Here we share our pavers vs flagstone guide including pros & cons, durability, cost and popular types for your backyard designs.
One of the most popular landscape materials for backyards and patios are pavers (manufactured concrete product) and flagstone (natural stone product).
However, questions there are many about which material is the best and most suitable for your home’s backyard. Below we will help you understand more about these two specific materials, their properties, costs, and types.
Pavers vs Flagstone Durability
Pavers for the back yard make up manufactured concrete that is available in a variety of random patterns, sets, sizes, and colors.
Since they are manufactured in the industries and factories, they are precisely pre-cut when delivered to the job site. Hence, cutting activities on the same work-site are minimized and they can be readily installed.
These pre-cut paver products are also designed to meet a standard size and are then transported to be placed on the driveways, patios, and walkways.
Since they can be customized into any form, you can expect some unique patterns and an ‘out of the box’ feel in the outdoors.
Whereas there is no doubt they offer utmost durability due to their production in the factory under certain specified environmental conditions. Pavers are also comparatively easier to maintain and have proved to withstand traffic far much better than flagstones.
On the other hand, flagstones are natural stones that may include slate, sandstone, limestone, bluestone, and travertine. They are quarried in different parts of the country and are available in various shades, textures, and colors.
Since they are naturally manufactured, they come in various uneven sizes that need to be either cut down into slabs or square and rectangular shapes or just simply ‘go with the flow’ character.
The craftsmen can very creatively play with these uneven shapes to create an organic, authentic and yet a creative backdrop.
However, they may require some maintenance over the period of years and can not be simply replaced as compared to the concrete pavers.
Flagstone is a sedimentary rock and can be majorly affected by sun exposure, moisture, and traffic, thus, creating cracks and chips. So, if there is a need to replace a particular damaged piece, it may get difficult to find the exact alternative for replacement.
Best Flagstone for Patio
From a wide array of varieties, here are some of the common aesthetically appealing flagstone options that you could use for your patios, driveways, and walkways.
This sedimentary rock is available in shades of beige, yellow, brown, grey, and black. It is quite a durable product and can be easily used in the extreme humid climates since it has great insulation properties and doesn’t get too hot or cold.
This sedimentary rock is constituted of sand and quartz to perfectly amalgamate and offer utmost durability and weather resistance. They are available in earthy tones such as deep red, golden yellow, and browns. However, in some extreme climate cases, they require sealing to avoid unnecessary stains.
Travertine is available in shades of blue, tan, and brown with utmost focus on creating a luxurious backdrop. This stone can be used in any climate as far as it is not prone to acid attacks since that may cause the stone to break down. But the major advantage is that you could use it in both extreme hot and cold climates.
Best Paver for Patio
From a wide array of varieties, here are some of the common paver options that you could use for your patios, driveways, and walkways.
Molded clay when baked in a kiln produces brick pavers that are quite abundant in textures, colors, and patterns. They are easy to maintain as they can be easily brushed off and cleaned while providing the utmost aesthetically appealing qualities.
However, they may chip or crack in some cases – but therefore, can also be easily replaced with a new brick product. See brick patio designs here.
One of the most common options, the concrete pavers is highly used in walkways as well as driveways. They come in a variety of sizes, thicknesses, and textures and can also be customized as per the needs.
Concrete is quite a durable material and you can easily install these pavers. In the long run, concrete pavers provide the most important advantage of requiring the least maintenance.
For more designs see our article on the different types of patios.
Pavers vs Flagstone Cost
Depending on the location, local availability, sizes, thickness, and the amount of customization – the prices of flagstone and paver may vary. Let’s break down the values and discuss the overall incurred costs.
Average Flagstone Cost
A flagstone may cost somewhere between $15 to $22 per square feet including both the materials and the installation. In particular, a flagstone will cost around $2 to $6 per square foot up to the purchase and later this price is subjected to rise when adding mortar, labor, and the preparation of the site.
A small flagstone patio of 300 feet may cost from $4500 to $6600 depending on the area you live and local labor costs.
Average Paver Cost
On the other hand, a paver may cost around $10 to $25 per square foot. However, heavy traffic areas and high-end uses may cost around $50 per square foot.
A small paver patio of 300 square feet may cost from $3000 to $7500 depending on your area and the current cost of building materials and labor.
For very large complexes and multi-functional areas, you should expect to pay more than $10,000 including prep works and design patterns.
Which is Better Flagstone or Pavers?
Although both the materials offer their own pros and cons, it is crucial to identify the necessities based on the budget, aesthetics, local availability, and overall requirements.
For a large project, it is beneficial to choose pavers as they can be easily customized in the factory while providing longevity and easy maintenance.
Whereas for a small residential project, if your exterior design theme allows, you can choose flagstones that provide an authentic and organic feel to your backyard design.
Since pavers are easily available and can be replaced and customized, it makes a better option to be used in a building of any scale. On the other hand, if you are looking to have a customized pattern or design on the patios and walkways – choosing a paver is a better option than flagstone.
Visit our gallery of stone patio ideas to see more designs.