Thinking of designing and constructing your own patio or driveway? The process is actually a lot simpler than you might think, but as always in DIY, preparation is key.
Thanks to the internet, it’s never been easier to learn DIY. You’ll find a wide range of videos and informational guides to help you in your DIY patio and driveway project.
It also enables you to look online for design inspiration.
To give you a little help, below we’re going to take a look at three things you need to consider before installing a new patio or driveway.
1) Will you need planning permission?
Some types of driveways will require planning permission.
However, that’s only if you’ll be creating a driveway using impermeable materials. That is materials which don’t allow for adequate water drainage. If you’re planning on using permeable materials which allow for drainage, you won’t usually need planning permission.
Similarly, if you’re building a patio, you’ll only typically need planning permission if it’s going to exceed 40cm tall. However, it’s still a good idea to check with your local authorities prior to building a driveway or patio.
Understanding the costs and materials
Once you know you’re legally entitled to build your driveway or patio, it’s really important to consider the costs. Many homeowners underestimate how much it’s going to cost to complete the project.
The costs will vary depending upon which materials you plan on using and whether you’re hiring someone to help you.
It’s not just the paving costs you need to consider, you also need to take into account the costs of laying the membrane, digging down (will you need a mini digger if you’re constructing a driveway?) and then filling it with compacted hardcore.
You may also need to hire a skip to dispose of the old surface and everything you don’t need at the end of the job. If you don’t plan it properly, costs can soon increase.
As for materials, gravel tends to be the cheapest option, though it is more difficult to maintain. Block paving is a great alternative, with real stones being the most attractive, and most expensive choice.
Looking for inspiration
Perhaps the biggest challenge you’ll have when building your own driveway or patio is coming up with the right design.
There are so many to choose from.
It’s a good idea to look online, with Pinterest being by far the best website to visit for driveway paving ideas. Other people have already done the hard work – collecting ideas – you just have to find the right boards.
Check out these for starters.
- Contemporary Paving Patterns
- Patio Paving Ideas
- Patios and Paving
- Gravel Pathway and Driveway Ideas
- Driveway Ideas
- Driveway Ideas
Overall, it’s not that difficult to build your own driveway or patio.
You just need to understand the basics and consider the costs, materials and design before getting started. Of course, you should also ensure you have the right tools at your disposal too.
Look for instructional videos online too as these will provide step by step instructions for DIY amateurs.