The Cost of Laying a Patio in London

A new patio in a back garden

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June 11, 2024

Adding a patio to your outdoor space can transform it into a place that you want to relax and unwind, but it’s important to understand the cost of laying a patio in London.

Professional installation comes at a price, especially if you are hiring a landscape gardener, and you need to factor in the cost of patio materials. Below, we have taken a look at the cost of laying a patio in London, giving you an insight into how far your budget will go.

Average Costs for Laying a Patio in London

Cost Per Meter Squared

As a rough estimate, you should expect to pay between £65 and £340 per square metre for a concrete patio in London. For a standard 20 square metre area, the average cost usually ranges from £900 to £2,500. This comprehensive price covers various aspects of the installation process, including excavation, foundation laying, the purchase of paving slabs, and their installation.

The overall cost can vary significantly depending on the type of materials selected. For instance, budget friendly options like concrete and brick patio slabs typically start at £15 per square metre. In contrast, premium materials such as slate can range from £900 to £3,800 for installation, while stone patio options can reach up to £4,600 in total cost.

Total Costs

In London, the average cost of laying a patio typically falls within the range of £550 to £4,600, with a lot of homeowners paying around £1,200 for a small, simple patio. The exact cost will vary hugely depending on the materials used, the size of the patio and the quality of the area. This is why it’s important to look at averages.

Day Rates

Tradesmen in London typically charge around £200 to £300 per day for their labour, including laying a patio. This rate often includes the cost of a general labourer who assists with tasks such as excavation, foundation laying and slab installation.

Hourly Rates

In London, the hourly rates for patio installation services tend to range between £30 to £50 per hour. These rates may vary based on factors such as the complexity of the project, the experience level of the tradesperson, and any additional services required, such as site preparation or landscaping.

Types of Patio Slabs Costs

A house with a rear extension

Concrete Slabs

DescriptionConcrete slabs are versatile and long lasting, which makes them a popular choice for patios in London. They come in various sizes, shapes and textures, making them a good choice for a range of garden styles and designs. They offer durability and are relatively low maintenance. Concrete slabs typically range from £15 to £50 per square metre, depending on the quality, design and finish that you choose.

Natural Stone Slabs

Natural stone slabs – such as sandstone, limestone and granite – boast unique textures and colours, adding a touch of natural beauty to outdoor spaces. They are durable and weather resistant, and they work well with various other natural elements of garden landscaping.

Natural stone slabs can vary widely in price, ranging from £20 to £100 per square metre, depending on the type of stone and its quality.

Porcelain Slabs

Porcelain slabs offer a sleek and modern look to patios, and they are popular among homeowners who want a chic and stylish patio finish. They are highly durable, scratch resistant, and come in a wide range of colours and patterns. On average, porcelain slabs tend to be on the higher end of the price scale, typically ranging from £40 to £100 per square metre.

Brick Pavers

Brick pavers exude a classic charm and warmth, perfect for traditional or rustic style patios. They are durable, easy to install and offer excellent traction. They are also one of the most affordable patio slab options, making them a worthwhile consideration if you are on a budget.

Brick pavers are relatively affordable, with prices ranging from £20 to £60 per square metre, depending on the quality and style.

Travertine Slabs

Travertine slabs feature a unique natural texture and warm tones, ideal for creating an elegant and timeless patio. They are durable and resistant to heat and moisture, making them a long lasting investment. Travertine slabs are considered to be one of the most premium options and they typically range from £30 to £100 per square metre.

Flagstone

Flagstone slabs – which are usually made of sandstone or limestone – have a rustic and irregular shape, adding character to outdoor spaces. They are durable and naturally slip resistant, making them an excellent choice if you plan to use the patio in wet or icy weather. Flagstone prices vary depending on the type of stone and its quality, with prices typically ranging from £20 to £80 per square metre.

Interlocking Concrete Pavers

Interlocking concrete pavers offer versatility and ease of installation, thanks to their interlocking design. They come in various colours, shapes and patterns, allowing for endless design possibilities. These are popular with homeowners, and they are one of the most affordable patio slab options. Interlocking concrete pavers are a cost effective option, with prices typically ranging from £20 to £50 per square metre.

Types of Patio Costs

There are different types of patios to choose from, all of which have a slightly different cost, depending on the materials used.

  • Raised Patio – The average cost of a raised patio in London is between £70 and £90 per square metre.
  • Ground-Level Patio – On average, a ground level patio in London costs between £60 and £90 per square metre.
  • Multi-Level Patio – You should expect to pay between £60 and £200 per square metre for a multi-level patio in London.
  • Floating Patio – The average cost of a floating patio in London varies from £80 to £250 per square metre.
  • Sunken Patio – The cost of a sunken patio in London ranges from £70 to £220 per square metre.
  • Rooftop Patio – The cost of a rooftop patio in London is between £90 to £300 per square metre.

Costs Breakdown

A patio with furniture

Labour Costs

The average labour costs for laying a patio typically include hiring a landscape gardener, with daily rates averaging around £100. However, since the installation process often requires the assistance of a general labourer, the combined daily cost can amount to an average of £200 per day. The duration of the installation varies depending on the size of the patio.

For example, a small patio measuring 10 square metres usually takes around 2 days to complete, with labour costs totaling approximately £400. In contrast, a larger patio spanning 20 square metres may require about three days to install, resulting in labour expenses of approximately £600 for two tradesmen.

Material Costs

The cost of material depends on the type of slabs that you choose, as prices can range from £15 to £100 per square metre.

Equipment Hire

If you need to hire equipment to lay your patio, you will need to factor the cost into your budget. The average cost of hiring a cement Mixer is £30 to £50 per day, a power saw is £40 to £70 per day and a plate Compactor is £50 to £80 per day. The total cost will depend on how much equipment you need to hire.

Skip Hire

The cost of skip hire in London varies depending on the type and size of the skip needed. You can expect to pay between £100 and £300 per day.

Site Preparation

Site preparation is a key part of the patio laying process. On average, you should budget between £150 and £300 per day for excavation, between £200 and £400 per day for foundation work, and £250 and £500 per day for landscaping.

Factors That Affect Costs

Type of Material Used

The choice of material used for a patio significantly influences the overall cost of the project. Common patio materials include concrete, natural stone, brick pavers and porcelain, each varying in price per square foot. While concrete tends to be the most affordable option, natural stone such as flagstone or slate can be significantly more expensive, but they tend to offer a higher end finish.

Patio Size and Shape

The size and shape of the patio directly impact the total cost of installation. Larger patios require more materials and labour, resulting in higher costs. Irregularly shaped patios or those with intricate designs may also incur additional expenses, due to the complexity of installation. The more time and labour involved in laying a patio in London, the more expensive the project will be.

Design Complexity

The complexity of the patio design – including patterns, borders and inlays – can affect the cost of labour and materials, and therefore the overall cost of laying a patio. Intricate designs or custom features often require more time and expertise to execute, contributing to higher overall costs. You also might have to pay more for the skill and experience of a tradesman who is capable of executing complex designs.

Accessibility

The accessibility of the patio location plays a role in the total installation cost, especially if the area is hard to reach. Difficult to reach areas or sites with limited access for construction equipment may require additional labour or specialised techniques, increasing project expenses. If the area of the patio installation is easy to access, the entire project is simpler, and the lower cost will reflect this.

Site Preparation Requirements

Some sites need more preparation than others, and few are automatically ready for laying a new patio. The condition of the site before patio installation can impact costs. Sites with uneven terrain or poor drainage may require extensive excavation, grading or drainage solutions to ensure proper installation and longevity of the patio. Additionally, the removal of existing structures or vegetation might be necessary. This requires time and labour, which increases the costs.

Landscaping

The landscape and existing features surrounding the patio site can influence project costs. For example, patios located in areas with mature trees or extensive landscaping may require careful planning and additional work to minimise damage to surrounding vegetation or structures, resulting in higher costs. Integrating landscaping elements such as retaining walls, flower beds or lighting can add to the overall project expenses.

The Process

The process of laying a patio involves several key steps, all of which are designed to ensure a durable and visually appealing outdoor space.

  • Planning and Design – The first step in the laying a patio process is to plan and design the patio layout according to your preferences and site conditions. This includes determining the size, shape and location of the patio, as well as selecting the desired materials and design features.
  • Site Preparation – Once the design is finalised, the site is prepared for construction. This may involve clearing the area of vegetation, removing existing structures or debris, and excavating the ground to create a level surface for the patio sub-base. This gives your chosen tradesperson a blank canvas to work on.
  • Base Installation – A sturdy base is essential for supporting the weight of the patio and ensuring proper drainage. Otherwise, you could run into a problem or two further down the line, especially during the wet winter months. Usually, a layer of compacted gravel or crushed stone is spread evenly over the excavated area to create a stable foundation.
  • Edging Installation – Edging materials such as bricks, pavers or timber are installed along the edge of the patio to define its boundaries and prevent the pavers from shifting over time. This provides clear boundaries of where the patio extends to.
  • Paver or Slab Installation – The pavers or patio slabs are carefully laid in the desired pattern or design, starting from one corner and working gradually across the entire patio area. Proper spacing between the pavers is maintained using plastic spacers or sharp sand, ready for them to be joined at a later date.
  • Cutting and Trimming – As the pavers or slabs are installed, they may need to be cut or trimmed to fit the layout and accommodate any curves or irregularities in the design. Trimming and cutting them to the perfect size means that there are no gaps or wasted space on the patio.
  • Compaction and Levelling – Once all the pavers or slabs are in place, the surface is compacted using a mechanical compactor to ensure stability and prevent settling. The patio is then checked for levelness, and any necessary adjustments are made.
  • Jointing and Sealing – Next, joint sand is swept into the gaps between the pavers or slabs to secure them in place and prevent weed growth. The surface may also be sealed with a protective sealant to enhance durability and weather resistance, depending on the materials used.
  • Finishing Touches – Finally, any remaining details are added, such as adding decorative borders, installing lighting or drainage features to finish the project. It’s also important to clean the patio to ensure a perfect finish.

DIY Vs Hiring a Professional

When it comes to laying a patio, whether to DIY or hire a professional is a decision that requires careful consideration of various factors. There are pros and cons to both approaches, which we have outlined below.

A pation with garden table and chairs

The Pros of Hiring a Professional

  • Expertise and Skill – Professional patio installers have the necessary skills, training and experience to ensure high quality workmanship and long lasting results. When you are investing money into a landscaping or home improvement project, it’s important to have the peace of mind that the investment is worth it.
  • Time Saving – Hiring professionals can speed up the project timeline, as they have the manpower and equipment to complete the job efficiently. This means that you can enjoy your patio a lot sooner, without any delays due to your other responsibilities.

The Cons of Hiring a Professional

  • Added Cost – Hiring a professional can be more expensive than doing it yourself due to labour and overhead costs. Paying a patio tends to be more affordable when you handle things yourself.
  • Reliance on Others – When you hire a professional, you have to coordinate schedules and communicate effectively with tradesmen, which can sometimes lead to delays or miscommunications. You are at the mercy of their schedule and have to work your project around their other responsibilities.
  • Less Control – While professionals bring expertise to the project, you may have less control over the process and final outcome compared to DIY projects. When you hand things over to a professional, the outcome of your patio project is in their hands.

The Pros of DIY Patio Laying

  • Cost Savings – One of the primary reasons homeowners opt for a DIY approach is to save money on labour costs associated with hiring a professional. You don’t need to factor in the cost of hiring an expert, which can quickly add up, especially for larger projects.
  • Sense of Accomplishment – Completing a patio project on your own can provide a sense of satisfaction and pride in your craftsmanship. If you have some DIY experience, completing a patio laying project can develop your skills further, giving you a sense of pride.
  • Flexibility – DIY projects allow you to work at your own pace and make adjustments as needed without relying on a tradesperson’s schedule. If you have other commitments, you can simply work the project around those.

The Cons of DIY Patio Laying

  • Lack of Expertise – Patio installation requires specialised knowledge and skills, which you are unlikely to have, even if you do have experience of other DIY jobs. This lack of experience can lead to subpar results or costly mistakes.
  • Time Consuming – DIY projects often take longer to complete than professional ones, especially for inexperienced individuals. This can be annoying if you have a strict deadline, or if you want to use your new patio as soon as possible.
  • Limited Warranty – If issues arise with your patio in the future, you are unlikely to be covered by warranties or guarantees, which are provided by many professionals. When you hire a professional, you can relax, knowing that you can contact them if something were to go wrong.

Planning Permission

In the UK, you typically don’t need planning permission to lay a patio if it’s at ground level and covers an area of less than five square metres. However, there are some exceptions and regulations to consider, especially if the patio is part of a larger landscaping project or if it involves significant alterations to the property.

It’s always advisable to check with your local authority or consult a professional to ensure compliance with any relevant regulations before starting the project. If you start a project without planning permission, and later find that you need planning permission, you could find yourself having to undo the work or pay a hefty fine.

Finding Someone to Lay a Patio

Finding the right person to lay a patio in London can seem like a daunting task, but with the right approach, it can be simple and straightforward.

The Page

At The Page, we have simplified the process of finding a tradesman for our patio project in London. The entire process is designed with you in mind, as we believe that finding a professional should be quick and easy.

Let The Page send you a free bespoke shortlist of tradespeople suited to you and your job.

When you’re in need of a skilled tradesman, simply send us your enquiry, and we’ll take care of the rest. We match you to a curated list of tradesmen who are perfectly suited to your job requirements.

But, we don’t stop there, as every tradesman in our network is personally met and vetted and their previous work is thoroughly assessed. This means that you can choose any of our experts, knowing that your project is in skilled and capable hands. With us, you can trust that you’re in safe hands every step of the way.

You can also find somone by asking friends, family or neighbours for recommendations. Referrals often lead to reliable professionals, and you can book someone knowing that they have provided a good service to someone else.

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