Is Composite Decking Cheaper Than Paving?

January 2024
Anton White

Navigating the world of outdoor flooring can be a maze of choices and costs, and a common query we encounter is whether composite decking is cheaper than paving.

This question is pivotal for homeowners who are weighing their options for a garden makeover. In this article, we delve into the intricacies of pricing, comparing the initial outlay and long-term value of composite decking against the traditional paving route.

By exploring various factors such as installation costs, maintenance, and the impact on property value, we aim to provide a comprehensive understanding that goes beyond the price tag.

So, is composite decking cheaper than paving? While it can be, the answer is nuanced, and as we unpack the details, you'll gain the insights needed to make an informed decision for your outdoor space.

What this article covers:

Is Composite Decking Cheaper Than Paving?

After extensive research and practical experience, we've found that the question of whether composite decking is cheaper than paving doesn't have a one-size-fits-all answer.

While composite decking can be cheaper, the cost-effectiveness of each option depends on various factors, including the quality of materials, the complexity of installation, and the long-term maintenance requirements.

Cost Of Composite Decking

At Ovaeda, our composite decking boards strike a balance between high quality and affordability. The pricing for our composite decking varies, reflecting the diversity in styles and specifications.

composite decking or patio

Generally, our boards range from £30 to £50 for 3m planks. It's important to note that these prices can vary depending on additional factors such as the need for subframes, which provide structural support, or balustrades, which are railings that can add safety and aesthetic appeal to your decking area.

Cost Of Paving

When it comes to paving, our porcelain paving slabs offer a blend of elegance and durability, making them a popular choice for patios and garden paths. The cost for these slabs ranges between £20 and £50 per square metre.

It's crucial to remember that these prices don't include the costs associated with preparing the base and installation. The installation of paving can be more labour-intensive and complex, potentially requiring professional assistance.

This can add to the overall cost, especially for intricate designs or larger areas. The base preparation is also a critical factor, as it ensures the longevity and stability of the paving.

What's the Difference Between Composite Decking and Paving?

Property Value

When assessing the impact on property value, it's crucial to understand that both composite decking and paving can significantly enhance the aesthetic and functional appeal of outdoor spaces.

Composite decking, in particular, has gained a reputation for offering a substantial return on investment. On average, a well-installed and maintained deck can recoup around 70% of its cost, adding a contemporary and stylish touch to properties.

composite decking vs patio

This high ROI is often attributed to the modern look and durability of composite materials, which appeal to potential buyers.

In contrast, patio paving, while still adding value, typically sees a slightly lower ROI, ranging between 50-60%. The difference in ROI can be influenced by factors like the choice of paving materials and the design's integration with the overall landscape.

Maintenance Levels

Maintenance demands are a significant factor in choosing between composite decking and paving. Composite decking stands out for its low maintenance requirements. Unlike traditional wood decking, it doesn't need staining, sealing, or sanding.

A simple routine of cleaning with soap and water is usually enough to keep it looking fresh and new. This ease of maintenance is a big draw for those who prefer spending more time enjoying their outdoor space rather than maintaining it.

On the other hand, depending on the material, paving can have varying maintenance needs. Stone paving, for instance, may require periodic sealing to protect against weather elements and staining.

While generally low-maintenance, especially when compared to wood decking, some types of paving might need occasional cleaning to remove moss, algae, or stains, ensuring they retain their aesthetic appeal over the years.

Ease Of Installation

The ease of installation is another area where composite decking and paving differ significantly. Composite decking is often favoured by DIY enthusiasts due to its relatively straightforward installation process.

Many composite decking options come with user-friendly systems, like interlocking tiles or easy-to-handle planks, making them ideal for those who enjoy weekend DIY projects. Additionally, the lightweight nature of composite materials makes them easier to handle and cut to size, further simplifying the installation process.

what is cheaper composite decking or paving

Paving, in contrast, can be more challenging to install. It often requires a level base and precise placement of each slab or stone, which can be time-consuming and requires a certain level of skill and experience.

Materials like porcelain are particularly demanding, needing specific tools and techniques for cutting and laying. This complexity often means that paving installation is better suited for professionals, which can add to the overall cost and timeframe of the project.

Benefits of Composite Decking

Durability And Longevity

One of the standout advantages of composite decking is its exceptional durability and longevity. Engineered to endure the rigours of outdoor environments, composite decking resists common issues that plague traditional wood decking, such as fading, staining, and scratching.

This resilience is due to the unique composition of wood fibres and recycled plastics, which together create a material that can withstand harsh weather conditions, from the scorching sun to freezing snow.

Unlike wood, you're much more likely to find heat resistant composite decking, and with high-quality materials you'll have to deal with very little composite decking scratches or composite decking warping.

This means that composite decking not only maintains its appearance year after year but also requires far less upkeep. Homeowners can expect their composite decks to last for several decades, often with warranties extending up to 25-30 years, ensuring long-term enjoyment and peace of mind.

Aesthetic Appeal

Composite decking offers a wealth of aesthetic options to suit any style preference. Available in a diverse range of colours and finishes, it can effortlessly mimic the rich, natural look of traditional wood decking without the associated maintenance headaches.

From warm earthy tones to cool contemporary hues, there's a composite decking option to complement every outdoor design theme. The textures and grain patterns are carefully crafted to resemble real wood, providing the beauty of a classic wood deck with the benefits of modern technology.

And while your composite decking fading might be natural for the first 6 or so months depending on the type you choose, it quickly settles into a stable and stunning colour.

This versatility in design allows homeowners to create stunning outdoor spaces that reflect their personal style while ensuring the deck remains a visually appealing feature of their home for years to come.


In today's environmentally conscious world, the eco-friendly nature of composite decking is a significant benefit. Many composite decking products are made from recycled materials, incorporating reclaimed wood fibres and recycled plastics.

This sustainable approach not only reduces waste but also minimises the need for new timber, helping to preserve forests. By choosing composite decking, homeowners are making an environmentally responsible choice, contributing to a greener planet.

Additionally, the long lifespan of composite decking means less frequent replacement, further reducing environmental impact.

The low-maintenance nature of the decking also means fewer chemicals are needed for upkeep, making it a more eco-friendly option compared to traditional wood decking treatments.

Benefits of Paving

Versatility In Design

Paving stands out for its unparalleled versatility in design, offering homeowners a broad canvas to express their creativity. The array of styles, colours, and textures available in paving materials is vast, ranging from the rustic charm of natural stone to the sleek, modern appeal of porcelain.

composite decking or paving

This variety allows for the creation of unique patio designs that can complement any architectural style or garden theme. Whether you're aiming for a traditional, cottage-style garden path or a contemporary, minimalist patio, paving provides the flexibility to bring your vision to life.

Intricate patterns, bold colour contrasts, and varied textures can all be achieved with paving, making it an ideal choice for those looking to make a personal design statement in their outdoor space.


Durability is a key advantage of high-quality paving materials, particularly those like porcelain, which are known for their strength and resilience.

These materials are engineered to withstand the rigours of outdoor environments, including extreme weather conditions, temperature fluctuations, and heavy foot traffic. Porcelain paving, for instance, is highly resistant to fading, scratching, and staining.

Natural stone options, such as our Indian sandstone, are also renowned for their longevity, offering a timeless aesthetic that ages gracefully. This durability ensures that your paved areas remain functional and attractive for a long time, making it a wise investment for any outdoor space.

Low Maintenance

The low maintenance aspect of most paving options is a significant benefit for busy homeowners. Paving typically demands minimal upkeep, unlike other outdoor flooring options that may require regular sealing, staining, or pressure washing.

Simple routine cleaning, such as sweeping and occasional rinsing, is often enough to keep paved surfaces looking their best.

Some materials, like porcelain, are particularly low-maintenance, as they're non-porous and resist staining, requiring little more than a quick mop or hose down to remove dirt or spills.

Should You Get Composite Decking or Paving?

The choice between composite decking and paving boils down to your specific needs, preferences, and budget. If you value ease of installation, low maintenance, and a high ROI, composite decking is a fantastic choice.

For those who prefer a wide range of design options and a solid, durable surface, paving could be the way to go.


Whether you choose composite decking or paving, both options can enhance your outdoor space beautifully and add value to your property. Consider your lifestyle, maintenance willingness, and budget to make the best choice for your garden.

At Ovaeda, we're here to help you create the outdoor space of your dreams, be it with our top-notch decking or our elegant paving solutions.

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