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Patios are often the final touch to creating a cozy, welcoming outdoor space in your backyard or garden. These multi-purpose outdoor spaces can be used for everything from an afternoon of private relaxation to hosting an extravagant dinner party. Depending on your needs and budget, you can opt to keep costs low by building a simple concrete patio, or choose to splurge by adding firepits, BBQ grills and even water features.
Patio Installation Cost Estimate
|Patio Installation Cost Estimate
|$3,000 - $5,500
|$500 - $1,000
Cost of a Patio
You can expect to pay between $1,000 and $5,000 for a new ground-level patio. This range of cost is due to the multiplicity of design factors, including the size, materials used, labor fees and accessories. If any preparation must be done before installation, like grading, leveling or removal of an old patio, this fee will also be factored into the final cost. Most contractors will offer a free cost estimate of your project if you ask.
|Material Cost Estimate (per square foot)
|$1.50 - $4
|$4 - $8
|$11 - $30
|$0.50 - $10
|$0.50 - $10
Gravel is, on average, the cheapest material for a patio and requires the least time to install. It can match well with a less landscaped, wilder garden or backyard, and offers great drainage. However it is not very comfortable underfoot and can be hard to keep level.
A poured concrete slab is highly versatile and inexpensive. It can be shaped however you choose and offers a great base for any future flooring or accessory installations (for example glazed tile or a dining table). Concrete slabs can feature a variety of finishes and designs, but you can also keep the classic, no-frills concrete look if you place a high value on utility.
Flagstone is another classic, timeless patio material. The usually large floor pieces are made from natural stone and are therefore quite heavy, with professional installation highly recommended. Flagstone comes in a variety of colors and shapes, meaning you can find both regular squares or rectangles and more irregular “shard” shapes. Note that depending on what type of stone is used, there may be specific maintenance requirements, so research accordingly.
Brick pavers are an easy DIY install. They are durable, classic-looking, easy to replace and come in a variety of shapes and colors. One appeal of brick is that it can easily be utilized to create elaborate patterns or pictures on your patio. Herringbone, basketweave and concentric circles are all common patterns.
Other Types of Pavers
Also known as paving stones, pavers are an extremely common choice for patios. Made from stones, concrete, clay or brick, pavers come in a variety of styles and colors and offer an almost endless range of pattern possibilities. Manufactured specifically for use in patios and walkways, pavers have great durability and are low maintenance.
Sand, slate and tile are all examples of other materials that can be used to create a patio or backyard space. Sand is a fairly inexpensive option, depending on where you live, but may require regular maintenance in order to stay free from debris while slate and tile can be quite expensive but easier to maintain.
|Patio Design Average Cost Range Estimate
|$1,500 - $5,400
|$2,000 - $6,600
|Covered Patio (including cover)
|$3,000 - $20,200
These patios are exactly what it says on the tin: patios built level with the ground. They are by far the most common type of patio and the easiest to install, no matter the material.
Raised patios are built elevated above the ground. Sometimes this is an aesthetic choice—raised patios offer slightly more elegance and depth than ground level patios—but it can also be a practical one if you want your patio to be level with the door to your house or if your house is built on a slope. Raised patios are more expensive, time-consuming and complex to build, since retaining walls, caps and other reinforcements must be built as well.
If you want protection from the elements, or simply a cozier vibe, a covered patio will meet all of your needs and then some. Covered patios can be attached to your home or free-standing and can be built at ground level or raised. A covered patio is more expensive than an uncovered patio since you are also paying for construction of any structures and for the cover itself. However, if inclement weather is your enemy or you are investing in nice accessories and appliances, a covered patio will be worth the extra cost.
Additional Factors Impacting Cost
Size and Shape
The larger the size of your patio, the more it will cost. More complex patio shapes (i.e. not a square or rectangle) may also add time and money to the project.
Appliances and Accessories
One of the perks of having a patio is that you can decorate it the way you like. For some, this means installing space for a fire pit, various walkways, a hot tub or even an outdoor kitchen. For others, this simply means purchasing some nice outdoor furniture and decorative plants. Regardless, anything significant you add to your patio should be discussed with your contractor and is guaranteed to add additional costs to your project’s final bill.
As you consider adding lights or an outdoor mini-refrigerator to your patio (or anything in between), you will also need to install the accompanying infrastructure. It is possible to connect your patio to your home’s plumbing, electricity and gas, but the extra modifications and installations will cost you.
You will also likely need to bring in independent specialists—Like an electrician—along with your patio contractor. Your contractor will more than likely know a good tradesman to recommend to you.
If you want your patio to integrate seamlessly with your garden (planned or real), it is a good idea to hire a landscape specialist. A specialist can help you understand which materials will look best with your garden and what kind of drainage you need. Landscape professionals are also essential if you plan on installing a water feature, like a fountain or a pond.
Dirt Work and Grading
In order to lay down a patio, it is necessary to first prepare the substrate. The ground’s surface must be leveled, any objects removed and any necessary modifications for drainage and grading must then be made. Depending on where you live, this can either be a quick, painless and inexpensive process or a long, loud, expensive one.
Always consult with a professional to determine what preparations must be done. A bad grade can mean a complete rebuild much sooner than you hope.
Permits and Fees
In some areas, installing a patio or structure in your backyard may require additional city permits. These must be acquired and paid for before construction can begin, so consult with your local government for more information.
DIY vs. Professional Installation
Professional labor costs for a patio often come out to around $40 to $80 per hour, or $4 to $12 per square foot, depending on the complexity of the project and what additional equipment or materials must be used.
While it is possible to do a DIY install of your new patio, take into consideration the complexity of your project. If you are simply adding a ground-level concrete slab or gravel patio, DIY installation may be less hassle and more cost-effective than hiring a professional. Even simple brick patios can fall into this category.
If you are using expensive pavers or materials to build your patio, however, consider hiring a professional instead, as they will know how to properly handle the materials in order to install your new patio correctly.
You should also consider professional installation if your patio is going to be raised or covered, a nonconventional shape or will require infrastructure installations for outdoor appliances or features (for example: electricity or heated walkways). Similarly, always consult with a professional about any ground preparation—leveling, drainage, etc.—that might be necessary.
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