Home renovations are always a daunting prospect. There’s the potential disruption to your routine, the cost, and the inconvenience. There are reasons to put it off for as long as possible. Things can get especially tricky when remodeling bathrooms or kitchens, as there are practicalities like plumbing, wiring, and gas supply to consider.
Have no fear! Your dream remodel is 100% possible. You just have to approach it with the right attitude, and make sure you’re making informed decisions every step of the way.
How much a bathroom remodel is likely to cost really depends on how much work you plan to do, and what standard of finishes you’d like. For a cosmetic remodel (paint and accessories), you might spend only a couple hundred dollars. If you rip out the entire thing and start again, you might run up a bill of several thousand dollars. If, like most people, you don’t have an unlimited budget, you might want to make a list of everything you’d like to do with the bathroom if you had the money. Then, once you’ve decided on your actual budget, prioritize the list and take away the low priority items. You can always come back to them later once you’ve got the high priority stuff done and saved some extra cash.
When setting your budget, don’t forget to include labor costs, unless you plan to do the entire thing yourself. If your remodel includes wiring or plumbing, you’ll likely need to bring in an expert, so make sure you have a realistic expectation of how much they’ll cost. Be sure to build in a small amount for emergencies, too, in case the project runs over or unexpected costs arise.
Consider the space.
Bathrooms are entirely practical in nature, so when remodeling, it’s important to make sure you prioritize functionality over all else. This is especially important when working with smaller spaces. Though a huge soaker tub might sound appealing, it’s not of much use if you can’t get anything else in! Have a long, hard think about how you use your bathroom and its individual features. If you’re installing a family bathroom, for example, you might need additional storage or space for a step stool. If your bathroom is somewhere you or a family member is likely to apply makeup, you need to make sure there’s a good-sized mirror, as well as excellent light.
If you aren’t planning to reroute your plumbing or wiring, you’ll be limited in your layout choices as sinks, toilets, showers, and baths will all need to be placed pretty much exactly where they are. Even with everything laid out as it was before, you can make a huge difference to your bathroom by choosing high-end finishes and keeping sanitary ware sleek and appropriately-sized for the space you have. If you’re planning to make changes to your plumbing and wiring system, make sure to check with your plumber/electrician to identify any potential problems, and make sure the resulting layout will work.
To trend, or not to trend?
When remodeling any room of your home, especially the bathroom, it can be tricky to know whether to go with your gut or follow current trends. Remember that while you want your bathroom to be a relaxing and beautiful space, as we mentioned above, it needs to be functional above all else. Not all trends will give you that practical comfort that makes a bathroom great.
Wet rooms have become hugely trendy in recent years, but this one trend has serious practical usage, too. Yes, they’re beautiful, modern, and sleek, but they’re also fantastic if you have mobility issues, or small children who might struggle to step in and out of a shower or bath. It’s possible to install a wet room yourself if you’re confident in your DIY skills, but be careful. They can get cold and damp fast if not waterproofed properly, so you might want to bring in an expert.
Doing it yourself
If you’re looking into how to remodel a shower on a budget, then you might be keen to do the work yourself. If that’s the case, you need to make sure you have a concrete plan in place for de-installing the old bathroom and reinstalling your new one. This is always important, but it’s especially crucial for bathroom remodels (kitchens, too) as the consequences of getting it wrong are higher because of the amount of water that’s used every day. That’s before we consider what happens if a toilet isn’t installed correctly!
The toilet should be the first thing to go. Make sure to drain it first, and then carefully remove it – you don’t want any spills! The bath comes next. Take the surrounding tile off first, and then remove the bath (taking the tile off first helps you see where the plumbing is). If you need to, you should then remove any unwanted insulation from your walls. Once all that’s completed, you can go ahead and take out other furniture such as mirrors, basins, vanities, tiles, and so on. Just make sure to be careful of pipes and wiring! Putting a sledgehammer through a pipe accidentally can be costly and time-consuming.
As well as the big stuff like furniture and plumbing, you want to make sure your completed bathroom has those final little touches that make a remodel truly special. Choose a specific bathroom paint in a neutral or reasonably muted shade. It’s not often that bright red walls are considered relaxing. Choose matching bath and sink faucets in a metallic finish for the final flourish.
If you’ve upgraded your storage cabinets, either by buying new ones or just adding a lick of paint, you might also want to upgrade smaller items such as soap dispensers, cups for toothbrushes, and so on. Hey, why not also treat yourself to new towels and toiletries while you’re at it? Go all in. You deserve it!