June 16, 2024

What Is the Least Expensive Way to Build a Patio?

There is no need for me to convince you of the value in having a patio. Only a well-built patio can enhance an outdoor area to the same extent. Fortunately, there are a plethora of methods for creating them.

What better way to express yourself and customize your outdoor space than to start from scratch and build a patio from the ground up? For those of us on a tight budget, the question is: how can we accomplish this without going bankrupt?

So, What’s the Most Cost-Effective Way to Build a Patio?

Filling in the space with decomposed granite or gravel and adding a few pavers or interlocking tiles to the base of your patio furniture is the most cost-effective way to build a patio. The cost per square foot can be as low as $1 if you do it yourself. It’s possible that hiring someone to do it for you will cost twice as much.

When it comes to deciding how to construct your patio, there are more factors to take into account than just the price. Let’s get down to the nitty-gritty of it all.

DIY vs Hiring a Professional

If you’re looking to save money, you can always build your own patio. The value of your time, tools, expertise, and lack of a warranty should all be taken into account when deciding whether to hire a professional or do it yourself.

In general, professional solutions are more well-rounded, and as a result, customers should have high expectations for their experiences. A lot of reputable contractors are covered by insurance, and they’ll either reimburse you or fix any shoddy work.

This isn’t a ploy to convince you not to do it on your own! If you’re interested in making a DIY patio, there are a number of simple ways to get started.

That being said, the cost may rise above your comfort level after you buy the tools, put in the time, and make a few mistakes!

Sizing Your Project

Obviously, the more space you need, the more money you’ll have to spend on your patio. 

When it comes to growth, it isn’t always a straight line increase. Increasing the size of a paver patio by two times is going to be more expensive than expanding a poured concrete patio by two times.

What is the reason for this? The transportation, mixing, and pouring of the necessary concrete accounts for a large portion of the labor costs in the latter.

On the other hand, installing a paver patio requires a lot of time and effort because each paver must be installed individually.

You should think about how much space you need and what you can live without before making a purchase. Consider cutting the patio in half and putting lava rocks around the perimeter as an idea.

When it comes to slashing costs, it’s all about finding small improvements and imagining new ways to do things.

Different Material Costs

Simply stated, the cost of different materials will vary. Let’s take a closer look at each material to see how it affects the cost of a patio build. Increasing your budget may be necessary.


When it comes to the cost of concrete, it ranges from $4.25 to $6.25 for each square foot that is poured. There are several steps to installing a concrete patio, including grading, subsoiling, and reinforcing. The price per square foot rises from $5 to $15 as a result of these additional factors.

Poured concrete patios cost $2,937 on average.

Concrete patios have been around for a long time and are the most popular choice. Some people prefer a more simple look, but they’re still pricey. Fortunately, you can always stain the concrete a different color if that’s what you’d prefer.

Some people, however, prefer a more elaborate patio arrangement. Let’s take a look at some other possibilities.

Stamped Concrete

All of the components of a simple poured concrete patio are present in a stamped concrete patio, but the coloring and stamping process adds an additional level of complexity and expense.

In terms of price per square foot, this stamping procedure can add anywhere from $8 to $20. As a result, the price per square foot for stamped concrete patios can range from $13 to $35.

An inexpensive alternative to tile, stamped concrete patios can look just as regal as their tiled counterparts, as the image above shows. Many stamped concrete patios look better than their tiled counterparts after sealing and staining.

It’s possible to find middle ground between these two extremes.


In many cases, the materials for a paver patio are less expensive than $2.40 per square foot (source). The pavers, on the other hand, can be as cheap or as expensive as you like, and their size may necessitate additional labor costs. As a result, the price of installing a paver patio ranges from $10 to $17 per square foot (source).

There are many advantages to paver patios over stamped concrete or tile, including lower costs and better looks. In addition, paver patios are long-lasting and require little upkeep. If you’re curious about the differences between stamped concrete and paver patios, you can check out patio paver supplier websites such as Midland Stone.


Gravel and decomposed granite are the most cost-effective building materials for your patio, as I mentioned at the outset of this article. It would cost less than $0.50 per square foot if you built the patio yourself and didn’t use pavers to decorate it.

There are some limitations to this, however. Even though we’ve shown it’s possible, placing outdoor furniture on gravel is a bad idea. Pavers and gravel are an unavoidable requirement if you plan to have patio furniture in your outdoor living area. Costs will go up as a result of this, of course.

On the other hand, pea gravel can be kicked and dug into. You’re going to have a mess on your hands if you have children or pets.