Coming Up With a Precise Estimate of Asphalt Driveway Costs
The asphalt driveway has been the most preferred form of paving a new driveway for many years now. There has been more than one reason for this preference. While it adds considerable amount of aesthetic value to your house’s beauty, it also has the advantage of being durable and long lasting. However one question that every person will ask before getting it installed is about how much it will cost? People think that the asphalt driveway will cost them much more than the other alternatives. However, it’s not exactly true. Although asphalt driveway is more costly than the gravels driveway, it covers up for the price gap by being way stronger and durable than the former. Also, when compared to the concrete driveway, the asphalt driveway is much less costly. So how do you decide the overall cost of your driveway? Is there a standard and unified asphalt driveway cost calculator? How can you decide if it is affordable to you even before the installation is done? Read below as we answer these questions in detail.
Well the cost for building this type of driveway depends on a number of factors such as the quality of materials used, the rates of these materials and the profit that the contractor decides to make on it. The cost will also vary according to the area of your driveway. You can find out the estimated cost you will need to incur on getting an asphalt driveway by using any of the below given three methods:
The unit rate method
The important principle of the unit rate method is to multiply the total quantity of your item to its approximate unit rate that is predetermined mostly on the basis of a similar work done in your nearby vicinity. For the asphalt driveway this unit rate is usually varying in the range of $ 2.5 to $ 4. So to find out your asphalt driveway cost you first need to get a measuring tape. Then using the tape measure the length and breadth of the driveway you plan to get installed. Hence you get the area of the driveway. After getting the area all you need to do is to get the area multiplied to the unit rate. The amount you get would be the approximate cost of building the driveway.
Let us take an example. Suppose your driveway is 10 feet wide and 60 feet long. Supposing that the unit rate is in the range of $ 3 to $ 4, the total cost of the driveway would be the area (turns out to be 600 feet squared) multiplied by the unit rate. Hence the driveway would cost in the range of $ 1800 to $ 2400.
The disadvantage of this method to find out the cost of asphalt driveway is that the rates of the material and labor mar vary and hence you do not get a proper idea. Also the method gives you only an approximate idea about the total cost.
However this as a quick method to find the rate and it also gives you a rough idea about the cost and hence puts you in good position to bargain the cost with the contractor.
The total Quantity Method
In this method you need to first decide all the materials that you will be requiring for the entire work to be done. Then the next step is to decide the amount by considering the weight or volume that you will need. We need to take into consideration even some quantity that may get wasted during usage. Once we know all the quantities, we can simply multiply it by the prevailing market rates of these various materials. We then also need to add the labour charges and consider the profit that the contractor would want to make on the entire contract. This method is a more tedious process but it will yield an almost precise amount that you will need to get your driveway installed. Also it will give you a good idea about how much profit your contractor is trying to make on your project and put you in strong position for bargain.
Ask the contractor
This is the easiest method and will give you an exact amount. You can simply ask the contractor to quote the cost of installation of the asphalt driveway. However using this method to find the cost may make the contractor think that you are unaware of the ins and outs of the process and the cost involved and hence may take advantage of the same by charging you much higher than he would do otherwise. Hence, this method is not the way to go unless you are sure of the contractor and his work ethics, or if he is someone you know well.
As a conclusion we can summarize that the answer to the main question “how much does it cost to asphalt a driveway” is around $2.5 to $4 per square feet. As far as comparing it to one of the other most popular type of driveway is concerned, then it will seem much cheaper, as the concrete driveway costs around $5 and above. So, if you plan to build something that would last for years to come and in a cost effective way, then asphalt driveway is what you should be considering.