Skip to Content

Should I Repair or Replace My Driveway?

Driveway Being Installed at a Austin RentalHaving a paved driveway is one of the ideal approaches to upgrade an Austin rental property’s curb appeal. But if your rental’s paved driveway shows signs of wear, you may be doubting whether it’s time for a repair or a full replacement. While each event is unique, by learning about your driveway options and some of the pros and cons of each, you can more confidently decide what to do when the opportunity arrives.

Determine Wear and Tear vs. Damage

At first, it’s vital to decide why your driveway looks a bit worse for wear. Is the surface starting to crack, stain, or develop potholes? Or has natural erosion done a real number on your rental’s driveway surface? Something as minor as a water pipe leak in the yard could erode the soil under a driveway, bringing breaks, holes – and a major eyesore. Depending on how damaged your driveway is, you might have the option to resurface it, or, in more severe cases, it may be better to replace it wholly.

Options for Replacement

One of the more budget-friendly driveway materials is asphalt. But asphalt also doesn’t last as long as concrete and can start to show significant wear after just a few years. Suppose you catch the damage early, and it’s mostly on the surface. In that case, you may be able to add another layer to your existing driveway to restore its functionality and appearance. But if the problems go deeper or affect the soil beneath the driveway, you may need to re-do the entire thing.

Spring or late summer is the best chance to fix or replace an asphalt driveway. Outside temperatures play a major part in the quality of the asphalt as it is laid down, so it is essential to pick a time when extreme temperatures won’t be a factor. Additionally, make sure to choose a professional paving company with quality guarantees. A failed asphalt job can harm your property values instead of raising them!

Although the beginning expenses are often expensive, concrete driveways normally last longer. Concrete will tend to express signs of wear and tear over time, and you’ll need to decide when the time is right to address issues that have formed. One of the significant problems with concrete is cracking and flaking. When visible cracks form, it’s a clue that the surface integrity is failing. Repairing the surface may be a suitable (although temporary) option for small cracks. You can even refinish the entire surface to restore a concrete driveway’s solid appearance.

On the flip side, if you experience drainage issues or cracks wider than a quarter-inch, a patch job won’t succeed. Water will continue to seep under the concrete, freezing, thawing, and wreaking havoc on your driveway’s foundation. If you discover wide cracks, uneven surfaces, pooling water, or other signs, it’s certainly essential to replace all or part of the driveway.

Obligation for Landlords

In the end, landlord-tenant laws in most places state that it is the property owner’s responsibility to keep the property in a habitable condition. If your rental’s driveway is so damaged that it is unsafe to walk or drive on, it’s time to replace it. Holes and cracks can fill with ice and cause safety hazards for your tenants, while potholes can damage their vehicles (and yours!).

Along with the rest of the property, it’s advisable to cautiously monitor the condition of your rental property’s driveway, listen to tenant concerns, and act swiftly. It’s not worth the legal and financial risks to let unsafe conditions be ignored.


Knowing when to repair or replace a rental’s driveway can be complicated. But the good news is that you don’t have to make important decisions like these single-handedly. Instead, think about giving our Austin property managers a call. We can help you budget for larger repairs and renovations your property needs and even handle the project itself. To learn more, contact us online.

We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.

The Neighborly Done Right Promise

The Neighborly Done Right Promise ® delivered by Real Property Management, a proud Neighborly company

When it comes to finding the right property manager for your investment property, you want to know that they stand behind their work and get the job done right – the first time. At Real Property Management we have the expertise, technology, and systems to manage your property the right way. We work hard to optimize your return on investment while preserving your asset and giving you peace of mind. Our highly trained and skilled team works hard so you can be sure your property's management will be Done Right.

Canada excluded. Services performed by independently owned and operated franchises.

See Full Details