Best choice - durable, low-maint. attractiv mid cost decking

Nov 1, 2007
Hello all,

I am a total newbie getting ready to pull the trigger on a pool build, and I am a bit lost as to what type of decking to use around the pool.

The house is brick, and the pool will be off the back of a screened in porch with white columns and a dark-colored slate-look green ceramic tile floor. The house is about 2-3 months away from completion, so there is no existing hardscape to worry about. The lot slopes, but not too drastically, and it slopes from left to right, so I assume this may help some with going from shallow to deep end. I am looking at a 12' x 46' or a 14' x 40' gunite lap pool with very few bells and whistles above a ledge seat, heater, and SWG. (No water features, spa, etc.) The house is on the edge of a deep woods.

I have attempted to add a copy of the hardscape design to this, so you can get a better idea of the layout. I really like the way he has done it, but I don't think I am going to be able to afford the infinity edge, so I would like ideas for decking all the way around.

It has been all I can do to get my husband to agree to adding a pool to the build because he does not think he will use it, but I will be able to get his OK if I keep the costs for everything relatively reasonable.

I would LOVE some suggestions on what type of decking to use around the pool. Because we have so much outdoor seating already - screened porch, deck and patio - I don't need a whole lot of decking. There are also only the two of us (no kids), and we entertain minimally. So, maybe just enough around each edge to access for cleaning, and some deck space between the screened porch and pool for a couple of loungers would be good.

Please let me know what you think would be a good choice. I don't really like "busy" patterns of different colors. I do like pavers, and I was wondering about integrating brick somehow too without making the whole thing brick. Maybe concrete with some brick dividers? Maybe pavers with some brick? Are pavers really expensive?

This may sound kind of silly, but I am wanting a calming "Zen" kind of space with a resort-type of feel to it.
Thank you all SO much for any advice. :)



LifeTime Supporter
May 8, 2007
Katy, TX
Just to give you an idea of price difference in my experience, I think I paid about $8 per sq ft of stamped concrete decking, whereas the builder wanted about $12 per sq ft of pavers. Hence, we chose the stamped concrete.



LifeTime Supporter
Oct 5, 2007
Valrico, FL
We put in colored concrete pavers around our pool. They come in a wide variety of colors, shapes and thicknesses. We like them because of drainage, water on them just runs into the cracks between them and then into the ground. You have no more of a drainage issue then you do without them.



LifeTime Supporter
Aug 24, 2007
Drifting the watelands of NJ
I went with stamped because of the cost over pavers. Here's another choice though. You could go with a colored concrete (even less expensive than stamped) and then use a paver or a brick as a border. I've seen that before and it looks nice. For example I was quoted per square foot:

5.00 for concrete
6.00 for colored concrete
@7:00 for Cool deck (concrete like substance with texture)
8.00 for stamped
12.00 for pavers
Nov 1, 2007
Decking choices


I am leaning right now toward the pavers, but the PB I'd like to go with is giving me a price of $20sf! Yikes.

Can someone recommend a brand of pavers that might be not quite so expensive, but still nice?

I had asked him about Pavestone, and he said they were a Home Depot product that he did not think I would be happy with. I did go look at them at HD, and they did not look very nice.

Any ideas?



LifeTime Supporter
May 4, 2007
You might want to sub contract your own decking if you want pavers. I built my pool in April 07 and concrete has gotton expensive in FL. Pavers were only $2 a sq ft more than just plain concrete. But with pavers you need a solid compacted base and a written clause that they will come out and fix any issues. Also the border is important so that the pavers do not shift and start to spread. The good thing about pavers is if you use a sand base, they are fairly easy to fix.


Well-known member
May 14, 2007
I like the look of pavers plus you don't have to worry about cracking like you do in a concrete deck. The downside is if you have a looplock type of cover the anchors are going to be pulling on the pavers depending on your pool geometry. In a kidney pool this is only a problem on the narrow part of the kidney that forms the outside bend in the middle the other areas will distribute the pulling force like is done in an arch or dam. If I was having pavers installed I would let the fill around the pipe area settle over the winter so that you don't crack any pipes vibrating the subsoil to prepare the base. Come early spring you can have the rest of the base installed and then the pavers installed. What's nice about pavers is any problems can be fixed with a little time but no heavy machinery is needed like would be necessary to bust up concrete. Where most concrete decks are isolated from the bond beam by a layer of tarpaper or something else the coping stones on a paver installation should be physically attached to the bond beam. I have concrete but should have spent the extra money for pavers. If your pretty handy you can do the paver installation yourself and save a fortune. I did a patio and saved $7,000.



Well-known member
Mar 29, 2007
Paver's are very popular around here(AZ), because they don't crack and are more
appealing than plain concrete. The installation is only as good as the installer. The edges should
be cemented and the ground and final lay compacted with a power plate compactor.

They hold up on driveways just fine and require no maintenance. They are
hot to walk on in the sun so other materials are preferred for the pool deck.

Cliff s