The value of paved driveways
Driveways are often overlooked, but can deliver significant value to the home. The renovation market is taking off with a surge of popularity. According to the 2017 Adbri Masonry Great Australian Backyard Survey, 63 per cent of Aussie homeowners are planning to either make backyard improvements or to undertake new projects in their outdoor space this year. This is a 41 per cent increase compared to last year.
One way to improve the appearance of your home before embarking on other projects is improving the driveway. The driveway is often the main entrance to the home and one of the first noticed features given it takes up a large portion of your front yard, the first thing most people will see and as first impressions count, the driveway can also add value to the home. Survey respondents voted the driveway third as the outdoor project that delivers the most value to the home. “The driveway has an incredibly large footprint at the front of your home so it is important to get it right in order to make a strong impression and add value to the home,” explains Jason Hodges, landscaping expert and Adbri Masonry brand ambassador.
Make a great first impression
You never get a second chance to make a good first impression. This rings especially true when it comes to your home, its saleability and appeal to potential buyers. “Homeowners should never underestimate the value in street appeal because buyers never do,” says Hodges. “When considering outdoor projects, a great place to start is the front yard. Minor improvements can make a massive difference to the way people view your place. In many homes, the dominant feature out the front is the driveway. It takes up a lot of surface area and serves an important function, but too often it’s overlooked. Driveways are also a great place to stand out from the crowd. Today, every second house looks the same, but yours doesn’t have to. With some creativity, you can leave the ‘Joneses’ in your rear view mirror by creating a paved driveway that uses colours, patterns and different paver sizes to build a stunning starting point for your home.”
Go green with permeable paving
Permeable pavements are the visible starting point to a simple, environmentally effective, water saving system beneath the surface. When a permeable pavement system is installed, the series of drainage holes in the pavement surface allow water to filtrate through the surface layers, minimising stormwater run off, downstream flooding and pollution problems, with the added benefit of reducing the need for costly underground retention systems. As driveways are traditionally, large impervious surfaces that water cannot penetrate, driveway oils and pollution tends to run directly from the driveway into stormwater. “Permeable paving is an essential choice if your driveway runs down to your house. In major downpours it allows the water to infiltrate through the pavement surface and be redistributed to the water table underground, versus the alternative which could see the water rushing down the slope of the driveway, filling the drain too quickly and flooding your garage, there’s also environmental advantages for other driveway projects” explains Hodges.
Expert Tip: Some councils will credit permeable pavements as a percentage of the soft landscape area on your parcel of land.
The great benefits of using pavers is the low maintenance involved as pavers expand and contract within the seasons and are less likely to crack like some other pavement types. Regular preventative maintenance includes sealing sweeping, paving gap sand filling, water blasting and general upkeep, which will help to extend the lifespan of your driveway. If your driveway does start to show some lineal cracking, you can easily repair it inexpensively by simply lifting and replacing the damaged pavers when laid on a flexible base.