in quality. Some are free, some require a subscription. Many of the free sites are badly maintained or have message boards with discussion about certain family lines, but the chances that you’ll find anything useful about your particular family tree are slim.
- The subscription sites can have a lot of helpful information and be a lot of fun. But, they take time to learn how to use. If you accept a free trial, you better remember to cancel it before you find a charge for the next three months on your bank or credit card statement. (Where was that phone number to cancel again … ?) And, of course, it depends on your available free time to work on your own genealogy. Maybe you have time right now, or this weekend, but will you really have time to devote to it consistently over the next 30 or 90 days? With Family Tree In A Week, you pay a one-time fixed price and then return to your normal life. We send you results which you may then use as a jumping off point for your own research or hand over to an advanced researcher to continue with.
How are you different than other genealogy researchers?
Our work complements the work of our genealogy researchers:
- We specialize in blazing trails into American family trees that have never been explored by our customers. Other genealogists may specialize in other areas, such as particular ethnicities or geographies, or be generalists.
- Other professional researchers usually want to conduct an extensive interview with you to get starting information for their research, determine research goals, and set expectations about what they will deliver. Often they prefer to go through this with you before they will even give you an estimate of their fees. With us, you know up front what your fixed price is.
- Full-service genealogy services ordinarily take many weeks before giving you results. We turn your results around much more quickly, in a time frame that you choose.
- Our fees are substantially lower than others. Ancestry.com’s ProGenealogist service starts at $2,300, and then they go on to list a multitude of factors that can increase your cost. Many genealogists won’t work with you if you won’t commit to spending at least $1,000 in fees. This might be necessary if you’re carefully trying to document your ancestry to join the Daughters of the American Revolution or prove your right to inherit an estate, but for most of us who just want to understand our family heritage, that kind of painstaking specialist research is overkill. Family Tree In A Week is different. If you start with Family Tree In A Week and want to extend your research, you can take the information and GEDCOM file we provide you to a specialist to save hours of preliminary work (and fees).
What do I get when you’re done?
When we’re all done, we’ll e-mail you to let you know and also send a PDF with all the results of our research. The average report is about 100 pages. It contains your paternal and maternal ancestry and a narrative of your family history with lots of information about your ancestors. It has extended family trees showing aunts, uncles, and cousins, indexes of important anniversaries by month and day, a year-by-year timeline of events in your family’s history, statistics, and suggestions about how to advance our research on your own.
Depending on which optional add-ons you order, you will also receive boys’ and girls’ names in your family, a colorful fan chart, and full-resolution images of historical source documents we uncover – typically census documents, passport applications, passenger lists, certificates of birth, marriage, and death, draft cards, and that sort of thing. Sometimes we even find photographs of your ancestors.
How can I publish my report as a book?
Lulu.com and Blurb.com are just two of many services that can help you publish your report as a book in a wide variety of formats and bindings.
Can you research a specific great-great-great-grandmother?
Our service is tailored to people who are just getting started learning about their ancestry or who don’t have the time or inclination to do it themselves. Our research always starts with our customers’ grandparents or great-grandparents and expands out from there. We don’t focus on a specific family line or individual among your ancestors. If you’re a do-it-yourself-er and need help with a particular ancestor or line, we recommend you contact a full-service genealogy professional for advanced research.
If my family recently immigrated to the United States, can you help me?
We would love to help you, but we think you’ll be better served by other genealogists who specialize in your family’s country of origin. We suggest that you consider one of the specialized genealogy services we list or another one of your own choosing.
How can I get a refund if I’m not satisfied?
Easy. Contact us and ask for one. You will get one within just a few days. If you’re not satisfied with our work for any reason whatsoever, we will refund 100% of your money unconditionally. Let’s take it a step further: if we aren’t satisfied with the results of our research for you, even if you say nothing, we will refund your money on our own initiative.
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