Whether you are looking to install a new driveway or maintain your existing one, you will need to know about the average driveway installation cost. Our guide will help you get a better understanding of how much you should expect to pay.
Despite what most homeowners have been led to believe, the cost of building a new driveway doesn’t need to be exceptionally high. Building a new driveway can add a lot of functionality and aesthetic appeal to your home, but you must create and commit to your budget beforehand.
Only then will you be able to harness the many benefits that driveways provide – increased parking space, decreased weed growth, and better overall value for your home. In the following sections, we’ll talk a little more about how to estimate the cost of building a new driveway for your home.
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Types of Driveways – Gravel, asphalt, brick & concrete driveway
These driveways are usually created by dunking a load of gravel and leveling it. Gravel driveways are cheap but require a lot of maintenance to keep them clean and to remove small dust and leaves that gather on your driveway. This type of driveway is not suitable for children because they can choke or dig into your gravel, and the gravel is too sharp for their feet.
Pros and Cons
- Pros: easy to install & maintain, doesn’t crack or sink, can match different house styles.
- Cons: moves easily, gets dusty, requires regular maintenance, does not handle snow well
This type of driveway looks like a tarred road and is constructed by tarring or cementing a gravel sheet. It is much cleaner than gravel driveways, and many agree that it looks better than concrete driveways.
Pros and Cons
- Pros: costs less than concrete, easy to repair, dries fast, adapts to different temperature changes, can last for 20 years
- Cons: Only comes in black, less durable, requires resealing every 3-5 years and resurfacing regularly
This is probably the most popular driveway because who can modify it in several styles to look fantastic. Concrete driveways tend to crack when they aren’t constructed correctly but are durable and easy to clean.
Pros and Cons
- Pros: Durable, lasts more than 40 years, does not require any kind of sealing, available in many colors, no resurfacing.
- Cons: cracks in shallow temperatures, expensive, difficult to repair
Also known as paving, this type of driveway needs to be constructed correctly for a lasting effect. Brick driveways are popular in residential units and can be altered much easier than concrete or asphalt driveways, which can also recycle the bricks into buildings if you decide to change your yard or driveway later. Brick driveways require a lot of de-weeding to ensure plants do not end up damaging your driveway.
Pros and Cons
- Pros: suitable for DIY installation, great variety of textures & colors, easy maintenance, long-lasting (25 years)
- Cons: needs to be sealed & washed, labor-intensive adding onto total cost, sand installation necessary for laying the bricks or cobblestones
Pros & cons of driveway materials (table)
|Asphalt||Gravel||Poured Concrete||Unilock Paving Stones|
|Durability/Strength||Mid||Low||Low – High|
|Resistant to Oil Stains||No||Yes||No|
|Easy to Repair||No||Yes||Yes|
Table borrowed from Unilock.com
Driveway cost guide
In the majority of cases, the overall cost associated with building a driveway will depend on the following factors:
- The total amount of space that the driveway takes up.
- Whether or not you’re going to hire a contractor or a company.
- How many days of work it will take.
- The material that you will use for your driveway.
- The local price of driveway materials.
- The type of driveway that you decide upon.
- The condition of the site.
- Whether landing clearing is required or not.
- The need for special equipment.
A driveway will increase your property’s value which makes it always a good investment. If you are planning to hire a driveway contractor, which is always a good idea if you don’t know how to build the driveway yourself, then make sure that you contact as many contractors as possible to receive quotes for your driveway project.
Below you will find a relatively accurate driveway cost for Gravel, Asphalt, Concrete, and Brick driveways.
Gravel driveways cost
The average cost of a 50 m2 gravel driveway ranges from £1,080 – £1,500. Estimate to pay between £20 – £30 per square meter for a simple overlay and £50 – £60 when digging is also required.
Depending on your requirements, multiple factors can affect the cost of a gravel driveway installation, such as the condition of the site and its size, land clearing, any special equipment, the material, and the amount of work required.
Soil removal cost: from £78 per m3
Geotextile membrane installation: from £2,5 per m2
Adding a sub-base
A base is the foundation of a durable driveway. Therefore, the selection of the right material is of great importance. Depending on the material that will choose expect to pay:
- £150 per m3 for crushed concrete
- £146 per m3 for MOT1
- £450 per m3 for Readymix concrete
Saving Tip: Mix on-site cement costs one-third of the estimated average cost of ReadyMix cement.
Asphalt driveway cost
Homeowners pay on average £3,100 for an asphalt driveway in the UK. Estimate to pay from £1,250 to £3,000 for a 50 m2 asphalt driveway depending on where you live in the country.
An asphalt/tarmac driveway costs on average between £45 – £80 per square meter when excavation work is required. Excavation alone costs around £65 per cubic meter. Anything lower than £45-£60 per m2 is likely to be made of an unauthorized mixture, which will not last more than a few months.
Additional costs to consider:
Soil removal: from £67 per m3
Sub-base: from 150 per m3
Geotextile membrane: £2,5 per m2
Brick driveway cost
Estimate to pay from £3,000 to £5,300 for a 50 m2 brick paved driveway. A very basic brick driveway requiring no base costs on average £45 per m2. The laying course will add from around £7,5 per m2. The total cost per m2 can reach £100, depending on your individual needs. Expect to spend a lot more if you need excavation work and to lay a sub-base.
Concrete Driveways Cost
The average cost of a 50m2 concrete driveway is between £1,750- £2,500. Estimate to pay between £35 – £50 per square meter, including the cost of the excavation.
Depending on your requirements, multiple factors can affect the cost of a concrete driveway installation, such as the condition of the site and its size, land clearing, any special equipment, the material, and the amount of work required.
Soil removal: from £67 per m3
Sub-base: from £150 per m3
Geotextile membrane: £2,5 per m2
Reinforcement: £1-£3 per m3
Finish: £2,8 (troweling), £1,6 (tamped), £6,5 (power float)
Advantages of concrete driveways
Versatile design: Concrete paving slabs are available in a huge number of colors to ensure your home exterior looks appealing. Concrete’s design can also be pattern stamped. Pattern stamping makes the concrete look like brick, tile, cobblestone, or other patterns at a fraction of the cost.
Patterns, textures, and styles: Concrete is available in various patterns and textures, making it far more versatile than other driveway materials, such as tarmac. Concrete slabs come in various sizes; this gives them all the decorative looks and feels, usually with brick, slate, or stone.
Durable: Concrete is incredibly tough and long-lasting. It is not uncommon for a concrete driveway to last thirty years or more with only minimal maintenance; it will need replacement, repair, and refinishing much less frequently than asphalt or gravel driveways. Concrete does not need resurfacing or resealing, and debris such as dirt or snow is easy to clear off the drive.
Cost-efficient: Although the initial costs of installing a concrete driveway are not the cheapest, the low maintenance costs over its lifetime will often mean that it works out cheaper than other driveway materials in the long term.
Eco-friendly: concrete is made of renewable materials and can also be made from recycled materials, making it more eco-friendly than other driveway materials. When a concrete driveway has reached the end of its lifespan, which can recycle it into concrete aggregate.
Safer: concrete has a non-slip surface, making skidding on the driveway less likely than other materials.
Reflect light: some homeowners consider this an added benefit when purchasing a concrete driveway. The ability to reflect light means less electrical lighting is needed to keep your property illuminated at night, which may help deter intruders.
Concrete block driveway cost
A typical CBP driveway can cost between £45 – £70 per square meter. However, the cost of a concrete block driveway will vary depending on the size, the quality of the materials, and the contractor’s individual prices.
Concrete blocks will generally cost around £9,5 per square meter, although this can fluctuate depending on what color and style you opt for, as well as whether you have them pattern stamped.
Block paved driveways vs. concrete driveways
Block paving materials and styles
Block paving first became popular in the 1980s, but there was a minimal choice of styles and colors back then. Simple designs and a few different colors were as exciting as they got! However, since the market for block paving driveways has grown and the manufacturing industry has advanced, so too have the options.
What material should I choose for my block paved driveway?
The choice comes down to concrete or clay, and both have their advantages and disadvantages. Below is a list of the pros and cons for each:
Concrete block paving benefits:
- Lots of shapes to choose from
- Textured blocks available
- Accurate sizes
- Lots of choices when it comes to blocking depth
- Colour fades over time
- Aggregate can become exposed over time
- It Will last for about 20 years
Clay block paving benefits:
- More expensive
- Very hard-wearing
- Natural colors do not fade
- Patterns are available
- Prone to moss growth
- Usually, come only in square or rectangular shapes
- Harder to cut
- More limited choice with block depth
- It Will last for longer
Choosing driveway pavers color
The color of your driveway is quite important, and you will want it to blend in with your house and the rest of its surroundings. There is no definitive guide to choosing a good color scheme, as it will vary from driveway to driveway.
Think about the immediate surroundings; would a red block paving driveway go if you have a light stone cottage? Similarly, would a blue block paving driveway go with a red brick house? Often the most successful looks combine a few colors that complement each other, rather than searching for exact carbon copies or, on the contrary, stark contrasts.
How to choose driveway pavers style
Again, consider your surroundings. If you live in a rural setting in, say, an 18th-century cottage, then a modern, chamfered block pave driveway would probably look a tad bizarre. For a driveway to fit in not only with the house but its surroundings too, spare a little thought about what style of paving you go for. Blocks and bricks can be placed into the following four style categories:
- Standard rectangular
- Special applications
How to choose the right shape of pavers?
Britain has always been a fan of the rectangular look, but many other places around Europe use various shapes. Rectangles have been around forever, so maybe you want something a bit more up-to-date and something you don’t see on every street?
There is a range of different block paving shapes for you to choose from; some of the most common are the W-blocks and the S-blocks; “toothed” shapes have a higher degree of rotational interlock they can stand much heavier traffic than plain old rectangular blocks.
How much does a block paved driveway cost?
For a more accurate idea of the costs involved, contact a few local paving companies. They will be able to come out and give you an estimate and guide you through the various things you need to consider. If you are buying the materials yourself, then head to a big DIY store. If you want cheap and cheerful, you could bit up basic rectangular concrete blocks. Tumble or shaped concrete blocks cost a little more, and clay blocks cost even higher.
Cost of driveway foundations
Putting down a solid foundation for your driveway will ensure that it lasts for a long time. It is best to avoid basic paving since it doesn’t last that long, which will require you to re-construct it later, costing you more money.
It would be best to make a solid investment now to avoid hassles later on down the road. With that being said, here are the costs associated with installing different types of driveway foundations:
Mini-Digger Hire – Between £130 and £160 per week
Skip Hire – Between £20 and £80 per week
Weed Mat – £40 per square meter
8-inch Hardcore Base – £35 to £65 per tonne
Compaction Plate – Hire For £23 to £30 per day
*As long as you’re careful about the materials, driveway type, and contractors that you choose, you shouldn’t have an issue building a driveway that suits all of your budget-related needs.
How to save on driveway costs
Do research: As you can see, the cost of different types of driveways can vary quite a bit. The costs of construction companies can also vary greatly, which could affect the overall driveway cost.
Request quotes: To save on driveway costs, you need to do effective research on all the driveway installation companies so that you can find the most suitable one at the most affordable price.
Planning & budgeting: If you do effective planning and budgeting, then the cost of a new driveway won’t diminish your desire to build it the way you desire.
DIY: With asphalt and concrete driveways, you may be able to save some money by doing some or all the work yourself, aside from having the material delivered.
Use soft materials: If you have a straight driveway with a relatively flat surface, you could save on costs by using loose materials.
How to find the best driveway contractor
Be wary of scamming contractors who might disappear before the task is complete. It would help if you always did proper research on the available driveway contractors to ensure you find a reliable, fast, and cost-effective team to help you construct your new driveway.
The best way to establish whether a company is secure or not is by reading reviews and requesting testimonials so you can spot illegal or scamming companies. Many new companies will use fake photographs and pretend that they are capable of the task when they lack the required skills to lay a driveway effectively. It is much better to invest in companies with good experience in the construction field.