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Is Decking Cheaper Than Paving

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  • 15-05-2022
Is Decking Cheaper Than Paving

When you begin to consider your garden re-design, you want to think about your options. One consideration is cost. We ask: is decking cheaper than paving for your garden? And which material offers better value?

Should I Choose Decking or Paving?

It can be challenging to decipher which material or style would look best and suit your budget nicely for your property or household. Ultimately you have to assess many factors, such as the quality, durability, how much maintenance they require, costs, materials you desire and the value.

Paving and decking give you, your family and your guests the option to sit outside in the summer and relax; they're both excellent household features and add tremendous value to your home.

You can add various exciting features to your decking and paving to spruce up the appeal, such as hot tubs, deck chairs and tables, firepits, etc.

Whilst there is a wide range of aspects to explore, the primary points to observe when deciding between these two great applications are:


Decking is a far more affordable material; it doesn't have longevity and requires more maintenance costs; however, it is quicker to install or install DIY.


Paving stones or slabs are much pricier options; they take much more time to install; however, they last for a long time and require almost no maintenance throughout the years. 

Is Decking Cheaper Than Paving?

The Costs Of Decking vs Paving

Initially, you want to ask yourself how much money you may have to spend on your outdoor project. You'll often find yourself to be happier with the final result if you discuss and agree on a budget cost before your project construction begins.

Aim to settle on an honest budget; that way, you can make peace with the foundations and materials you can afford and prevent yourself from overspending or being too critical of your over project. 

You'll want to ensure that your entire space is thoroughly measured during this time, whether backyard, front or back garden or space outdoors; doing so will be handy. Knowing the precise sizes of your area will enable you to immediately see the area you wish to cover with paving or decking.

It helps you get to grips with an estimated budget price, and you can start figuring out your material options and details that suit your property or household.

The general costs of your decking or paving are:

DIY costs per m2 for installing standard limestone or sandstone patios:

DIY costs per m2 for installing decking


£15 - £25

Professionally installed decking per m2 costs:

Professionally installed paving per m2 costs


£100 - £125

The prices above are a rough guide; however, there are numerous combinations of quality and materials, so it's best to ask reliable, professional tradespeople or contractors for a more accurate estimate and advice.

You must be aware that benefits, rates and services will drastically differ for different companies and regions across the UK. 

You may also utilise this formula to help decipher whereabouts you should place your Budget:

Total Budget ÷ Area = Square Meter Budget

An example of this sum or formula may be:

Suppose your budget is set at £1,500 and you wish to cover an area of approximately 32 square meters; you would work out the costs by doing:

£1500 ÷ 32 = £46.88 per m2


If this is the case, you may feel more inclined to commit to performing a DIY job if you have the skills and experience to create clean lines. Unless you increase your budget, you may struggle to hire a tradesperson to install any paving or decking for these prices.

However, in your DIY venture, this budget would grant you the flexibility to utilise higher quality materials. Ensure you're honest about your budget; once your mind fully understands what your budget can achieve, you'll appreciate it more when it's finished. 

Maintenance of Decking vs Paving

Low Maintenance

Paving is arguably the best option for any outdoor living space; it tends to last a long time, and whilst the slabs age, they typically give your property more character.

Paving comes with an added expense that means you won't have to spend too much money or time maintaining it throughout the years.

The slabs tend not to have a natural lifespan; they can survive through virtually any environment or climate. 

High Maintenance

Decking, however, needs a tad more maintenance and regular upkeep, and this is because it is far more susceptible to weathering.

Every year you must strive to treat your timber decking with regular oiling, ensuring the local weather hasn't affected your material too much and that no visual damage is done.

On the other hand, it has a relatively limited lifespan, so if you wish to choose decking for your household or property, you might want to consider paving instead. 

Property Value of Decking vs Paving

For any significant home improvements or property projects, most people tend to consider the added value it will bring to their build or household, especially those homeowners in particular that are looking to sell the home in the near future.

It's incredibly wise to consider the overall value costs when you decide to add decking or pavers, whether you wish to sell your home or not.

Both decking and pavers help increase the value of your home by adding kerb appeal. The more appealing your home is to potential buyers, the more they will feel inclined to purchase it.

However, when it comes to ROI (Return On Investment), numerous buyers agree that the better choice of the two is decking, especially for those wishing to sell their home quickly or in the next few years. A deck adds approximately 70% ROI to a household or property, if not more; however, patio pavements offer at least 50-60% of ROI.

Generally, the value cost that you add to your house or property through adding patio pavements, driveways, pergolas or decks will also depend on a wide range of aspects and factors, including garden design, material and the level of kerb appeal that it adds. 

Ease of Installation of Decking vs Paving

Typically, a large portion of outdoor patio and pathways expenses is put towards the overall costs of the high standard installation service.

Due to this factor, multiple homeowners have begun building their pavers and decks on their properties. While this is a great way to save money, you'll probably not mind spending that installation service cost if you don't have the skills to complete a more intensive construction job.

You may be wondering, which is easiest to build yourself, decks or pavers? Often, you'll require plenty of elbow grease to complete paver installations; they tend to take a longer duration.

When it comes to decking, you must prepare much more as you need many more suitable tools to complete the job; however, the process is straightforward for those with a little more experience in construction. DIY is a highly recommended option if you desire decking in your garden, backyard or outdoor space. 

Pavers and decks have multiple pros and cons that you may assess.

pavement - The Lifespan of Decking vs Paving

Either can be cheaper than the other; it mostly depends on the material and colours you opt for. It's best to select high-quality materials for paving, as these will allow you to gain as much value as possible out of your build.

However, many prefer composite decking as it is superior in numerous ways, primarily for its high return value and low maintenance requirements. 

The Lifespan of Decking vs Paving

The short answer is it's incredibly close; however, an overall new patio can often last many homeowners many years more than standard decking.

The lifespan can widely vary depending on the types of patio and decking materials you choose, alongside the installation method and usage.

Traditional wooden decking tends to have a life that spans 5-15 years if treated well. Various wooden decking materials of much higher quality care have more longevity; however, many of these materials are known as pressured wood materials that are highly susceptible to moisture retention.

They stay damp for a prolonged time and can rot away, which is why most highly recommend you use an oil-based stain when providing efficient maintenance. 

Composite decking is an interesting mixture of recycled plastic and wood; it is a decking form with a much longer lifespan than others. Most companies that manufacture composite decking offer their happy customers a 25-year guarantee that they may utilise against any discolouration that will allow their product to last many years longer than expected.

It's almost wholly age proof thanks to its plastic lumber base. 

For those that desire cheaper paving that lies on a sand base, the life expectancy of this foundation may be around five years; at that point, it will require ground levelling.

However, you can opt for a stunning stone patio with a more sturdy foundation, like a concrete base that will not need levelling in a few years. Stone patios often provide a long lifespan, much like composite decking. 

 decking or composite decking

Are you looking for garden decking or composite decking near you? If you require garden decking in Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire contact us today. 

Our garden design experts can supply and install beautiful garden decking for you and your family to enjoy for years to come.