Do I Need A Building Permit
The answer is a little complicated because building permits and laws tend to differ between states, cities, and even neighborhoods. You might actually need to acquire a zoning permit instead of a building permit. A zoning permit helps regulate outdoor areas and spaces, while a building permit refers to structures like walls, sheds, rooms, etc.
For raised patios, a rough guideline states that any raised patio under 30 inches in height most likely does not need a permit. Anything higher might need one, especially if you build it on your front yard. These front patios need to meet specific guidelines, like not being too close to the sidewalk and staying within size limits.
If you plan to build an enclosed patio with at least one wall or with a roof, you will likely need a permit. Again, it depends on your local authoritys building and zoning codes, though.
Genius Hacks: 3 Ways To Build A Raised Patio
Were sharing all the tips, tricks & details of building a raised patio with retaining wallalong with our raised stone patio design and cost!
Do you have a sloped area in your yard that seems unusable? Or perhaps you want to avoid a deck off the back of your house and have started envisioning your own way of building a raised patio with retaining walls?
Whatever your need, youre in the right place, my friend!
Were big believers in the power of a raised patio! Sure, a deck could be built to try to utilize a sloped area, but well take a good raised patio on a slope over a deck any day.
Would you like to take a slope where no one could previously sit , and turn that slope into seating for 10, 15, 20or more?
Then read on!
Sweep Sand Into The Joints
Spread dry sand over the stones and bricks and work it down into the cracks with a broom. Tamp with the plate compactor. Keep spreading sand and tamping until the joints are full.
Note: If your sand is damp, spread it out to dry before sweeping it into the cracks. If you run short, buy 50-lb. bags of mason’s sand at a home center or lumberyard.
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Snap A Base Line And 2 Perpendicular Lines
Snapping chalk lines directly in the sand is the best way to keep your bricks running straight. For the running bond pattern, youll only need a baseline and two lines perpendicular to the baseline, offset by half the width of a brick. Mark the rough center and snap a line at right angles using this method:
Brick Patio Step #: Build A Retaining Wall
This is the step that sets a raised brick patio apart from one flat to the ground as it provides the area in which you can add the fill materials that will create the patios base. Start by marking off the boundaries of your patio with stakes. Using a string, line level, and a tape measure, mark the stakes at the height at which you plan your finished wall to reach.
From there, determine how many rows of bricks you are going to need to reach your desired height. Bear in mind that you will end up completely burying the first row of bricks in order to give the retaining wall its stability.
Dig out a 12-inch wide, 6-inch deep trench for your first row and compact the ground firmly in the trench. Add 2 inches of finely crushed gravel and even out the surface. You should also have a string line that serves as a guide for the top of your first row.
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Determine Your Patios Height
Normally, you would want to raise your patio to the level of your house floor. However, you can increase the height as per your requirement.
Determination the height will give you an idea about the number of bricks required for the job.
You can also use a carpenters level for your convenience. It will assist you in marking the required patio height.
Want The Look And Feel Of Natural Stone Without The Maintenance
An Allan Block raised patio may be just what your project needs. You can incorporate curves , corners or even stairs into your patio design. Building a raised patio is easy and can add more usable living space and lasting value to your landscape.
Place the blocks on the base material near the front of the trench
Fill the hollow cores and 12 in. behind the block with wall rock up to the height of the block
Use a compactable rock or sand behind the entire wall. This provides a fill that is less likely to settle over time
Allan Blocks raised front lip provides a perfect edge for AB capstones, or pavers
Choose a flooring option like concrete, pavers, brick or natural stones to fit the design and style of your landscape
Once you have determined the location and design of your raised patio, stake out the location and use a string line or paint to mark out the area. A garden hose is an excellent tool for marking out curves. Then excavate the area by removing all the surface vegetation and organic materials from the area. These cannot be used as backfill material.
- Starting at the lowest point dig a base trench 24 in. wide by 6 in. deep plus 1 in deep for each 1 ft. of wall height.
- Compact the base trench as well as the entire patio base area, making a minimum of 2 passes with a walk behind plate compactor. Compaction of these areas are very important as they make up the foundation of both your wall and raised patio.
Excerpt from Landscape Newsletter Issue #19
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Building A Raised Patio With A View
Heres a sneak peek of our backyard with the mountain range in the distance. I had to stand on top of a chair to get this angle, so you can see how being a few feet higher would assist in the better mountain views we were going for!
I forgot to mention that originally, while balancing on that old lava rock, I first had to trim off several branches from the loquat tree next to it, in order to see the mountains.? If youre a tree lover like I amdont worry. This loquat was small and growing oddly because it had originally been planted too close to the towering ficus trees, and wed already been told by an arborist that it would need to be removed at some point.
You can just make out the lava rocks below the tilting loquat tree in the photo below. Where you see the raised roots of the ficus tree growing into the lawn is the site of our amazing raised patio! Even though it may not look sloped from this angle, it very much is!
How Do You Make A Raised Patio Out Of Brick Pavers
4.9/5How to Build a Paver Patio Overview
How to Build a Raised Patio with Retaining Wall Blocks
One may also ask, how high can raised patio be? Planning permissionthe paving, decking, patio or raised planting area does not exceed 40 cm in height above or below the existing ground level.
Just so, how do you make a small patio with pavers?
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Building A Raised Patio With Retaining Wall
Building retaining walls for a raised patio begins with knowing the dimensions of your patio and where exactly your retaining wall should land to provide the layout for your pavers. If you are unconcerned about the final look in terms of cuts for your raised patio pavers, then you do not need to be as concerned about this. However, we measure the exact dimensions of our raised patio based on the pavers we are laying and where our final caps of our retaining wall will land and ensure our retaining wall is built according to this. You also want to ensure that you are hitting the exact elevation of the raised patio. We measure where we want that to be and prepare our first block course from this, understanding the height of our blocks, how many courses of block there will be, and the height of our caps as these are usually a different height compared to the wall blocks.
We use a string line to map this out and ensure our retaining wall is level and begin to screed and lay our base course. As we build up our retaining wall, we will add geogrid every 4 to 8. Uniaxial is a typical geogrid that is installed in our retaining walls. This provides strength in one direction. However, in a raised patio we want strength in both directions so we opt for a biaxial geogrid and install it throughout the entire raised patio. This helps to tie everything in together and stabilize the base material of our raised patio.
Our Raised Patio Area Before
First, the quick backstory!
When we first bought this house, the outside space may have been what first sold us on it. With an expansive backyard and massive, mature trees over 30 years old, we suspected this might be the perfect house for us and our growing family.
Heres what it looked like when we first toured it:
Do you see the large tree roots in the lawn? Yep, thats where the raised patio now exists!
After moving in, we didnt do much work to the backyard except adding some plants and landscaping.
Over the next several years of living in this house, we slowly got to know all the ins and outs of our backyard.
It was during this get to know you period that I started to realize something:
One of the best views of a nearby mountain range was from a seemingly random spot on the edge of our lawn!
I discovered this one day while walking around the backyard and going through my usual Jess process of reimagining the space.
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Come Up With A Design
The first step doesnt involve dirt or manual work at all. Before getting started with anything, a homeowner should first come up with a design and then draw again in greater detail, trying to include every measurement detail and aspect. The more time spent on this step, the better the patio output will be because the build process has more to follow in terms of direction and application. Remove the guesswork produce a good plan first and then build to it.
That can definitely include resources and a cost budget as well. One might find the local hardware store doesnt include the key materials, which then means the plan has to be redesigned. Knowing ahead of time avoids expensive mistakes later.
Raised Paver Patio Is It A Good Idea
It seems that more and more people are interested in building a raised paver patio. It gives elevation, dimension, and yard separation. What most people dont know about raised paver patios is the failure rate. In the world of hardscaping , raised paver patios are among the most difficult installations to pull off successfully. Here is why:
The first thing I would suggest is remove all landscapers from your bidders list. Landscapers, although this doesnt apply to everyone of them, can typically install simple patios and hardscape projects, but building a raised patio requires a company that has a tremendous amount of experience installing only hardscape projects to understand what to do and what not to do when building a raised patio.
The number one reason for raised patio failure is improper installation of fill and improper fill material selection. Fill is the material used to fill the void between the bottom of your pavers and the ground. In most instances, if youre building a raised patio, you will be adding a substantial amount of fill material. Its important to never use soil/dirt. Dirt, without having VERY large compaction equipment designed specifically for the compaction of dirt, is almost impossible to compact completely. I can almost guarantee if dirt is used as any type of backfill material below your hardscape, it will settle SUBSTANTIALLY.Limestone 411s for paver base in raised patios
Limestone 411s aka Paver Base
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Can I Complete The Project Safely On My Own
President of Stonehenge BPL, Jeff Pozniak, stated, The problem Ive so often seen in my 30+ years in the industry is a fundamental lack of understanding of engineering principles and proper construction methods. With that being said, make sure to carefully review your area, draw out a plan and figure out what you need first.
Since raised patios typically require just a few layers of materials without building a whole structure, you can safely build it on your own. The process is relatively simple and does not require handling dangerous tools.
As the easiest and most durable option, choose concrete pavers or bricks to skip the extra step of cutting out each individual paver. Other popular choices include stone, graphite, and other materials that come in pre-cut shapes like squares and rectangles.
Other tools you might need in addition to your building materials are a rubber mallet, metal spikes to mark your patio outline, a trowel, metal pipes, a rake, a shovel, a plate compactor, and a level.
Our New Raised Patio With Retaining Wall:
Ive never shared this before but do you want to know the #1 thing I would do differently in this raised stone patio now? Because its on a slope that continues even behind the patio, I would have done another stone retaining wall along the back edge to keep the dirt and other debris from falling onto the concrete patio surface.
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Brick Patio Step #: Work From The Corner
Work outward from that corner and use the pavers youve already laid as a guide. Make sure that when youre laying the bricks, you are not dragging them into place or disturbing the sand youve already leveled.
Use a rubber mallet to tap them securely into place. Continue this process of leveling the sand and laying the brick pavers until you have the entire space completed.
How To Build A Raised Concrete Patio
A concrete patio is the next best thing if you are looking for something different than patio pavers. Follow the initial steps up to step 6. Then it is time to establish a solid base, so the concrete does not crack:
- Establish a solid base Lay a level of crushed stones or rocks.
- Reinforce the concrete Establish a rebar grid this will hold the concrete together.
Once that is done and your concrete is mixed it is time to get creative. If you want a simple concrete patio, proceed with the instructions on your concrete mixture. But if you are looking to change things up, there are some interesting options you may want to consider:
- Establish a solid base Lay a level of crushed stones or rocks.
- Reinforce the concrete Establish a rebar grid this will hold the concrete together.
- Concrete forms There are different forms available that you can install and then pour the mixture in. Once the concrete is set, you can remove them.
- Concrete powdered dye You do not have to stick to grey if you do not want to. Once the concrete is poured over the area, spread the dye dust lightly. Then, using a concrete floater and gloves, smooth the tint over the area.
- Textured concrete There are many options available for creating textured concrete by simply adding some mineral salt into the mixture.
Once you have chosen your concrete design, make sure to follow the instructions on your concrete mixture until it fully sets.
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Advantages Of A Diy Raised Patio
The main advantage of a DIY raised patio is its endless customizability. You can create a unique shape, pattern, or layout you feel comfortable with. This freedom saves you from settling for basic designs that you might feel pressured to accept if you were working with a contractor. A raised patio is also easily upgraded with outdoor seating, pergolas, fire pits, and planters.
This beautiful addition is more affordable than a wooden deck, which not only has higher building costs but also requires more maintenance. A deck needs to be polished, power washed, and sealed to shield it against the elements and wear and tear, but a raised patio might just need a little power washing every once in a while to keep it fresh.