Concrete products move.
We have had one month of the new year and customers are swinging more towards concrete products from LaCotta and Smartstone than the traditional clay pavers from companies like Corobrick. I used to get 6 out of 10 inquiries for clay and the balance was a spread across the board for 6 concrete suppliers.
Pool paving with LaCotta 3 size cobble paving
The type of finish that seems to be the trend at the moment is the 3 different size pavers. Most of the concrete brick suppliers manufacture the paving bricks in a range of colours with a light brownish yellow (sandstone) being the current favourite. The main key here is to ensure that the bricks are S.A.B.S or there could be a problem with colour or the actual finish could be warped.
3 size flagstone pavers
In a paving site recently we were asked to do the paving around a swimming pool with the clients bricks that he obtained from a friend that manufactures bricks. The bricks were so out of shape that we rather walked off the job. The long term result would have been a bad reflection on our company name. We told the client what we were concerned with but he had total faith in his friend and would not even consider an alternative brick.
Flagstones and clay combined
These concrete pavers are more expensive than their clay counterparts but give a very up market finish. I suggest that you look at a couple of finished paving projects or closer in photographs to see if you like any particular style and then get samples to choose the correct colour. For more help and assistance phone me on 084 300 4220.
The one area around a house that really takes a pounding is the driveway paving. This often-neglected area is the first item seen by potential buyers when looking to buy a house. Driveway paving is not often seen to be deteriorating until it starts to fall apart and then it is a deterrent to any potential buyer. Paving is subliminal and either attracts or repels people from a house.
Tuscan clay paving bricks from Corobrick
There are certain bricks that are designed to enhance the appearance of any house plus many are designed to take the punishment that it needs to take. Then there are some very attractive bricks that are just not suited to being laid on a driveway. I always suggest people that are about to embark on driveway paving to call a couple of companies in to quote but ask each one for their preference and then ask the next company their thoughts on that suggested brick. You will soon know who is just out to get your order and who has your interest at heart.
Infraset cobble paving with double border.
My personal preference for driveway paving is clay. Clay is a natural product that expands when hot and contracts when cold. It has a very pleasing appearance when finished and will always increase the value of any house. Installation of clay pavers will mean that the installation company will use rubber expansion strips to ensure that the paving can breath. It is almost like you have a living breathing driveway with the potential to last for decades.
Clay paving done with Corobrick
Clay paving has been the preferred choice around swimming pools and to this day you will find more than 65% of new pools being installed with clay paving around the perimeter. I would just like to stress at this point that the installation of any paving is not as simple as it may sound, there are installation procedures that need to be followed if the paving is to last. See one of our previous articles on this blog regarding paving installation. Good luck and God bless you, Richard 084 300 4220
Paving designs are personal.
Designing the paving for your house can be very simple and at the same time very complex. Nothing is more bland or none appealing than paving that is laid everywhere with no natural grass or flower beds visible. If we remember that paving needs to increase the value of the house, paving then deserves more attention than just calling in a contractor and going with the cheapest quote.
If we truly want to maximize our investment, it is always good advice to have a landscaper first lay out the garden areas and assist with the areas that should be paved. A word of warning, “ always call a paving company to do your paving, no matter who advises you otherwise.” Some landscapers have paving companies that they prefer to work with because of their history of working together while others will simply lay out the areas to be paved and then leave it up to the house owner to finalize the paving. Either way, you should give the paving style and the paving brick the same amount of consideration that you did with the entertainment area or the location of the pool.
Create a style of your own
There are a lot of home owners that prefer to do their own landscaping ideas and that is great. There are plenty of ideas on the internet regarding how to landscape a garden and if you spend a little time you will save a lot of money getting to grips with the art of landscaping. But which ever way a person goes, remember that paving and gardening increase any investment if done correctly. I would again like to emphasize that you don’t have to install very expensive bricks to increase the return on investment, often a cheaper clay brick will enhance a property far more than an imitation rock made with cement/concrete.
It is in most cases ethically better to keep with a similar type of brick on the driveway, pathways and pool areas as it comes across as “patchwork” when different types of paving stones/bricks are used at different areas. Even when the same colour is used on a different size or different shape bricks at different areas, the impression is often still one of patchwork. Not that different bricks cannot be used at different places, just ask for samples or pictures where similar paving was laid to get a better picture of how the end product will look.
Paving is the first thing you see when arriving home and the last item you see when leaving, so designing the paving should and does deserve professional assistance to ensure that it becomes a return on investment and not a costly mistake. There are many types of paving bricks that fit into most budgets, so don’t think that calling in a professional paving company/person is going to be costly, it could save you a bundle of money and give you the look and feel that your house deserves.