Per Square Metre Pricing For Artificial Grass
Comparing professional installation prices to DIY
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Whether you’re fed up with your lawn looking like a muddy field, or you just want a low-maintenance garden so you can bin the lawnmower, artificial grass could be the solution.
- No more grass cutting.
- Say adios to hayfever.
- Mud and bare patches will be a thing of the past, as will summer scorch.
- No watering.
- Forget weedkillers.
- Ditch the lawn fertilisers.
I worked as a project manager for many years in the landscape gardening trade, and part of my role was to get quotes from businesses and oversee artificial grass installations. I have a wealth of first-hand experience in landscape gardening on both small projects and much larger developments.
Here I’ll explain how much artificial grass costs.
Our Artificial Grass Installation Prices
Below you’ll find two price lists, one for the professional installation of artificial grass in your garden – this price is based on figures given to me by a selection of firms I contacted in the UK.
The second price list provides you with a ‘per square metre’ price for the supply of artificial grass for a DIY installation, and I’ve included everything a DIYer will need, including sand and weed-proof membrane. This price list is based on my experience of installing artificial grass and published prices for the materials.
Prices Per Square Metre: What The Installers Told Me
As a project manager, my role often included sourcing prices for projects such as artificial grass, so for this price guide, I contacted 12 installers from around the UK and gathered prices from them.
The table below displays an average of the figures provided to me and I’ve rounded them for simplicity:
How to Use The Price Table
You should first measure your lawn area to calculate how many square metres of artificial grass you’ll need.
This calculator can help you if your garden has an irregular shape.
Then select which type of artificial grass best suits your needs – budget range, standard or premium.
The price per square metre is shown in the corresponding box I published.
What’s Included in the Price Table Above
The price table above includes all of the following:
Excavation of the garden – The depth will vary, but based on my experience and the installers I’ve worked with in the past, I believe the topsoil and any grass, etc., should be scraped off to a depth of no less than 100mm.
Weed proof membrane – This stops weeds from growing through the artificial grass. I’ve seen projects where this wasn’t fitted, and the weeds did poke through and cause problems.
Sub-base installation – I’ve seen poor-quality artificial grass installations where the fitter laid it onto the ground without first spending time building a solid sub-base. In my opinion and based on my experience, I feel that the sub-base is one area where the installer shouldn’t cut corners.
Perimeter fixings – I’ve seen installers secure artificial grass using pins inserted into the ground, by using glue or by fixing it to treated timbers that are embedded in the ground at the edges. I prefer the treated timber method, but the pin method is also effective. I don’t recommend the glue method as I’ve seen some fail in the past – the wind lifted the grass and blew it down the road.
Bedding sand – Every professional installer I’ve worked with laid down a layer of sand on top of the compacted hardcore and below the artificial grass, which acts as a cushion. I’ve seen poor-quality projects where the installers laid the artificial grass directly onto concrete. Not only was the surface uncomfortable, but it also wore out within a few years.
Finishing sand – I’ve seen installers skip this step, but if sand is brushed into the artificial grass, it helps to secure it in place and hides the backing layer. I’ve also found that it makes the artificial grass more comfortable underfoot and helps it stand more upright and look natural.
Waste disposal – Based on my experience, the excavation of 100mm of topsoil in a 50 sq metre lawn would create enough waste to fill a skip. Waste disposal is included in the prices I’ve shown above.
VAT – Value Added Tax is included in the prices shown above.
The Three Types of Artificial Grass Explained
There are three types of artificial grass to choose from:
Budget Range – This material is the thinnest you can buy, often 20mm or less. I’ve found it fairly hard underfoot, and at the lower end of the price range, it won’t have the longevity of more expensive products, especially if subjected to lots of foot traffic and usage. I’ve seen this type of artificial grass at events or on displays but it’s rarely found in gardens. I can only recommend this product for gardeners who won’t be walking on the lawn much and who are on a tight budget.
Standard Range – With thicknesses varying from 25-35mm, I’ve found that grasses in this range also have more strands per square metre and are much heavier and softer underfoot. Just from touching them, I can tell they are designed to last longer under normal usage and are suitable for families and pets.
Premium Range – From what I’ve seen and my experience, I feel that the most expensive artificial grasses are usually 35mm or thicker and have a higher density of fibres, are softer underfoot and are designed to last longer, even with frequent usage and foot traffic. They also have the most realistic appearance, in terms of colour and shape.
DIY Installation Price
Below you’ll find my second price table, which includes prices for the supply of artificial grass and all the materials a DIYer needs to install it.
The prices below exclude the cost of labour, waste disposal and tool hire etc.
The prices are based on published price lists for all the materials I feel are required for a DIY installation.
I’ve installed artificial grass myself several times, and I’ve worked with expert installers so I’m confident my price includes all the materials you’ll need, and I’ve displayed the price per square metre for your convenience:
This is What’s Included in the DIY Artificial Grass Installation Prices
The DIY prices above exclude the cost of the labour, tool hire, equipment and waste disposal but include:
- The artificial grass.
- Weed proof membrane.
- Hardcore (also known as MOT Type 1).
- Perimeter fixings (timber).
I’ve calculated the cost of a DIY artificial grass installation, and below is a price breakdown where you can see exactly how much each of the materials cost per square metre.
You’ll find this table very helpful if you’re planning a DIY installation.
All of the prices include delivery and VAT and are per square metre unless stated in brackets ().
Get a Custom Price For Artificial Grass
Tap the button below to get a custom price for artificial grass.
- Answer a few questions online.
- Provides details of your location.
- Get a fast response with no obligation.
- Online prices.
- Takes minutes.
My Opinion of Artificial Grass
I’ve noticed that the quality of artificial grass has improved considerably over the last 15 years, the first projects I was involved in were 20 years ago, and the grass didn’t look or feel real, but that really has changed.
I’ve found that the premium range of artificial grass sold at around £35-40 per square metre are very realistic and soft.
DIY installation prices for a typical installation range from £35 to £55 per square metre, but you’ll probably need to hire or buy some tools and arrange for waste disposal too.
Professional installation prices for a typical installation range from £50 to just over £85 per square metre, depending on the quality of the grass.
Don’t forget; if you have a very uneven garden, you may need to fill in large areas with more MOT type 1 hardcore at extra cost.
Also, the prices on this page exclude:
Hence why I feel you should always get a fixed custom quote before planning or budgeting for a project like this.
Can an Artificial Grass Installation be Completed Cheaper?
Of course, there will always be firms that can sell and/or install artificial grass for less than the prices I’ve suggested on this page.
I’ve seen some firms use less hardcore in the base; others use less sand to reduce costs. I’ve even seen cases where they didn’t create any base whatsoever.
Smaller firms don’t charge VAT if they have yearly earnings below a certain threshold, and some firms always use the cheapest materials they can find.
Also, there is a huge difference in the profits a larger company will expect to make compared to a smaller business.
As always, my advice is to source quotes from several different suppliers and installers for comparison.
Why You Can Trust DIY Gardening
Even though I have plenty of experience in laying artificial grass and turf, I’ve fully researched the prices being charged by expert installers in the UK before publishing this price guide.
The price guide is based on prices from 13 independent installers from various locations in the UK.
For my DIY price guide, I used The Calculator Site to work out how much of each material I needed and then gathered prices from online retailers that sold and delivered the materials, including:
Grass Direct (Artificial Grass and weed membrane)
Travis Perkins (timber sand and MOT 1)
I worked on a project several years ago, and Perfect Grass Ltd installed the artificial grass. I was impressed with their workmanship, and they’ve published an excellent installation guide with photos here.
Author: Daniel Woodley
In his spare time, Daniel enjoys gardening, hiking and scrambling. He frequently posts videos to his popular YouTube Channel and is well known in the hiking community.
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