How to Choose the Right Retaining Wall Design for Your Property

Right Retaining Wall Design
  • Author: Fazal Umer
  • Posted On: March 16, 2023
  • Updated On: March 16, 2023

If you’ve got a sloped yard, you’ll know the struggle of keeping mulch and soil on your property. You might even have pieces of runoff breaking off and going down the slope. Fortunately, you no longer have to live with this mess. Retaining walls are here to help!

Aesthetically pleasing and well-built designs can be a fantastic addition to any landscape. Just take CornerStone retaining walls as an example.

But how do you choose the right one for your property?

We’re here to go over the steps you need to take to choose the perfect retaining walls for your space. Don’t worry! We’ll guide you through each step of the process.

Determine the Purpose of the Wall

The first step when planning the design of a retaining wall is to determine its purpose. What are you hoping to achieve with the structure? Does it have to be aesthetically pleasing, functional, or both?

If all you want is to create an attractive landscape feature, focus on looking for beautiful stones or block designs.

But if your goal is purely functional—such as preventing soil erosion—proper engineering will be even more important than aesthetics. For example, you could focus more on proper drainage or its overall stability than the design.

No matter what type of wall design you choose, make sure that it meets your needs and isn’t just aesthetically pleasing. After all, some designs may look great but won’t provide enough structural support for your property’s landscaping.

By determining the purpose of the wall before building it, you can ensure that it serves its intended purpose for years to come!

Evaluate the Different Material Options

When choosing a design, you’ll also need to consider what type of material to use for your wall. Be sure to do your research before deciding on one! Each material has pros and cons when used for retaining walls.

Concrete Blocks

Concrete wall blocks are a popular choice. This is because of their versatility and durability.

They come in many shapes and sizes! This means you can create interesting patterns with the blocks. Plus, wall installation would be easy!


Brick is another great option for retaining walls. It adds an attractive finish to your property’s aesthetic. Its look adds character and blends into the landscape better than larger materials like poured concrete.

Plus, brick allows for some flexibility in design. You can mix colors, sizes, and textures to create something unique.

Natural Stone

You may also want to explore natural stone. It comes in various colors and textures, which blend nicely into almost any landscape design.

If you’re looking to install gravity walls, a natural stone finish would be perfect.

Consider the Maintenance Requirements

It’s easy to pick a great design only to find out later that maintaining it takes far more time and money than expected.

A typical example is selecting a wood fence. Wood fences are often seen as a beautiful addition to any landscape. But they require regular staining and conditioning to prevent damage from the elements over time.

Failing to maintain a wood fence regularly can lead to costly repairs down the road, so be sure you’re prepared before committing to this retaining wall design.

On the other hand, interlocking concrete blocks require little maintenance once installed. So if you’re looking for an attractive wall with minimal upkeep requirements, this might be the perfect option.

Understand Code Requirements and Regulations

Depending on where you live, the height requirements could be different. Plus, building too tall of a retaining wall without permission can result in heavy fines from your municipality.

Apply for building permits before getting started on your retaining wall. Check all requirements. Also, make sure to adhere to the standards.

Research local code requirements to determine the maximum height permitted for your proposed design. Also, check into soil types and load-bearing capacity. This can limit how high you can build your wall.

Lastly, make sure your retaining wall stays within your property lines!

Choose a Style That Reflects Your Property’s Aesthetic

You want to choose a style that reflects your property’s look and feel. Your retaining wall should blend in with existing landscaping. It should also provide a cohesive look throughout your landscape.

If you have a modern home, consider a contemporary-style retaining wall made from modern materials. Look into using stainless steel or concrete planks.

If you have an old-fashioned, cozy cottage-type house, go for stone or brick. This would give your property that homey vibe.

And if you want a rustic aesthetic, opt for natural rocks or wooden logs. These can create an organic, earthy atmosphere.

Calculate Your Cost Estimates in Advance

Before building your retaining wall, you need to calculate your cost estimates.

Start by looking at the materials you plan to use. Then, compute the number of hours you’ll need to complete the job. Make sure you also factor in additional expenses like painting supplies or landscape fabric.

Consider hiring professionals if you’re unable to do work onsite. Or do so if you don’t have experience with building materials or construction techniques.

Find The Right Contractor

Once you have chosen the right retaining wall design for your property, it’s time to find a contractor to build it.

An experienced contractor will have the knowledge and tools to construct your wall properly. They will also make sure that it is structurally sound.

Start by researching contractors in your area. Look at customer reviews and past projects they’ve done. This would give you a better idea of their skills.

Once you’ve narrowed your search, meet with potential contractors. Ask questions about their experience building walls like yours. Make sure you find a contractor who is fully licensed and insured. You’ll also want someone who can provide references from other clients.

A solid retaining wall starts with quality construction. When done properly, it will last for years. So choose your contractor wisely!

Choosing the Right Design

The right retaining wall design isn’t just a matter of aesthetics. It’s also a question of practicality and safety.

No matter what style you go with, make sure it’s up to code in your city or county. It has to meet your area’s structural requirements, too. Remember that a bit of planning and research goes a long way to ensure that your walls last for years.

With all these tips, you can easily choose the perfect retaining wall design for your property!

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Author: Fazal Umer

Fazal is a dedicated industry expert in the field of civil engineering. As an Editor at ConstructionHow, he leverages his experience as a civil engineer to enrich the readers looking to learn a thing or two in detail in the respective field. Over the years he has provided written verdicts to publications and exhibited a deep-seated value in providing informative pieces on infrastructure, construction, and design.