Stamped Concrete vs. Pavers Cost Guide {Driveway + Patio}

Stamped Concrete vs. Pavers

Researching and planning an improvement to your home can add a lot of unwanted stress and anxiety on top of whatever you already have going on in your busy life. Homeowners often wrestle with the same common thoughts.

  • Am I doing the right thing?
  • Did I consider all my options?
  • How is it going to look?
  • Did I pick the right contractor?
  • Did I select the right product for my house?

And on and on….

If you’re in the planning stages of a new back patio, driveway or pool deck, you’re likely considering hardscape options. The most commonly compared hardscapes are stamped concrete and pavers. When comparing stamped concrete vs. pavers, the main areas of concern are:

  • The Look
  • The Price
  • The Longevity

pavers vs stamped concrete

The Look

The LookStamped ConcretePavers
StyleMade to imitate the look of paversAuthentic paver design
Design OptionsLimited based on contractor’s capabilityHundreds of colors, styles and patterns combinations

One of the main reasons homeowners research these types of home improvement projects is that they are unhappy with the way their home’s driveway, patio, entryway or pool deck looks right now. They want to install something that they can be proud of and enjoy with friends and family. That brings us to comparing the overall appearance of stamped concrete vs. pavers.

Stamped concrete is made to look like pavers. Basically, you can think of stamping as imitation pavers.

Pavers come in hundreds of colors, styles and pattern combinations, whereas stamped concrete can be limited by the contractor’s capability.

Pavers definitely win the first round of the battle due to overall appearance and sheer number of design options.

Now, on to comparing the price of the two options.

cost for stamped concrete and pavers

The Price

The PriceStamped ConcretePavers
Cost Per Square Foot$8-$18 depending on complexity$15-$21 depending on material
Visually Similar Project Cost (1,000 Square Feet)~$16,000~$16,000

Pavers and stamped concrete are generally very close in price. There are many different styles of pavers which do vary in price, as well as many different installation methods of stamped concrete which will also increase or decrease the price. When looking at standard installations without all the bells and whistles, pavers and stamped concrete are about dead even.

This round is a tie.

Now to the third area of concern – the lifespan of each hardscape option.

pavers or stamped patio cost

The Longevity

The LongevityStamped ConcretePavers
Lifetime Guarantee?NoYes
Easily Replaced/Repaired?NoYes

Questions you might be asking yourself:

  • How long will this last?
  • What are the guarantees? 
  • Will it add any value to my home?
  • Can I recoup any of the costs upon resale?

Stamped Concrete Longevity and Guarantees

Depending on the contractor, most contractors will not guarantee the installation at all. The reason is that concrete is cured with the natural elements of the environment and there are too many unknown variables which are out of the contractor’s hands. It is a proven fact that concrete and stamped concrete will eventually crack, stain, and fade over the years. Depending on the thickness of the concrete, the amount of rebar, and the quality of the crew installing the project, this can happen sooner than later.

Pavers Longevity and Guarantees

Unlike stamped concrete, pavers are backed with a Lifetime Guarantee against breaking and cracking. This should immediately provide you as a homeowner with the peace of mind when comparing the longevity of the 2 products.

When considering adding value to your home, pavers without a doubt instantly add value to your home. The fact that they look gorgeous, and that they never have to be replaced will give you bonus points when your house in being appraised.

So Are Pavers or Stamped Concrete Better?

Going to the scorecards, with 2 rounds going to pavers,  1 round a draw, the winner is pavers. As a company that used to install both pavers and stamped concrete (now we only install pavers), when all the facts are laid on the table for the homeowner, it is a no-brainer as to which option they choose every time.

1. The Look: Pavers are going to look better than stamped concrete in the short term and most importantly in the long term.

2.The Price: Visually similar designs will cost you roughly the same.

3.The Longevity: Pavers last longer than stamped concrete.

So what are the next steps?

The next steps for you are to figure out which contractor you are going to work with. This is another arena where you are going to want to do your research. A great option is to get a referral from someone you know who has had their driveway, patio or pool deck done. Ask them how their experience was and if they would recommend the company.

Be sure to check out this article for a step by step guide on how to choose your paver contractor.

Lear more with:Pavers 101: The Ultimate Paver Resource Guide Click Here to Continue Learning