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Tips For Installing A Driveway At Home

large home with driveway and grass outside

I’ve written a fair bit about our home renovation now, but very little about the garden. There’s several reasons for this. Firstly, the back garden is an actual jungle. (Okay, maybe not. But it’s almost a forest, it’s so overgrown). Secondly, the front garden is basically a path, wooden fence and grass. There’s absolutely no charm or character to it. So when I sat down to plan the driveway I’m hoping to get, I knew simple tar – Mac wouldn’t cut it. Read on to find out my plans for installing a driveway at home. I’ll share things I’ve considered and different surface options.

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Installing A Driveway At Home

My home is a 1950’s semi – detached house. It is surrounded by hundreds of almost identical homes on a former council estate. (Although most of the homes have now been purchased). My street is pretty narrow, so cars can only park up one side. This is fine while nobody can visit, but it’s an issue if everyone’s home and people get visitors. My current path is concrete and has 4 steps up to my front door. I want to turn 2/3 of my front garden into a driveway, and keep the remaining 1/3 for plants.

Driveway Surfaces

Almost every house nearby which has a driveway has a tarmac one. While this is the most cost effective option, it’s definitely not the most pleasing to the eye. I’m a huge fan of limestone, and have been seriously considering limestone paving for my driveway surface and paths. I’m not convinced it’s the best option for a sloped driveway though, so cobbles are my plan B. My part of the world gets pretty bad snow and ice in the winter, so the extra grip from cobbles would be a welcome addition.

cobbled driveway in front of a modern home. Research for installing a driveway at home

If you’re on a tight budget, you can always opt for gravel as a more affordable option. You may end up paying for more punctures with gravel though.

Driveway Styles

The pavement is around 1.5m lower than my front door step, so I can either have a sloped driveway leading up to my front door level, or have a car port dug out, and keep the steps up to the house.

I’ve decided to have the driveway slope up to door level and get rid of the steps. This means I’ll be able to get 2 cars on the driveway, and it’ll be easier to get shopping into the house too.

Gates On The Driveway?

Being able to reverse my car onto the driveway outside my home is something I’ve spent years dreaming of. I have to be honest though – there was never a gate on the driveway in any of those fantasies. Somehow, having to get out of the car to open the gates before reversing on, spoils the illusion a fair bit. I don’t live in the best neighbourhood though, so gates would definitely be an added deterrent for any would be thieves.

One thing you also need to check is whether you need permission from your local council to get your kerb dropped to allow access to your driveway. There’s a handy government search system here which will find your local council’s policy for you.

Finally, if you have any other tips for installing a driveway at home, I’d love to hear them. So feel free to leave them in the comments below.





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