How Much Does Outdoor Paving cost?
If you’ve added your own design touch to your interior decor, you may be pleased with the outcome. As this is the place you like to call home, you make sure that your style and personality are fully displayed. Yet what about the outside? You certainly need to “jazz this up” a bit as it is very mundane, so you need to consider laying some outdoor pavers. What is involved in this work, and how much should you expect to pay?
The price range will vary considerably based on the materials chosen, the nature of the terrain, the end purpose and the size of the installation. For something tiny, you can expect to get a quote through Airtasker from as little as $100, but for an average installation, this may increase to about $700. Of course, the more complex your job, the higher you should set your budget.
There are several different materials available for your outdoor paving job, but if you want to be really creative, you can always “mix and match” a couple of them for added effect.
At the lower end of the scale, price-wise, are precast concrete pavers available in various designs and colours.
If the outside of your home features exposed brick without any cladding, then you can replicate this look for your path, patio or driveway as well. This can definitely give your place a more rustic feel.
Some people may choose clay pavers, while others choose the most expensive material and introduce natural stone instead. Limestone is a good “entry-level” solution here, or you may be able to get slate or granite if you really want to push the boat out.
On the other hand, you could install pavers selectively and add a mixed layer of pebbles in between. This will help you create a “stepping stone” effect with precut pavers, or you could go for the free-form look by laying naturally-formed pavers in a certain pattern. There’s nothing to stop you from using brick, stone and concrete in the same installation if you’re feeling particularly creative.
You may need to take additional precautions based on the environment and your end-use. For example, you might have to install a substantial concrete base underneath if your pavers receive heavy traffic or be part of the driveway.
Your contractors may have to use special techniques if you’re dealing with a sloping surface or an otherwise irregular base.
If you are laying pavers around the edge of a swimming pool, you need to include slip-resistant materials for safety purposes.
Expect labour costs to go up significantly if you opt for any irregular installation. In other words, if you want your patio to reflect a particular and possibly intricate pattern, it will take a lot longer to create.
You can also expect to pay more if you want to replicate a particular theme or colour scheme. This may make the materials more difficult to source, and they may have to be shipped from a distance, adding to the base cost.
Make sure that you nail down the total cost of delivery as well, especially if you live in a rather remote location.
Paving work may take a bit longer if the workers have to deal with a sloping surface or if access to the worksite is restricted in any way.
As previously mentioned, concrete is the lowest cost solution and may start at around $40 per square metre, while the highest quality granite pavers may be as much as $100 per square metre.
When it comes to the base, poured concrete is going to add to your budget. If you can use a crushed rock base, this is the best approach, while if you have to introduce concrete, you may have to double your expectation.
Don’t forget some of the finishing costs involved. Once your pavers have been laid down and left to set, they will need to be sealed, and this can add to your cost on a per metre basis.
One way to reduce your budget is to go for the “faux” stone look. Contractors can stamp a pattern on a concrete surface to replicate the look of natural stone, giving you a different result for a much lower price.
Begin by taking measurements and be as accurate as you can. Measure the width and length at each extreme and convert this figure to give you the square metre reading.
Determine the end use for your job. In other words, will your pavers be surrounding a pool, a light-duty path, or a heavy-duty driveway?
What type of paver are you looking for?
What type of base will you have to lay down, given the materials and end-use?
Is the terrain flat, sloping or a mix of both? Are there any difficulties in accessing the site from a materials or equipment point of view?
Will you need to install any purpose-made drainage or dig a separate soakaway?
As reported on Airtasker, the average cost of laying outdoor pavers is between:
Canberra –$106 to $210
Melbourne –$150 to $600
Victoria – $150 to $620
Sydney – $142 to $697
Adelaide – $100 to $500
To get your job done efficiently, safely and within your budget. Some questions to ask include:
what experience do you have in doing this specific type of job?
Do you have any references based on previous work?
Are you licenced?
What insurance do you have?
Is the quote comprehensive, including the base, all the materials, edging and sealing?
Outdoor porcelain pavers are a relatively new addition to the paver product line. They are made from special porcelain clay sent through a kiln and subjected to extremely high temperature. This makes the end product particularly durable and very resistant to water absorption.
You need to exercise some care when laying outdoor paving around a pool. A “higher end” solution such as natural stone may look amazing, but these pavers may be inherently slippery and not as easy to maintain in this environment. Be careful when choosing natural stone slabs, as they can also be a little rough underfoot.
Some people choose permeable resin-bound paving. This comes in a variety of textures and colours to fit in with your style. It feels smooth underfoot and has a fully nonslip surface.
This is something to be careful of, especially if your pavers will extend all the way up to the perimeter of the house. Standing water can easily soak into the walls of the home and cause issues over time. Water can also lead to the growth of algae on top of each slab, which can make the surface slippery and potentially dangerous.
Your approach to drainage will depend on the type of material and installation, particularly if the slabs are permeable or porous. The pavers should be set down with a slight slope for best effect, running away from adjacent walls. A certain amount of moisture will seep through the joints and down into the subsoil.
For much larger areas, you may have to incorporate a purpose-made drainage channel before the base is laid down, and this could be connected to your existing drains or into a soak-away.
You live in a place with a pleasant climate, and you should spend as much of your time outdoors as you can. You need to enjoy that time among pleasant surroundings and install pavers to complement your artistic flair.
There are many outdoor paving contractors on the Airtasker website, and they will provide you with a quote so long as you give them the full specification. Remember to send all the details outlined above to each contractor and compare “like for like.”
Airtasker is a valuable resource to help you determine the actual market rates in your town, city or state and should be your favourite resource before you get down to work.