July 25, 2024

Journal Fact

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Top Considerations for Planning a Driveway

3 min read
driveway layout ideas

Last Updated on June 16, 2022 by Journal Fact

When it comes to planning your driveway, you may catch yourself thinking about it as entirely separate to your home. What many fail to realise until it’s ‘set in stone,’ though, is that it should actually be treated as a way to add to the design and layout of your home. Creating a driveway that compliments your home can increase not only your home’s house value, but also leave a lasting impression on your guests – it’s the first and last thing they will see, after all. 

Ensure you have the space and that you meet the maintenance requirements 

Before you even begin to decide on what your new driveway will look like, you need to consider whether or not you have enough space to build one in the first place. Make sure you have a space that’s at least 3m wide – big enough to fit an average-sized car. You’ll also want to check in with your area’s maintenance laws, just to make sure you’re adhering to the requirements.

Make sure your driveway matches the look of your home

This is the fun part – coming up with driveway layout ideas! Once you’ve got the practical side of planning your driveway down, you can begin to plan the design and layout of it. First, take a look at the exteriors of your home. Take note of its design and layout features, as they can greatly influence your options going forward.

For example, check where the front door is located, what colour the walls are, whether the house’s design looks plain or busy. A busy house may look better with more of a plain driveway, and vice versa. Lighter walls could match better with a lighter driveway, or a mixture of light and dark tones. 

Some spaces might allow for curved or long driveways and others may have to be kept short. To create more interest, you can also mix and match certain materials. You might even want to add plants to the sides of your driveway to soften its appearance. 

Remember that good drainage is key

Drainage may be the single most important consideration to be aware of as you continue with your planning. The last thing you want is for your driveway area to be sure from danger, flood and water to run into public drains or property. You should always do your best to set up the drainage in a way which drains back into your own drains or garden. 

An easy way to do this is by keeping space on both sides of your driveway, for two 20cm strips. Fill the strips with decorative stones to create a natural drainage system that leads away from public areas. 

Another way to do this is by ensuring the material you use is permeable. Permeable products and materials are great for drainage, because they allow the water to drain into a sub-base where it is stored and later channelled and released. 

Choose the right materials based on your budget, property needs, space and design 

Most driveways are created using either loose materials, block paving, concrete, asphalt, resin-bound gravel, self-binding gravel or grass. Be sure to do research on what’s best for your home. Certain materials cannot be used on slopes, for example. Other materials may require more maintenance, or cost more to fix or replace. 

When it comes to the cost of planning your driveway, you need to factor in the cost of labour as well as the material costs. Certain landscapes require more work than others, which will naturally be more expensive. Fortunately, there are some great options when it comes to choosing your materials – many of which are durable, practical, great to look at and affordable.  

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