Unfortunately, concrete gets kind of a bad rap these days and is hugely underappreciated. For most people, it is a go-to material for driveways, garage floors, and maybe to secure the odd fencepost.
But did you know that concrete is so much more than that?
It has a broad range of applications that can add value, interest and even aesthetic appeal to your property.
From enchanting garden paths to cosy firepits, concrete deserves a second glance. So, let’s look at why it is a fantastic building material, and how you might use it on your property.
So what exactly is it?
We all know that driveways and footpaths are made from concrete. However, do you know how it is made?
Concrete is comprised of – water, aggregate (which is either rock, gravel or sand), and cement ( a mixture of compounds). When all three are mixed, it creates a sludgy mixture which can be poured and manipulated.
The cement is what binds everything together to form the finished product. This then cures and hardens over time to create an incredibly strong final result.
What Are The Benefits Of Concrete?
Here are some of the benefits of this versatile material:
Durability – It is incredibly durable! Resistant to wind, water and fire, it also doesn’t rot, rust, or fall victim to insects. In fact, it will outlast most other common building materials.
Low maintenance – Other than the odd resealing or water blasting, there’s very little you need to do to keep it in good condition.
Energy-efficient – It is a material that retains heat, so can cut down your heating bills.
Sustainable – low energy cost, high durability and low maintenance make it a sustainable building material used in many “green builds”. Concrete is recyclable to extend its life.
Safety – This is a family-friendly material that is both fire-resistant and strong.
Economical – Designed to last a lifetime, it is more cost-effective (and environmentally friendly) than shorter-lived materials
Versatile – You can quite literally manipulate it to form any shape you like. Colouring, staining and stamping are just some of the different finishes.
Ideas For Your Home And Garden
So, now that we know what a great material it is, let’s look at some ways you can showcase it in your outdoor space….
Pathways And Stepping Stones
Cobblestones, pavers and rocks can be pricey additions to a garden, but concrete is a great alternative. While you can opt for a basic poured path, modern concrete is almost an art form.
Outdoor Kitchen And Dining
Kiwis adore their BBQs and love nothing more than getting outside to do some outdoor cooking.
Instead of plopping your bbq out onto the back deck, why not create an outdoor cooking or dining area?
You can use a concrete block as the base (or utilise the colouring or stamping if you want to be a little fancy), incorporate raised garden beds, bench seating (yes, from concrete) and even a fire pit.
If you want to up the ante, how about an outdoor hot tub? Of course, you will need a concrete pad to keep it from sinking into the dirt!
If you are in the market for some unique planters, seating, or even a corner relaxation nook, this versatile product has you covered. Using simple moulds and a bit of kiwi ingenuity, you can create some unique talking points around the house.
Concrete can help level up your outdoor areas in a unique and sustainable way. Whether you want to add value to your property or enhance your lifestyle with gorgeous and practical entertaining areas, this material will do the job beautifully, and last the distance.
Here at Market Ready, we have plenty of experience in working with concrete and would love to transform your outdoor living space. Get in touch with us today to discuss your next project. In the meantime, you can learn more and view samples here.
The difference a concrete stain makes is remarkable, this before and after is a great example of how it lifts a property.