How do I figure out the average cost of a new driveway?

Updated April 17, 2017

The cost of a new drive depends on two factors: materials and labour. These costs will vary depending on the region where you live. You can choose from a wide variety of materials when constructing a drive -- asphalt, coloured asphalt, concrete, stamped concrete, cobblestones and bricks -- with asphalt and concrete being less expensive than cobblestones or brick. To caculate the cost of a new drive, begin by choosing the material.

Research the cost per square foot for the material of your choice in your area. For example, cobblestones can cost as much as £3 each while asphalt is installed at a much lower cost. You may need to purchase base materials to go beneath the surface material. Research the cost of base material, such as crushed gravel or washed-out concrete.

Measure the driveway to determine the area in square metres. For concrete and asphalt driveways, you need to determine volume, so you will need to know the depth as well.

Calculate area by multiplying length times width. To calculate volume in cubic metres, multiply length times width times depth or thickness.

To estimate labour costs, assume the contractor will charge 10 per cent of the cost of the materials, though this amount may vary considerably depending on your region.

Add the cost of the materials to the cost of labour to arrive at an estimate of the total cost for constructing your new driveway.


Complete a rough estimate using these steps before calling for a minimum of two free estimates from reputable contractors.


Labor costs are the most difficult to estimate because they involve the time required to complete the job, the number of workers and overhead costs such as insurance and equipment maintenance, all of which are highly variable.

Things You'll Need

  • Measuring tape
  • Calculator
  • Computer with Internet access (optional)
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About the Author

Patricia Harrelson is a retired college English instructor who began writing in 1987. She writes about education, communication and theater in publications such as the "San Francisco Chronicle," "California English" and "Central Sierra Seasons." She specializes in Web content, including blogging for businesses. Harrelson has a Master of Science in speech pathology, and a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from Antioch University.