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How much of a problem is a sloping garden?

(10 Posts)
Weta Tue 29-May-12 18:35:20

We're having a house built with a very small garden (8m by 10m). The garden has a 15% slope going downhill from the house, although there will be a flat patio area right by the house. We've been given an expensive quote for flattening it out and putting in a retaining wall, and can't decide how important this is.

Any views?

OP’s posts: |
tricot39 Tue 29-May-12 19:02:13

Friends of ours have a sloping garden. They couldnt really use it but had all the hassle of mowing a large patch of grass on the slope. In the end they had a terrace built and now they actually get some benefit from it. If i were you i would get it done while the house is being done as that will be the cheapest way and you will not need to suffer the inconvenience of the works going on. It will be more expensive and inconvenient later. You might be able to get the price reduced by reducing the spec on the wall - eg blockwork instead of bricks etc but it is a big job so it will not be cheap.

wild Tue 29-May-12 19:03:52

depends what you want it for. rubbish for football, as my ds is always complaining, but could make an attractively planted bank. Depends what you want

mrswee Tue 29-May-12 19:06:09

We are in the process of buying a house with a slopping garden.
I would def say it is a down side to this purchase but I know a garden designer and he had assured me there is a lot that can be done with slopping gardens to make them functional. Ours also has a flat area that is not that big then a slope down to a wall at the bottom, the whole area is built on a hill. the gardens below are a drop down from our wall and also slopped, this probably means we can't flatten it as it would create a lot of pressure on the wall so we will be terracing it instead with various growing beds and some raised veg beds.

Weta Wed 30-May-12 08:02:00

Thanks for all your comments, it sounds like we should definitely think about getting it done. We've been quoted 5000 euros for a 1m wall along the back and a 60cm wall along the side (made of prefabricated L-shaped blocks), which seems exorbitant but we'll see how we go. We may be able to lose the side wall and just have a bank there instead.

A friend suggested it might be cheaper to get it done after construction by a smaller firm rather than the developers, but it's a terraced house and there won't be any way of accessing the garden except through the garage/laundry (we live in Luxembourg which is why the layout may sound a bit strange!).

OP’s posts: |
tricot39 Wed 30-May-12 20:22:44

The price might be a lot to do with the poor access if most of the house is already built and they have to barrow it all in.

10mx8mx0.75m = 60 cubic metres of material to bring in to raise the levels.
That is about 10 skips worth of soil!
Then they have to get the precast walls made and also lifted into position - possibly with concrete foundations below them?

Maybe it is not as pricey as it first looks!

You might get away without the 600mm side wall if you can get banking to work. It might not make a massive difference to the price, but every little helps!

wfrances Fri 01-Jun-12 11:27:54

first house we had a sloping garden- it was a waste of space -couldnt use it/mow it ,for children it was crap

Weta Fri 01-Jun-12 11:47:31

Sorry Tricot39, I only just saw your message... no they do have access as it's a new development and they are building the whole row of 4 houses, which are pretty much the first ones to be built. I think they can probably use soil that they excavated in order to build the house foundations, although I could be wrong.

As you say though, it may not be as outrageous as it first sounds. On the side, only 400mm of the wall is above ground so I'm hopeful that it may be ok without it. I think we will be having a meeting on the site with the new neighbours sometime soon, so I guess that will clarify things a bit.

wfrances - thanks for confirming what everyone else seems to be saying too!!

OP’s posts: |
Fizzylemonade Fri 01-Jun-12 12:15:26

Part of our garden slopes, we have a flat bit at the top end, then it gradually slopes down. The children love it as they get to ride their diggers/sit on cars down it.

BUT it floods the patio area when we have heavy rain. We are having a kitchen extension built next year so will need a not very tall retaining wall built, only about 20cm so our garden isn't that sloped, but the builders will be putting a drain in.

You can have a drain like you get in front of a garage door, or you can have a concealed one using gravel as a drainage pit, and there are tubes which have holes in that you lay under the grass to help divert water somewhere.

Terracing is an option but speak to a landscape gardener, it is expensive digging all the soil out.

RedHelenB Sat 02-Jun-12 21:10:36

Get it levelled - we didn't in intially & should have,

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