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Old 06-01-2010, 11:40 AM
 
424 posts, read 2,129,237 times
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which would you choose? It's about a 12x12 area, right along-side the house. We will eventually add a door from the kitchen to access it, but would like to have the patio/deck done sooner because we'll enjoy it now.

So which is best: to pour concrete, lay down paver stones, or build a wooden deck? Which is cheapest, which is most DIY friendly (we're not hiring anyone but friends paid in food), which holds up well, and mostly-- which do people prefer? What do you think looks nice and would you like to see if you were interested in buying my house down the line?

I am leaning toward paver stones, but this is the option I know the least about doing. The look awesome at my mom's house, but not sure if I could do as nice of a job.

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Old 06-01-2010, 12:54 PM
 
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They all their benefits and draw backs. I would say the easiest would be a wooden deck, but it will require periodic maintenance to keep it nice and it will eventually need to be replaced.

Paver stones are great and look nice, but they can shift over time with the ground below them and although you can prevent a lot of weeds from growing using proper landscape fabric and base stones, weeds can grow through and moss can be an issue if it's moist.

Concrete would require about the same amount of effort as pavers, but if done right would last virtually forever and require little to no maintenance. The problem with concrete is it isn't as attractive as the other options.

I'm actually going to be redoing the deck I have behind my house next year, but have started looking at options. The deck is old and would need a lot of work to fix up and make nice again. I have decided on going with a concrete patio and then topping that with the "click deck" tiles. I get the benefit of the resillience and low maintenance of concrete and can customize the look anyway I want with the tiles. The tiles run anywhere from $50 - $100 for a box of 10 12"x12" tiles, so you get about 5 sq.f.t per box.

In my case I plan on removing the old deck myself and then paying to have the concrete patio poured and then doing the click deck tiles myself.
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Old 06-01-2010, 12:58 PM
 
Location: Connecticut
27,663 posts, read 43,648,328 times
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For DYI, I would go with pavers. They look great and are somewhat easy to put down. Poured concrete would be cheaper but is hard for a DYI unless you have had previous experience. As for decks, I will NEVER do one again. They are a maintenance headache and I really do not think they look all that nice unless you spend big $$$. JMHO, Jay
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Old 06-01-2010, 04:07 PM
 
Location: Pomona
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Cost ... concrete is cheapest, wood (redwood or composite) most expensive.
Maintenance ... concrete is least, wood is most.
DIY friendliness ... pavers is by far the easiest, with wood being next, and concrete is toughest, at least for good results.
Flexibility ... pavers, whether it's adding, removing, or reconfiguring. Wood and concrete can be easy enough to add onto, but not so easy to remove or reconfigure.
Appeal ... pavers and wood can look very stunning. Concrete ... that takes work to make it look beyond the typical gray slab.

In your case, being DIY-ability being a major concern, I'd look into pavers. A masonry supply place would offer more options versus the big-box chains, and you can often get delivery arrangements too, as it's not just 144 sq.ft. of bricks, but the sand for a base and gap fill too.
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Old 06-02-2010, 11:31 PM
 
Location: Sugar Grove, IL
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we had a small, crappy wooden deck. when we did a re-siding project, we pulled it off and went with a stamped concrete patio. we had it done is a slate pattern, with dark green and black highlights. we love it, however, it is not a do-it-yourself project. also, if you can give your patio something other than a typical square design, that will definitely add some interest. soften your angles! good luck with whatever option you choose.
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Old 06-03-2010, 02:12 PM
 
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well you all have kept me leaning towards the pavers. Do they make curved ones? I have a very skinny side yard that comes off of the future patio area, and the grass is not growing very well there, I wonder if it would be nice to make some sort of paverstone path thru the area so we have less grass to fight with there. It would go around to the back where the shed is, seems like it would be nice.
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Old 06-03-2010, 02:25 PM
 
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Concrete is what we use . You can decotate it too . We had ours decorated for walkway by contractors. So we will have to check into how they did it , but thats our plans for pond area . If we can't decorate ourselves we will still use concrete .
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Old 06-03-2010, 03:19 PM
 
Location: Central Fl
2,903 posts, read 11,145,367 times
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My personal favorite is stamped concrete. It is not a typical DIY project, although I have done it myself. Done right, it is awesome.

For DIY, pavers are your best bet. Do a good base and it should last nice for years. The newer prizmatic sand keeps the weeds at bay, and you can always spray the once a year ground-clear if you are worried.

Friends of mine actually sealed their pavers, (you do not need to), and like the look. Even ten years down the road, if they do look uneven, they could always be taken up and releveled. If done right, you should never need to.

As to curves, you do a soldier course, then cut the filler stones with a big wet saw.

A wood deck is a maintenance nightmare. I've built many, and they look great for a year......then go downhill. Vinyl is nice, but expensive.

Frank
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Old 06-04-2010, 02:13 PM
 
Location: Nesconset, NY
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In your area paver stones might be the easiest DIY project to build and maintain while looking "homey".

You may go for the tight paver configuration (which requires some practice unless you use fake, interlocking pavers) or you could use spacers to allow for soil/sand in between and let nature grow some grass between each paver. If pavers rise/fall because of settling they can be removed, leveled, and reinserted (unless you cement them in place....big mistake).

Correct me if I'm wrong but doesn't concrete tend to crack especially for a 12x12 area? With your temperature extremes don't most all concrete crack? Besides, it's a cold-looking commercial, bunker-like material and shouldn't be used for where "hominess" is a desired look.

A wood deck is a little more time consuming to build and maintain, requires concrete footings well below the frost line, and requires competent use of a level and power tools. Each year it should be waterproofed but that is easy to apply and doesn't cost much.

Personally, I'd do pavers because a deck requires a building permit (for us) and I like how grass between brick looks more "historical".
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Old 06-04-2010, 02:17 PM
 
Location: Nesconset, NY
2,202 posts, read 3,585,526 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by campmom123 View Post
well you all have kept me leaning towards the pavers. Do they make curved ones? I have a very skinny side yard that comes off of the future patio area, and the grass is not growing very well there, I wonder if it would be nice to make some sort of paverstone path thru the area so we have less grass to fight with there. It would go around to the back where the shed is, seems like it would be nice.
Depending on the type of paver you use, they do make curved ones but most styles require a wet-saw to cut "pie" shapes to make the curve.

[Edit: http://vastpavers.com/patterns/]
[Edit: copy/paste to use link]

Last edited by James1202; 06-04-2010 at 02:20 PM.. Reason: added DIY link
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