This article contains affiliate links
Porcelain paving has become one of our most favourite patio, paving, choices. With modern garden design in vouge many wish for paving with a contemporary feel.
One of the main candidates to fulfil this desire is Porcelain. Porcelain paving is more similar to a tile than conventional paving making it weather proof and hard wearing.
Being manufactured from natural materials and fired at high temperatures means there are many products to choose from.
If you see a contemporary, light coloured paving in a magazine there is a high chance it is porcelain! However, the important question is how much does porcelain patio cost?
In this article our case study found that:
The average cost of Porcelain paving installation in the UK is £142.74 per m2
The average cost of Porcelain paving installation in the UK 'labour only' is £65.00 per m2
The average cost of Porcelain paving in the UK 'materials only' including waste is £77.74 per m2
Here I will discuss the variables to find out how much porcelain patios cost per square metre. I will provide a case study breaking down all costs and quantities of a porcelain patios construction.
Are porcelain patios expensive?
There are varying factors which will dictate the cost of a porcelain patio. These include; access, labour, base materials and the paving itself.
Porcelain paving is on average 25% higher in cost than average natural stone paving. However, due to Porcelain being so popular, there are now plenty of highly priced, premium products on the market.
To buy porcelain paving there is normally a range of products varying from £30 - £120 per square metre. I find the most typical amount paid to buy porcelain paving is around £50 per square metre.
Consequently, I will use this amount to price up our porcelain paving, price, case study.
One of our porcelain paving projects in Aylesbury
Therefore, it is advised to specify which porcelain you want before instructing contractors for quotations. This prevents paving companies allowing large sums for ambiguous paving expectations.
Porcelain is extremely durable and weather resistant, Its colours do not fade over time meaning as long as it is laid well will last many decades. This actually makes porcelain paving rather good value for money.
Why do porcelain patio quotations vary so much?
As hinted above there are so many variables which go into paving quotations. Some paving contractors prefer to lay a level concrete base underneath porcelain paving.
This is because porcelain is more like a tile than a conventional paving materials. The impervious nature of porcelain can make it much more challenging to lay.
One of our porcelain projects in Harrow
Such base preparation can be much more labour intensive and expensive than conventional bases.
There is also an extremely wide spectrum of porcelain products on the market today. Some of these are remarkably variable in their price per square metre. Consequently you may wish to be very specific with the porcelain, paving, product you specify.
Bear in mind there is always a difference in what paving companies charge. One man bands will generally charge less and larger companies.
One of our porcelain paving projects with other garden landscaping in Hyde Heath
However recognise that all contractors are subject to the same fundamental laws of economics.
Supply and demand means that bad tradesmen will always be in less demand than good tradesmen. Do not be surprised to wait for builders with a good reputation and pay a little more.
However to avoid disappointment and a whole lot of grief stay away from very cheap quotations.
Materials will make up a large proportion of the cost of a porcelain patio. Materials not only just include the paving itself but the base materials also.
It can be surprising just how many loose aggregates and materials can cost. Bear in mind that a cheap price normally translates into less base-work.
Less base-work means a cracked patio with loose paving within a few years. Consequently, it is always a good idea to ask for a detailed works description with the quotation.
If you commission a competent paving contractor they will make sure your patio is excavated correctly. A new patio should be excavated to a minimum depth of 150mm.
There should be no loose soil or material left within the excavation. This will ensure no movement or settlement in the future.
It is remarkable just how much spoil and waste can come out of such an excavation. Not only are skips and grabs expensive but the labour it takes to shift such loads.
There is no denying that finding skilled labour today is both challenging and expensive.
However there is much more to laying paving correctly than many people expect. Unfortunately some assume that landscaping should be a cheap service.
The problem with that assumption is it has created a whole market of undesirables. Don’t be surprised if you’re ‘too good to be true price’ turns out to be a complete nightmare! It’s amazing how many clients have learn the hard way.
If you want to know how to choose a competent patio builder visit our guide here. The reality is, outdoor construction requires robust materials and physically strong labour and skilled craftsmanship.
That’s before discussing the variables of bad weather and even considering profit and risk. If you want quality paving which reaches your expectations do not expect the labour to be cheap.
A price case study for a 50 square metre Porcelain Patio
The case study below will price up a 50 square meter porcelain patio to the correct specification.
A data table will be used so all quantities, costs and calculations can be transparent. This case study will aim to find out the average price per square metre of porcelain paving installation.
The works specification
In order to quantify the cost of a porcelain patio you must price to the correct specification. Here I will include a paving project specification which dictates the quantities for the table below:
Table costs based upon a 50 square metre porcelain patio
Extra costs for porcelain patios
Porcelain paving projects do not just involve the physical laying of the paving. Very often, there are other projects, clearance costs, levelling, drainage, steps and retaining structures to also be installed. These costs have to be added to the standard cost of simply laying the patio itself. Such typical costs are listed and summarised below
It is very common for a new patio to fall upon an existing manhole or inspection chamber. In such a scenario it is likely this will need to be re-set or replaced.
The cost of this will depend upon a few, varying factors. Sometimes a new patio will require existing inspection chambers to be adjusted in height.
Furthermore, old chambers may be cracked and degraded which will require repair.
One of our neatly cut porcelain paving recess manhole covers
Recess manhole covers look fantastic if set and cut in well. However, these will also add some extra cost to your porcelain paving.
The average manhole cover installed to a new patio can cost between £150-£300 including materials and labour. If you wish to install a recess manhole yourself why not read our step by step guide.
Patio drainage is a subject within it-self and can add extra cost to a patio project. Such installations can include drainage gulley's and soak-away installation.
New patios are not allowed to direct runoff into existing drainage networks. Consequently, patio drainage systems, soakaways and water storage tanks should be installed.
There are too many variable patio drainage scenarios to guess a rough price. However a 50 square meter patio with drainage gulley’s plumbed into a soak-away would cost around £2,000.00
One of our porcelain paving patios in Harrow, Greater London
Installing patio steps is very typical where the home is at a higher level than the paving. The size of the steps will always depend on this height and the client’s preference.
However, a single step up is typically the most likely scenario. Such as step the area of a large slab would normally cost around £250 to install.
When installing any new patio there will very often be level changes. When patios become raised up than the surrounding ground retaining features will be required.
Retaining walls and features can be very costly, patio installations. Retaining walls need to be robust enough to retain heavy patio construction.
Such installations typically require skilled labour and expensive materials. If you’re new paving has many retaining features and level changes expect some extra cost.
There are too many variable factors to calculate an average figure here. However we have some written some other articles which may help below.
How much does a garden retaining wall cost?
How much does it cost to level a garden?
At the end of every paving project there will always be some making good projects to undertake.
For example, needing to marry in levels around your new porcelain or repair turf. Sometimes returning the site to a good standard is a project within itself!
Thank you for reading our article on how much does a porcelain patio costs. If require patio or paving services please do not hesitate to contact us. Below I will link to some other relevant articles you may find informative.
'As an Amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases'
Serving the landscapes of Buckinghamshire, Amersham, Aylesbury & High Wycombe
Hyde Heath, Amersham, Buckinghamshire