Remodeling your bathroom can be a frustrating and expensive hassle. Fortunately, I have a few tips for you that will help answer some common questions about the remodeling experiences. Here are some handy tips for remodeling your bathroom today:
Find the right style and themes
Perhaps the most important tip to consider is to find the right style and theme for your home. Not every bathroom can emulate every bathroom style, and even if a style is popular and “trendy” it may not be the best fit for your home. To begin, you should look at the space you have available and see what fits best into that space.
For example, if you have a small closet area that you are converting to a half bath, don’t try to emulate a style that is more suitable for a full bath. Instead, focus on a theme that is more ubiquitous such as a plain color or solid colors that can fit in both a powder room and any bathroom size in between. Regardless, you should be flexible in your choice of styles and themes.
Stick to a budget
Bathrooms can be quite costly to remodel, which is why many people go over budget. It is critical that you stay within budget or create a budget that is flexible to your needs. To do this, you need to address a few simple questions:
- When are you looking to sell?
- What elements of your bathroom are you looking to change?
- Are you planning to change the location of the plumbing system?
- How much can you afford to invest?
In short, you will need to research local building costs with labor and materials in mind. In addition, you will need to accommodate contractors which can easily pile on the expenses. It is advisable that you remodel for your own use and sensibilities as remodeling for resale comes with a different mentality that might end up more expensive than a general use bathroom.
Your budget should act like a guideline for your project, requiring you to compromise and make sacrifices to essential components, which is key to ensure that your project ultimately can be completed in a timely fashion.
Know your type of bathroom
Bathrooms are available in a wide variety of shapes, sizes and layouts, so it’s key that you familiarize yourself with the different types of bathrooms available.
- Standard or full bath-Contains a sink, toilet, bath, shower or both. Sometimes referred to as a master bath, this bathroom will generally take up the largest amount of space
- Half bath-Contains a sink and a toilet. Otherwise known as a powder room, this bathroom tends to take up the smallest amount of space and can almost be placed anywhere in a home.
- Wet Bath-A full bath that is completely waterproofed, including flooring, cabinets and walls. Combines the same functionality of a full bath, but allows for more efficient use of the space as you do not need to accommodate a shower frame.
Understanding the types of bathrooms can easily help you decide which is the right fit for you and which you can easily accommodate in your home.
Professionals provide a great resource if you are stuck. Their experience can help you develop an appropriate layout for your bathroom and their advice can inform you if your decisions are feasible or affordable. In short, a professional can work with you to create a plan for your remodel so you have a basic idea of how much you are looking to spend and understand how much certain materials will cost you.
Know your bathroom size and dimensions
Understanding your bathroom’s size and dimensions will greatly assist in any remodeling projects you embark on. A larger size will demand more materials and may require you to install additions to your home, whereas a smaller bathroom like a half bath, can neatly be placed into your home and won’t require serious restructuring.
A half bath starts at around 15 square feet, a ¾ bath starts at around 26-30 square feet and lastly, a full bath will run at least 40 square feet. Understanding your bathroom’s size early can greatly reduce your headache in the future.
Map your bathroom layout
Similar to understanding your bathroom’s size and available dimensions, you need to map out your bathroom. This layout allows you to see if your bathroom’s layout actually works. Perhaps you have too much empty space, or not enough space. Maybe you want a bathtub instead of a shower or you just decided that you want two vanities instead of a freestanding sink.
Many designers can provide you with a 3-D model of your bathroom during consultation, so you have a better understanding of how your bathroom simply works. So, before you begin your project, ensure that your bathroom actually works before proceeding.
Determine Floor Options
As we are still in the planning stage, selecting the right floor is another helpful tip. Each material has their positives and negatives, typically revolving around cost and general feel. Although it may be tempting to purchase the most expensive material available, remember that flooring is just one small portion of your overall bathroom so you should be careful with your budget. You simply want to find a material that is affordable, pleasant to touch and is durable enough to support a full bathtub.
Add a bathtub, Shower or Combo
Adding a bathtub or shower to your bathroom will greatly increase the versatility and use of your bathroom. It will also increase the overall value of your home but bear in mind that this will require a somewhat heavy investment as well.
Having both a bathtub and a shower is ideal for a larger home as a shower is intended for more everyday use and a bathtub is a special occasion item. So whenever you can, try to combine both elements in your bathroom if you have the room for it.
Consider different types of sinks
Different sinks compliment different bathroom styles. You have classic freestanding sinks that pair well with both modern and classic sensibilities and on the other hand, you have wall-mounted sinks that are great for saving space while adding a more modern flair to your bathroom. Remember that the space is yours to customize as you see fit, so you should look into what type of sink compliments your bathroom best.
Choose energy efficient Lighting
Energy efficient lighting may not be as luminescent as non-energy saving bulbs, but they will ultimately help you reduce energy costs and are at least 75% more energy efficient. This is key for your bathroom as it is a space that doesn’t require an incredibly powerful light source and you can help lower your energy costs by using more efficient lighting instead.
Figure out Ventilation
Proper ventilation is key for both the health of your bathroom in addition to keeping with city code. Almost every city code requires some form of proper ventilation to avoid trapping moisture in your bathroom that could lead to mold and later structural damage. So before you plan out your bathroom, figure out a proper ventilation system, ideally with both a fan system and a large window to air out your bathroom after a long shower.
Add electrical outlets in smart areas
Electrical outlets can pose a safety hazard if placed incorrectly in your bathroom. To avoid any injuries, be sure to place your electrical outlets in areas that will not come into frequent contact with water. By law, every outlet needs to be a GFCI outlet which will short when it detects an electrical fault, but just to be safe, be sure to properly plan out and place your outlets in safe locations.
Waterproof the right areas
Leaks, cracks and warping are common issues with most bathrooms. This is due to the presence of moisture being trapped in an enclosed space which will incur long term damage if not treated properly. For that reason, it is best to waterproof your bathroom to prevent any issues and guarantee the longevity of your bathroom. Using a sealing solution, seal up any problem areas or consult a professional to help waterproof your bathroom before use.
Consider Color Accents
The color of your bathroom can greatly elevate the look and feel of your bathroom. Even something as simple as painting your accentings can greatly lift up the mood of a dark bathroom or create a more tranquil environment. Green or whites can breathe life into a space, whereas more earth tones create a more spacious environment. With just the right choice of color, you can drastically alter the look of your bathroom to appear more luxurious and comforting.
Mirror Size and Shape Matter
Although it may not appear like it, mirror size and shape matter a great deal to the appearance of your bathroom. Rectangular shaped mirrors are more practical and can fit well in both a classic or modern bathroom.
Irregular shaped mirrors can be visually stunning but are overall less practical than their rectangular counterparts. Wherever possible, the larger the mirror, the more attractive your bathroom will appear.
Don’t forget to have storage
Storage is key in any bathroom as it prevents your bathroom from feeling like one big storage closet. With that in mind, use elements that appear naturally in your bathroom such as accents and the space inside. You can also add in storage containers inside of your vanity cabinets to create more space or create shelves that are not intrusive to your guests. Lastly, if you have a shower, a shower caddy can help to save space while providing additional storage.
Find the right bathroom decor
Similar to finding the right style for your bathroom is finding the right decor to compliment it. Decor can be found almost everywhere, so be mindful of what you want and how it pairs with the rest of your bathroom. Remember to have a general plan when selecting your bathroom decor and that you are free to change it and customize it how you see fit. Though, if something doesn’t work, there is no pressure to simply try something else until you are satisfied with the results.
Shop around for deals
Home remodeling can grow to be quite an expensive and costly undertaking. Shop around for discounts and deals. With many different markets, you may easily discover a toilet or bathtub at even 30-50% discount from their market value. The same goes for fixtures and accents-although it may seem trivial, many aspects of your bathroom will quickly add-up so every little bit helps.
On the inverse, keep in mind for market trends as shortages can quickly add up and place a heavy toll on your budget. Materials such as wood and tile are always in high demand, which means that you must be aware that your project can grow to be more expensive as time goes on.
Consider Resale Value
Resale value is an important consideration when remodeling your bathroom. However, you should be careful about resale value as oftentimes, you will end up spending more appealing to a broader audience than simply adding in what you intend to use. When you remodel your bathroom, choose all the elements that you want and appeal to the style that is right for you.
When it comes to reselling your home down the line, you can look to make small adjustments to better cater to the market then, but for now, choose the elements that appeal to you most and not what’s popular on the market.
A bathroom remodel presents a unique opportunity to create the bathroom of your dreams, but remember to do the right research and understand what your household needs. While there are many popular options available, it is often best to choose a style that suits your everyday needs, instead of chasing after the market. So long as you keep that in mind, you will surely create the bathroom that’s just right for you.