Building a Patio: Should You Use Concrete or Flagstone?

stylish outdoor kitchen

Homeowners in Salt Lake City can choose between concrete and flagstone as the building material for patios. Concrete costs less than natural stone, although the latter has distinct advantages that make up for the higher price.

It only costs around $8.50 per square feet to build a concrete patio. While maintenance is easy, you should leave the installation to a professional. An improperly installed slab can crack, and you might need restorative work such as concrete lifting. In Salt Lake City, you can spend at least $330 for raising and leveling concrete.

The Price of Concrete

Concrete patios are more common because of the affordable price. You can spend around $417 for a 7×7 patio, which is also known as the bistro size where you can sit while having drinks. Typical terraces measure 12×12 to accommodate a four-seat table. You should expect to spend around $1,225 for the usual size.

More extensive patios have different amenities like a fire pit and outdoor kitchen. It can cost almost $2,450 to build a 16×18 patio. You should consider this one if you often see guests or want to spend more time outdoors. Concrete also can be dyed with a specific tint if you don’t like the natural grey color.

Why Flagstone Isn’t As Common

Flagstone isn’t as popular as concrete since aside from the higher upfront price, a contractor can charge more due to the difficulty of installation. Some homeowners, however, are willing to spend on the material to achieve a unique appearance and style. You can be sure that no other patio will share the same appearance with another one made of flagstone.

A bistro patio can cost around $890. Standard sizes start at almost $2,600 while 16×18 patios can cost nearly $5,200. These prices are twice as high as concrete. You need to choose a decent level of hardness for the material, which ranges from 1 to 10. The hardness refers to its resistance against wear and tear.

An Alternative Building Material

Paver laying driveway pavement out of concrete pavement blocksIf you want a unique look for your patio yet still want to control your budget, then pavers are a good alternative. Pavers can comprise bricks or cobblestone laid out in a specific pattern. Some installations involve pieces that interlock like a puzzle, while others consist of individual sections. You can spend $490 on average for a bistro-size patio made of pavers.

The typical size can cost $1,440 while bigger sizes start at around $2,900. Take note that pavers aren’t as durable as concrete or stone. If you have a swimming pool, you can use pavers for a patio that connects to it. The material is a good choice when you want a non-skid and non-slip surface. Routine maintenance involves sealing and polishing at least once every year and two years, respectively.

Choose concrete for building patios when you like to minimize your expenses. Flagstone is better for those who want a unique look for the space. Whichever you choose, hire a professional to install it for you. Both options aren’t suitable for a DIY project.

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