An overview of what influences flagstone prices
Average flagstone prices from around the country:
This price includes the base material (either concrete or compacted sand and gravel) and mortar, and labor costs.
$2.20 sq/ft - Jacksonville, FL
$3.06 sq/ft - Albuquerque, NM
$3.20 sq/ft - Richfield, WI
The ultimate cost of any flagstone paving project will be expressed in price per square foot installed. These prices can be massaged up or down depending on the kind of stone you choose and where it comes from.Influences on Flagstone Cost
- Some flagstone is more expensive because it is difficult to obtain or limited in availability.
- Flagstone shipped long distances can be more expensive due to fuel costs. For example, bluestone mined in Connecticut will cost a great deal to ship to California because it must be shipped across the entire continent. With rising fuel prices, this becomes a more significant percentage of the installed price.
- Installation for factory cut edges is less expensive than irregular stones because irregulars require chipping and fitting
|Pro Tip: Flagstone installed with open joints that have been filled with gravel or planted with groundcover is relatively inexpensive and can run as low as $10 per square foot on new construction. Flagstone with mortared joints, which is much more durable and attractive, can range between $20-$30 per square foot on new construction.
- Roger Haywood, Accent Landscapes in Colorado Springs, CO
Compensating for VariabilityFlagstone is a natural material and thus quite variable. Experienced contractors have learned to order at least 25% more stone than they estimate for the project due to some very important factors.
- Even when taken from the same quarry, it will not necessarily match the same stone from a deeper level or slightly different area. For this reason, contractors prefer to order at least 25% more stone than originally estimated to eliminate the potential for a second order if they run short.
- Flagstone is irregular in shape and it must be pieced together into a mosaic. There must be sufficient choice to complete this mosaic at the end of the process when there is little left to pick from.
- When using thin veneer flagstone laid over a concrete slab, the pieces are more prone to cracking or even breaks. The overage ensures there are enough extra to compensate for these losses.
- Lots of uniformly colored flagstone often contains odd pieces that don't match. A larger quantity ensures there will be alternates available on site without reorder.
Maureen Gilmer, contributing writer for Landscaping Network, author and syndicated columnist
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