Exposed Aggregate Concrete Costs

Exposed aggregate concrete is a common approach to improving the appearance and functionality of concrete surfaces like driveways, parking aprons, and floors.

The cost to apply average exposed aggregate concrete depends upon surface area, the type and color of stones, special preparation needs, and the labor rate.

In the following table the Labor Cost figure is what the able and prepared DIY persons should expect to save by performing the corresponding tasks.

Exposed aggregate concrete: 500 sq.ft. surface; excavate, prepare, pour, and wash-finish a 2" thick concrete slab with rebar, wire mesh, and aggregate/sand base. Include costs for miscellaneous material, transport, equipment, and waste.

ItemUnit CostQuantityLine Cost
Exposed aggregate finish: medium grade washed colored stones less than 3/8" diameter.$2.49per sq.ft.525$1,309
Upgrade: additional cost to apply decorative acrylic sealant; wet look, non-yellowing, solvent based.$0.28per sq.ft.525$144
Material Cost$2.91per sq.ft.500$1,453
+ Labor Cost (base)$36per hour32$1,152
+ Labor Cost (upgrade)$36per hour15$540
Total Cost$6.29per sq.ft.500$3,145

Other considerations and costs

  • These prices are for service in the immediate area of the provider.
  • Taxes and permit fees are not included.
  • Additional hand-excavation of typical soil will cost around $50 per cubic yard.
  • Typical additional residential site clearing and preparation tasks range in cost from $0.50 to $1.50 per sq.ft. depending on amount and size of material, and transport.

DIY considerations

  • This project is not highly suitable for DIY requiring special tools and skills.
  • Beyond construction skills, realize that concrete is unforgiving of delay as it dries.


  • Craftsman Estimator Costbook, complete series year 2015.
  • Latest prices found on Home Depot and other vendor Web sites.
  • Literature review of DIY Web sites.

Cost to install exposed aggregate concrete in my city

Cost to install exposed aggregate concrete varies greatly by region. To get free estimates from local contractors, please indicate yours.