Decide on the budget : Installing a patio is expensive but it is worth spending as much as you can afford as the patio is such an important part of the garden. The garden should be viewed as an outdoor room and if you are prepared to spend a little extra on getting it right it will be useable for most of the year. Allow around £120 per square metre as an all-in cost to get a contractor to lay your patio.
Brick : Brick is one of the most popular choice for patios because it is easy to install, looks great and is preferred by most DIY enthusiasts. This type of patio material offer a very traditional look in terms of warm, earthy colors and last a long time. Bricks can be installed on sand base or concrete pavements regardless of whether you use mortar or not and extremely durable in cold climates. It can have a variety of patterns as well because of its uniform shape and size, thus add a lot of personality and individually to your patio. The color of brick looks extremely nice and attractive on a patio especially if it is surrounded by a garden.
Real Stone : Stone has the most natural outlook, most durable but also the most expensive type of patio materials. It require good skills to install because each stone greatly varies in shape and size. Additionally, mortar compound is used to adjoin these stones and settle as they dry. It is designed to wear well in high-traffic, need little maintenance and could last for decades.
Cheaper Indian Sandstone is not always the bargain it appears as it is thinner, or poorer quality and more porous causing leaching of the minerals in the mortar onto the top surface of the stone. There are some inexpensive granite slabs currently available that make a wonderful surface only slightly more expensive than Indian Sandstone. The more expensive options are Travertine, York stone, Basalt, and Marble.