Why Your Driveways Are More Important Than You Think

Selling your home can be exhausting, time consuming and stressful. Yet somehow, all this worry and stress seems to disappear the moment you get an offer for your home and the sale is finalised. So, how can you reduce the time of stress and speed up the process to that happy moment, while getting the price you want for your house? By not neglecting your driveway.

In this blog post we explain how the design of your driveway can help you sell your home quicker and for the best price. We will share tips of how you can boost the visual appeal of your home from arrival. You may need planning permission for your driveway, and we touch on this too. We will share advice and guidance about drainage for your driveway and finally, we share some ideas for your driveway design.

If you have been neglecting your driveway or you’re keen to create a great driveway that really boost your kerb appeal and increases the value of your home, then this is a must-read blog post for you.

Yellow Limestone Paved DrivewayA block paved driveway with a yellow limestone patio on either side

Increase The Value Of Your Home with a Landscaped Driveway

The most understandable way to add value to your home is with an extension. After all, an extension to the existing property means more rooms or more space. However, not everyone has the space or planning permission to increase the value of their home with an extension. Plus, this can take away outdoor space that could be what really sells the home.

Then there are the rooms to consider. Research shows that the two most important rooms for home buyers are the kitchen and the bathroom. These are the rooms that can make or break the sale of your home. Home buyers want clean, spacious and modern looking kitchens and bathroom son their future homes.

That said, if the buyer pulls up to the house and it’s a mess form the outside, this could be enough to put them off. It’s essential that the outside of your home isn’t neglected because this where first impressions are made. A beautiful driveway and well-kept garden can really sell your home for you and show off incredible kerb appeal. However, a worn, stained, broken or tired-looking driveway could be just the thing to send the buyers running the other way.

Your driveway is the first thing that a potential buyer will see when they view your home. We all know how much first impressions count so make sure you are making the best possible first impression with your driveway. If your driveway gives the buyer a shabby impression of your home, this impression will stay with them as they view the rest of your home. Remember – it’s not only the first thing they see, but the last thing they see too.

No matter how amazing the rest of your home may look, that poorly cared for or outdated driveway could be enough to leave them looking elsewhere.

Yellow Limestone Cobbles - PrimethorpeYellow Limestone cobbled front path with artificial grass.

Boost The Visual Appeal Of Your Home

When it comes to your home, make a good impression is essential! Whether you’re selling you home, welcoming guests or just getting home each night after a long day at work. A visually appealing home is just what you need.

If you would like to boost your kerb appeal and the visual appearance of your home, then consider a new driveway. This is where you can set the scene for the style of your home. You could opt for a driveway that matches the brickwork colour of your home. Alternatively, you could go for something that is the exact opposite. This will help create a modern feel to your home. White and black driveways look minimalistic and unique. A driveway like this will really help your home stand out from your neighbours.

There are so many different driveway materials and options out there. Think about your home, your personality and your style to create the perfect driveway to boost the visual appeal of your home.

Will I Need Driveway Planning Permission?

While you don’t always need planning permission for a new driveway, there are circumstances where you do. We have listed some of the more common circumstances where you will need planning permission for your new driveway below. If you do need planning permission, you will need to submit an application to the local authorities. Work cannot start on your driveway until the permission has been granted.

  • If you are paving more than five square metres of driveway and / or it doesn’t drain through a permeable surface, then you will need planning permission. This is because it could add to a floor risk due to the increased surface area. You may choose to consider permeable paving for your driveway project instead, as this not be a flood risk.
  • If you are removing or adding tress, gates or walls then this could be classed as changing the visibility on your road. This means that planning permission for your driveway area will be required. The local authorities will consider if the changes you plan will adversely affect the visibility of drivers down your road.
  • If you are expanding the width of your driveway, you may need to consider a drop kerb to give cars full access to the complete driveway. However, if you would like a drop kerb you will need to speak to your local council about applying for a drop kerb. Residents are not allowed to change local roads and pavements near them without council and planning permission.
  • If you own a listed or historic building, then planning permission will be required. This is because the look and style of the historic property needs to be met. One thing you will need to check is that your listed property doesn’t fall under Article 4 as this can make it very hard for changes to be made.

Fossil Mint Cobbles By SBD Paving


Do I Need To Worry About Drainage For My Driveway?

Good drainage is so important. This is reflected in the ever-growing number of permeable driveway products currently on the market. The great things about permeable surfaces is that they allow water to pass quickly down into the sub-base. This is where it is then stored, channelled or slowly released. This works to prevent and reduce the risk of flooding.

It is essential that water can not be allowed top drain into the main carriageway or the drain in the road. Instead, water must drain into a flowerbed, soakaway or into the drains on your property. If possible, homeowners should have a 20cm strip on either side of the drive. This can then be filled with flower bedding or decorative cobbles to allow for good, natural drainage form the driveway.

There are various materials and products available to ensure your driveway and drainage is safe. For example, grassed areas absorb the water or gravel driveway works well. Alternatively, you can use permeable block paving, porous asphalt or concrete.

Kandla Grey Cobbles - PrimethorpeKandla Grey Driveway Cobbles

Driveway Design Considerations

Straight or Curved?

When thinking about the shape of your driveway you may be limited. For example, if you have a small front garden then there may only be space for the car itself. In which case all your design ideas can be the stones and materials you use, how they are laid and what will surround your driveway.

If you have a slightly larger front garden, you may choose to have a half-moon shaped driveway. Adding gates at the entrance will add to that kerb appeal and offer additional security for your home and family too. This larger space will give you more room for parking. We recommend softening planting at the edges of your driveway to create a really nice look and feel.

For larger front gardens looking to create a smart and formal look, a long and straight driveway can work really well. For added sophistication maybe line either side of the driveway with clipped topiary. Meanwhile, if you have a large country home a curved driveway will work really well. Line the driveway with colourful cottage style plants for a natural and traditional finish.

Black Limestone Cobbles - Chatwin Landscapes

Black Limestone Cobbled Pathway

Access By Foot

It’s important to remember that you will still need to get to your home by foot, as well as car. If the car fills the driveway, how will you or guests get to your home? While the grassed area is an option in warmer weather, what if it has been raining? While a gravel driveway may be wide enough, is it easy to walk on, especially if you’re wearing heals?

Think of the driveway as part of your front garden design, as well as part of your home. When thinking about a footpath, consider something that matches or blends in with the driveway. This could be a wider driveway, or a path attached to driveway for example. Alternatively, if the driveway leads to the garage, why not have a separate path of the same stones that leads to the front door?

Soften The Impact

You can give your driveway character with the right edging. However, without edging it can look like your driveway was just plonked on your front garden. Consider edgings such as bricks, kerbs, cobblestones or treated timber for example. This helps create a border for the driveway and soften the impact of your driveway in your front garden.

Not only will the borders help soften the landscaping edges, it will help provide the essential drainage opportunities that you need too.

Driveway Overview

You should now have a better understanding of the importance factors around driveways. If you need help choosing the right paving materials for your driveway or footpath, call our team or check out our driveway paving options online.

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