CHARLOTTE – Thinking of upgrading your patio? If so, you are undoubtedly also thinking of replacing your current hardscape materials. When choosing materials for your patio, consider cost, durability and lifespan, style, and installation difficulty particularly if it is a do-it-yourself project.
Pretty much all hardscape materials whether it be concrete pavers, natural stone, wall blocks and even loose patio materials like pea gravel are typically priced by the square foot and sometimes by the linear foot. If you hire a professional for the installation, you’ll be paying for the labor as well as the materials. Sometimes if the job is contracted out you may end up paying for the materials plus your contractor’s mark up. You may find it more cost-effective if you purchase the materials yourself unless your contractor is willing to pass on special contractor pricing he may receive which can be significant compared to the regular retail price.
Durability / Lifespan
Consider the weather conditions in the area you live—an outdoor patio that doesn’t hold up under harsh winters may not be right if you live in the Northeast or Midwest. Also keep in mind that if the ground under your patio shifts at all due to erosion or poor foundation stability, materials like poured concrete, pavers or brick can crack or break.
Match the materials to your house. A natural stone patio might look beautiful for a Colonial-style or rustic-looking home, but might look out of place paired with a more modern or post-modern style home.
Even if you’re planning on hiring a professional, the difficulty of installation most assuredly will affect the overall price of your project. If you enjoy taking on your own projects and definitely want to save money understand that the larger, more complex hardscape jobs can become a financial nightmare if your experience is limited. Some projects can be simple and suitable for the well-meaning do-it-yourselfer. Leave the tougher jobs to the real professionals. It will cost more but it will be worth it.