Go Green

As you’re working with a landscape designer to turn your outdoor living dreams into reality, it’s important to keep in mind your budget range. With careful planning and advice from a professional, you’ll be able to get the most from your backyard hardscape budget.

Keep these common factors in mind as you plan. These four areas will largely determine the overall cost of your project.

  • Scale – The scale, or size, of your backyard hardscape project will play a large part in your overall budget. Obviously, smaller projects should cost less than larger ones.
  • Landscape features – What features are most important in your project? Are you wanting a pool or other water feature? Do you have a patio in mind or an expanded outdoor kitchen? Doing your research and listing your desired landscape features in order of importance will help you set a realistic budget for your project.
  • Existing site – The current conditions of the site you’re designing will affect your bottom line. If significant work needs to be done leveling, removing trees or solving water runoff issues, your budget will need to be bigger. Working with a professional will help you determine what the true cost of preparing the site for construction should be.
  • Materials – The materials you choose to use will affect your budget, but they’re also what helps create the finished look of your backyard hardscape. Ideally, you’ll want to choose materials that enhance the look of existing architecture.

By working with a designer, you can determine your wants and needs early on to ensure your satisfaction with the final outcome and your bottom line.

For help planning your backyard hardscape, contact the pros at Associated Construction Projects. We’re a leader in landscape design and can help you with any phase and size of project.

From outdoor kitchens to patios, pool decks, walkways and retaining walls, Florida homeowners have so many opportunities to add value and beauty to their properties. Smart homeowners are choosing permeable concrete pavers as one of the best options for sculpting the yard into an inviting and livable space. Pavers are available in an array of colors and shapes, and they can be arranged into standout, custom patterns that erase any sense of cookie-cutter landscaping.

Some people think they will save money by choosing colored or stamped concrete for custom-designed driveways, patios or walkways. Unfortunately, concrete often cracks over time. It’s virtually impossible to make a patch look right, especially if you have to match a stamped or colored pattern. A fabulous hardscape design can soon look neglected and rundown.

Because concrete is nonporous, this material also creates a problem with storm water runoff. Oils and chemicals on the surface are carried with the water into the storm drain and make their way directly into area streams, endangering plants, fish and other wildlife. Sediment in the water builds up and harms the habitat, and excessive nutrients lead to algae blooms. Household chemical runoff can poison or taint fish, sickening them or making them dangerous for other animals or humans to eat.

Permeable concrete pavers are a green alternative. Rather than trapping rainwater on the hardscape and pushing it into the storm drain, the surface is designed to allow water to filter through the base material and down into the ground. The filler materials as a filter, removing many pollutants before the water can reach the aquifer. Since the ground in the yard retains this natural moisture, the surrounding plants may require less irrigation between rainstorms.

Maintenance is also simplified with concrete pavers. The color runs throughout, so small chips are not immediately visible. Damaged pavers can be easily replaced, and the surface is designed to be non-slip, which is especially important around the pool and near the outdoor kitchen.

ACPFL specializes in custom installations of green pavers in Florida. Our design pros have years of experience creating eye-catching, fabulous hardscapes that are perfectly suited to the home and its owners. Our portfolio includes outdoor kitchens, patios, walkways, decks, retaining walls and more. We’ve been in business since 1990, and we stand behind all of our work. We’re listed with the Better Business Bureau, state licensed and insured. We’re also certified by the Interlocking Concrete Pavement Institute, which requires extensive training and demonstrated skill.

With today’s newer permeable materials, you can feel good about protecting the aquifer while dressing up your home. And you can feel good about choosing ACPFL.

A long driveway sweeps around to a matching walkway with steps to an expansive front patio. In the back, beautiful pavers create a pool deck and accent a spa, curving retaining walls frame multiple levels of plantings and an outdoor kitchen opens into a comfortable living area. In the front and back, coordinating stone material anchors columns and the mailbox. This elegant vision begins with a hardscape foundation of professionally designed and installed pavers.

Permeable interlocking pavers are a green, eco-friendly choice that sets an impressive tone for your Florida home or business. Landscaping and hardscaping projects are an excellent way to instantly add curb appeal and value to a property. Many homeowners find that paying attention to the outside of the property gives an immediate boost to the home’s value of at least 5 percent, up to about double the project’s cost. Pavers are available in traditional and modern styles, with colors to fit every style.

One of the most important issues with hardscape installations is drainage. If the project isn’t done correctly, water can puddle on the hard surface or even drain toward the house. This can require inconvenient and costly repairs to the foundation and may even necessitate removing and reinstalling the pavers. Porous or permeable interlocking pavers help solve this problem with very little extra work or expense up front.

Porous products allow water to seep right through the pavers. Permeable interlocking pavers are typically nonporous and look like traditional pavers, but water channels down through the joints to the ground below. These materials are considered to be green since they reduce runoff into storm drains and help filter pollutants that would otherwise end up in the groundwater.

An experienced, professional installer can also make a big difference in the customer’s satisfaction with the final results. ACPFL has been serving Florida, area since 1990. We are licensed by the state and fully insured. We’ve also taken the added step of completing the training and certification program offered by Interlocking Concrete Pavement Institute. All of our customers can rest assured that we have the skills, knowledge and experience to properly complete residential and commercial projects alike. We stand behind our work with a quality guarantee.

The elegant look and green sensibility of pavers could add thousands to your property value while adding exponentially to your enjoyment of your home. Let ACPFL create a customized hardscape plan for your yard.

Having a beautiful Florida home with no landscaping is like wearing a special outfit with cheap flip-flops. It’s possible, but it just doesn’t look right. Even a modest landscaping project will add curb appeal to the front yard or livable space to the backyard. A larger renovation with concrete pavers, a pool deck, retaining walls and improved drainage can create an impressive oasis outside the home.

Landscaping refers to the selection and arrangement of plants and trees in the yard. Hardscaping is the use of stone, pavers and concrete to create retaining walls, walkways, driveways, patios and decks. It provides a foundation for plantings, mulch, water features, an outdoor kitchen and other elements. Professionally designed hardscaping sculpts the property and enhances the natural beauty of flowers, grasses, shrubbery and trees.

A yard improvement project is one of the wisest investments that homeowners can make. It’s a project that can boost the home’s property value by as much as double the amount of the project budget. One study found that attractive landscaping and hardscaping increases a home’s overall value between 5.5 percent and 12.7 percent. On a $250,000 house, that’s nearly $32,000 in value just waiting to be added.

Unfortunately, many homeowners take a piecemeal approach to the yard and make little random changes over time without following a master plan. This often results in an uneven mishmash of plantings and styles, detracting from the home’s appearance. On the other hand, a professionally designed hardscape sets the stage for an appealing and elegant landscape. For high-end properties, this kind of detail is an absolute must — especially if the home will be going on the market. If the budget is tight, retaining walls, concrete pavers and other hardscape materials can be installed in phases, following a comprehensive design plan that ensures everything will work well together.

ACPFL creates customized hardscape plans and installs interlocking pavers to enhance front yards and backyards of all sizes throughout Florida. We specialize in pool decks, retaining walls, concrete pavers and permeable pavers that allow drainage through the material and into the ground. ACPFL is licensed and insured, and we’ve worked hard to earn certification from the Interlocking Concrete Pavement Institute. Pavers are available in various materials and colors, and an eye-catching installation pattern can be tailored to each individual site.

A plain, unfinished front yard or backyard is not only a lost opportunity for curb appeal and livable space, but it can actually drag down the overall value of the property. Let your yard live up to its potential with a beautiful, professionally designed hardscape.

The outdoor kitchen is the new frontier in home improvements. A well-designed outdoor living space may seem like a splurge at first, but there are practical reasons to think about sprucing up the backyard for cooking, eating and entertaining. This renovation project adds value to the property, creates a more comfortable living environment and can even have a green effect on energy consumption.

At the end of a long, hot day, Florida residents know there’s not much appeal in firing up the oven to make dinner. Standing over a hot stove is downright miserable. Meanwhile, the air conditioner is already working hard, racking up higher and higher energy costs. Add in the extra blasts of heat from cooking in the kitchen, and it’s a recipe for out-of-control utility bills.

Power companies around the country agree that a much greener option is to head out to cook on the grill, leaving the heat outside where it belongs. It’s a modern take on the old summer kitchens once prevalent in warm-weather regions. Households with a standard electric oven will likely see the greatest savings from grilling out since electricity typically costs more than natural gas. With a conveniently arranged, fan-cooled outdoor living area to lure the family out of the house, it may even be possible to bump up the temperature on the thermostat inside for additional savings.

Interlocking pavers are the perfect building blocks for an energy-conserving outdoor kitchen. The pavers form a flat area for cooking and dining, and they can also be used to visually divide the space. It’s possible to create architectural interest in the form of retaining walls, built-in bench seating, planters and even the base for counters, a barbecue or other kitchen equipment. Permeable pavers have the added benefit of allowing rainwater to filter through the material and drain naturally into the ground below.

ACPFL offers an array of interlocking pavers in different materials and colors to build a customized hardscape for a green outdoor kitchen to match any decor or landscape design. We’ve constructed beautiful outdoor living spaces in residential and commercial spaces across the greater Tampa FL area. Our company has earned certification from the Interlocking Concrete Pavement Institute and is fully licensed and insured. Every project receives the personal attention that’s needed to ensure the client is totally pleased with the results. Let ACPFL help you create an attractive, functional outdoor living space that could bring some big energy savings.