Designing Spaces That Reflect You

What Is The Cheapest Material To Use For A Patio?

Your backyard isn’t complete without a patio. Think of it as a decked area for hosting guests or relaxing with your family. However, homeowners’ primary concern is the price of a patio. What is the cheapest material to use for a patio? This post reveals the least expensive material and shares valuable tips and tricks with you. Once you go through it, you will build a patio that suits your budget.

What is the cheapest material to use for a patio?

Creating an outdoor oasis doesn’t have to cost you much. Gravel, concrete, pavers, and bricks are the cheapest materials to build your patio. Even though these patio material options are affordable, they can look incredibly stylish. Each has pros and cons so you can choose according to your needs. 

Gravel patio

When you ask what is the cheapest material for a patio, the answer is gravel. Gravel consists of small stones in different sizes and colors and is quite affordable. Layering gravel in a designated area in your backyard creates a flat surface perfect for laying your furniture. 

Gravel is your best bet if you are looking for a DIY option to build a patio. You don’t need to hire special contractors, so you cut labor costs. All you need to do is create a border for your gravel and layer it. 

Gravel patio

Gravel can be positioned in any shape to flatter even the oddest layouts. With so many colors, you can find the right fit for your aesthetics. Some will love the crisp white gravel, while others prefer the earthy colors. Either way, be sure that your gravel patio fits your chosen style.

A gravel patio doesn’t require any special maintenance. You won’t use any hardener or sealant so the rocks will be loose. However, your patio might lose its shape as gravel will shift around. But this doesn’t have to deter you from having your budget-friendly patio. You can sweep the scattered rocks back into the designated area once a week. In addition, you might be required to remove the weeds to keep your gravel patio looking pristine. 

Gravel patio


Concrete is an excellent option if you want to build an affordable patio. Poured concrete can be easily shaped to fit your space. If you are cornered about durability, keep in mind that concrete is a good option. Nevertheless, keep in mind that it is prone to cracking, especially in cold climates. If moisture penetrates the concrete, it will freeze and expand.

You will need to replace the whole patio because it can’t be easily fixed. But you don’t have to give up concrete yet. You are advised to apply a special concrete sealant once every couple of years to prevent moisture and keep your concrete patio neat. 

What is the cheapest material to use for a patio

Concrete is a paste that is poured into a bordered area to harden. Whether a square or a round patio design, concrete provides endless options regarding style. That said, you can create any custom shape that suits your preference. 


If you think plain concrete might not fit your idea of creating a charming space, you better rethink. Consider stamped concrete a great way to add a personality to your outdoor space. This option includes pressing a stencil against fresh concrete to create intriguing shapes. The stencils come with unique textures to achieve the desired effect. With various patterns and shapes available, you can bring the desired vibe. 

Concrete pavers

What is the cheapest material to use for a patio that looks stylish? Concrete pavers are blocks made of concrete available in different shapes, colors, and sizes. They are arranged in various patterns for visual interest. 

What is the cheapest material to use for a patio

Since they are made of concrete, they will share some advantages with poured concrete. But there are still differences between these two patio options. Concrete pavers are individual blocks, and the space between them provides good drainage. Even if the blocks are damaged, you can easily remove the damaged ones and replace them. The concrete pavers can be easily moved to reshape or move your patio.


When we talk about what is the cheapest material to use for a patio, bricks might be the last on the list. However, many will choose them due to the rustic vibe. A brick patio is a classic that never fades, flattering many different styles. To save money, you can go for salvaged bricks which are way cheaper. They have a rustic look, which adds a natural look to your patio design.

What is the cheapest material to use for a patio

However, keep in mind that bricks can crack due to extreme temperatures. But this doesn’t have to scare you. Individual bricks can be easily changed with new ones. However, some don’t like the brick options since they can be uneven. Bricks and mortar won’t create a perfectly even surface, so your furniture might wobble. 

How much does it cost to build a patio?

You can expect to pay $6-20 on the cheaper end for building a patio. The total costs depend on the size, material, and complexity. 

A gravel patio costs $6-$10 per square foot, making it the cheapest option. Installing a gravel patio is easy, so that you can save on labor fees. 

Poured concrete costs $6-$13 per square foot. Concrete pavers cost $13–$20 per square foot. If you install them yourself, you cut down on labor costs. 

A brick patio costs you $14-$20 per square foot. If you wish to save money, you can go for reclaimed bricks. They have an uneven texture, which some love and others hate. While it looks rustic, the reclaimed brick can create a rough surface. 

How to choose the suitable material for your patio

Choosing a patio material can be challenging since there are many factors included. The material will have a significant impact on the look and style, as well as the price for this project. Ideally, the patio should perfectly blend in with the outdoor space. The style should also match the architectural design of the house. Many will go a step forward and make sure it is an extension of the indoor living space. 

Gravel is the perfect material for recreating the English home feel. It goes perfectly with Victorian and colonial homes, enhancing the curb appeal. However, it doesn’t have to mean this patio material can be used for modern styles. The versatility of gravel makes it ideal for contemporary gardens as well.

Concrete is a great option to ground the space, whether poured or stamped. It is perfect for contemporary and minimal traditional house styles. But you can also make it work for any other style with the prep implementation.

Pavers add visual interest with intriguing patterns. They are primarily applied to new traditional and contemporary homes. However, concrete pavers are also used in high-end homes, even though they are affordable.

Brick is another material we discussed as an answer to “What is the cheapest material to use for a patio.” It is one of the aesthetic choices to create rustic outdoor space for enjoyment. The rough look and earthy colors perfectly complement traditional house styles. We can envision a gorgeous colonial home with a red brick patio to add visual interest. Nevertheless, it is always recommended when you want to add a retro vibe to your outdoor space.

What to consider before building a patio

Before you build your patio, it would be best to determine the correct location. Think of a spot that would best fit your needs. If you plan to create an al fresco dining area, building your patio close to the kitchen sounds reasonable. The patio’s proximity to your indoor kitchen doesn’t matter if you have an outdoor kitchen. Another thing to consider when entertaining at home is the bathroom proximity for your guests. But if you plan to sunbathe and enjoy the sun, it would be best to determine at which spot the sun stays the longest. 

Another thing to consider is the space desiccated to a patio. The size of the space will determine the price of your patio. If you plan to host guests, then you need an ample area. A smaller patio would work fine if you plan to use it with your family. Ideally, the patio size should be enough to comfortably accommodate the furniture you plan to put in and provide traffic space. 

Final thoughts

Building a patio for enjoying the outdoors doesn’t have to be expensive. With various cheap materials available, the final choice depends on your needs and preferences. Gravel, concrete, pavers, and bricks are the commonly used material among savvy homeowners wishing to save money. 


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