Designing a Walkway for your Home? Three Considerations

The front yard of your home greets guests as they arrive, and your back yard is a sanctuary throughout the year (except maybe in the middle of a cold winter). A walkway leading up to your front door (or one that meanders around the back yard) adds a feeling of completeness and beauty to the place that you call home.

If you’re considering a walkway for your home, here are three ways to get the most out of this functional and aesthetic feature.

1. What type of pavement fits the style of your home?

When you look at the different materials available for walkways, it’s important to ask what will be the best complement to the front of your home. For example: If your home is brick, clay pavers or concrete with a brick border will provide a nice accent. Additionally, earth tones or stone would look good with vinyl siding.

Another important aspect to consider is function, which includes the width you want your walkway to be. Although 4 feet wide is standard, you may desire more width if your home is large or if you will be getting lots of foot traffic. Also, a straight path to the front of the house is ideal for guests — but you may want the pathway in the backyard to be curved to provide a more relaxed atmosphere.

2. How important is durability?

The four most common materials for walkways are:

  • Brick
  • Concrete
  • Natural stone
  • Rock

Each of these materials is very durable, but they each boast specific and unique qualities. While concrete is the most affordable out of these materials, it is also easy to maintain and smooth for foot traffic and rolling garbage cans over it. Natural stone is the most expensive out of the three options, but it is also the most common because of its beauty. Natural stone requires maintenance and sealing on a regular basis. Rocks, however, do not require sealing — but they do tend to get knocked loose easily. Bricks, which create a quaint and classy look, are very durable, although they may need to be replaced from time to time.

Gravel walkways may be the least durable, so you may not want to use this material for high traffic areas. Brick, concrete, stone and rock are all durable materials ideal for using in walkways.

3. Which specialist will you hire?

When you’re looking for someone to lay your new walkway, one of the most important things to ask prospective contractors is their experience. It’s also a good idea to ask them for a list of recommendations from people in your area. A poor foundation laid by an inexperienced pavement specialist may result in loose materials, flooding and swift disrepair. A level walkway will give you and your guests safety as they travel in and out of your home.

A reputable and experienced specialist

Walkways should be functional and aesthetically pleasing. Making sure you hire a reputable and experienced pavement specialist to guarantee that the walkway you choose for your home is exactly the design you want — and will last for years to come.