4 Reasons Natural Stone is Worth the Added Cost Over Concrete for Your Pool Surround

Posted on: 7 February 2018

Experts predict an in-ground home pool will cost anywhere from $6,500 to $100,000, so most people look for ways to cut down on costs. Opting for a concrete surround instead of paving with natural stone can seem like a good idea, but concrete lacks many of natural stone's more appealing benefits.

Here are just four reasons why choosing natural stone paving for your pool surround is worth the cost over concrete.

1. More Attractive

When people picture concrete, they tend to imagine the typical bare grey surface commonly seen in parking garages and driveways. However, you can make concrete more attractive by adding colours during the manufacturing process. That said, concrete pool surrounds will rarely look as attractive as natural stone paver surrounds. Most of the time, people will try to mimic the appearance of natural stone, but it's still easy to tell the difference.


  • Stone surrounds look more natural, so they lend themselves well to outside spaces.
  • Stone can be matched to garden walls, the patio, and other elements of outside landscaping more effectively than concrete.
  • If more than one load of concrete is required, the colour might not match perfectly between them.

Your swimming pool is going to be a focal point of your garden, so it makes sense to spend a little more on a stone surround instead of going for a less attractive alternative like concrete.

2. Stone Doesn't Crack

Yes, concrete surrounds will cost less at first, but perhaps not in the long run. One of the major problems with any kind of concrete surface is that it can crack when the ground beneath moves or when weather conditions are extreme. In fact, concrete is almost guaranteed to crack after a few years have gone by. Such problems obviously need to be fixed; if you don't fix those cracks, moisture will leak in and then freeze, expanding as it does so to cause even more damage. Repairs are expensive, and it's practically impossible to match the appearance of the repaired area with that of the original concrete.

Stone doesn't crack or heave. Even if repairs are necessary, it's much easier to carry them out since paving can be installed piece by piece. You'll only need to repair the ones that have been damaged, and it's relatively easy to match colours and shades. You can even add or change pavers in the future if you want something different.

3. Stone Makes Underground Issues Easier to Fix

One thing people often fail to consider is that their pool may develop underground issues. The plumping, for example, may start to leak. It's important to repair such underground issues, and, while they will often be expensive, you can make things easier and less expensive by fitting a stone surround instead of concrete.

As mentioned above, pavers are laid down one by one, so they can be removed one by one to get at the affected area underneath. With concrete, you need to break into the surround right to the foundation. Repairs will be very conspicuous, and you may have to remove a large section of concrete.

4. Stone is Naturally Slip-Resistant

Finally, keep in mind that stone is naturally slip-resistant. This is obviously a concern around a pool. The surround will often get wet and be walked on with bare feet, and any slips can cause injury. Stone is rough enough to stop you slipping and yet not rough enough to be uncomfortable.

Concrete is different. Unless textured, it becomes very slick when wet. If you do texture it, it can become uncomfortable to walk across without any shoes on your feet.