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Bedroom Renovation Guide: Checklist of the Steps to Follow

Last modified: 2020-07-28 | Approximate reading time 18 mins

The bedroom is not like other areas in the home. It is a place of rest and privacy where it’s important to feel comfortable. For this reason, the room's layout and decor are important and redesigning and personalizing this room can help one feel even happier in their home.  

We have published many articles on our home renovation blog, some of which have been about bedroom renovation projects. To help you with your current project, we’ve decided to create a guide where all the important information is gathered in the same place, along with a checklist that you can use to follow how the project is evolving.  

Would you like to jump directly to the checklist? Click here! We also have a version that has already been filled out to give you an idea of how to use it (click here).  

BEFORE YOU START THE PROJECT

Design chambre à coucher_bedroom design

If you’ve landed on this article, this means you’re probably already thinking about renovating a bedroom. Before you truly start working on concrete elements of this project,  it will be important for you to properly establish the objectives behind this project.

THE KEYWORDS OF BEDROOM RENOVATION PROJECTS

Comfortable 

Knowing that most people don’t sleep enough and that several factors about the environment that surrounds them can have an impact on sleep cycles, the layout of the bedroom should be designed to foster comfort and relaxation.  

Welcoming 

Having a comfortable bedroom is great, but it should also be welcoming! A nice layout with high-quality materials and decorative elements that give character to the bedroom is the perfect recipe to create a dream bedroom.  

Personalized 

Lastly, since the bedroom is one of the most intimate spaces in a home, it’s the best place to have fun with the décor! If the room is shared by several people, you can try to harmonize the styles and preferences of each person or create defined areas so that everyone is happy.  

Rénovation de chambre à coucher_bedroom renovation project

HOW TO DETERMINE YOUR NEEDS

If you’ve decided to renovate a bedroom, this means that the room does not suit the needs of the person that is occupying it (you, kids, guests, roommates). It’s not hard to find ideas for home décor and bedroom layouts but before you start renovating, make sure these needs that are not being fulfilled will be satisfied through the changes you will be making.  

You can spend hours checking out Pinterest, the IKEA catalogue, décor magazines and all that jazz. However, avoid focusing only on the aesthetical aspect of the room. Also, make sure that the layout is practical and ergonomic.   

To make sure that the bedroom fulfills the needs of the person that will be occupying it, here is a set of criteria to consider:  

  • How much it promotes rest; 

  • The durability of the materials;  

  • The amount of storage; 

  • The decor that creates a nice personalized space.  

Design de chambre à coucher décor_bedroom design and decor

QUESTIONS TO ASK YOURSELF WHEN PLANNING A BEDROOM RENOVATION PROJECT 

We can confidently state that the vast majority of bedroom renovation projects are not as complicated as kitchen transformation projects. In most cases, bedroom renovations will not imply as many steps or complications as they aren't as likely to require work on plumbing or electrical systems.  

However, this does not mean that we can improvise and get good results. Things must be done in the right order and the right questions should find answers to end up with a project that makes sense. Here are a few examples of questions that will help you plan the work and how it progresses. 

Where is the bedroom located? 

Is the room located in a confined space, at the end of a hallway, at the top of a narrow staircase or in a room with an unconventional shape? Note the aspects that characterize the space, as this will have an impact on the types of furniture and materials you can use.  

Did the room already serve as a bedroom? 

The level of transformation will be different if the room was not used as a bedroom in the past. For example, in cities, people often transform double rooms into two separate rooms. In that case, you must think about building new walls, adding doors, even windows.  

This also applies to unfinished basements. Before you set up a bedroom in there, you need to make sure the space is adapted to accommodate people. Think about insulation, floor covering materials, ventilation, natural light and so on.  

Are there optimal conditions for sleeping?  

We quickly mentioned this in a previous paragraph, but we have to reiterate how important it is to make sure the room offers good sleeping conditions. Each person is different and has their own needs in terms of sleep, but certain points are valid for everyone:  

  • The room should be well-ventilated;  

  • The light that penetrates from outdoors should be limited at nighttime; 

  • Avoid having a room that is overloaded with furniture and decorative elements;  

  • The bed should be placed strategically (to avoid drafts, being exposed to light, having people need to step over furniture to get around);  

  • It’s best to avoid setting up an office or a workshop in the same room; 

  • The colours should be adapted for sleeping, especially near the bed. 

What about soundproofing?  

Soundproofing is one of the main factors to ensure comfort in a bedroom. This is an issue that concerns both sounds coming from outside the room and those that are produced inside.  

Without going into explicit descriptions, we know how most people want to feel comfortable in their bedroom without having to think about sound levels that could bother other people in the home. For example, think about a teenager that loves to play loud music.  

That’s why we must make sure that the walls, doors, windows and floors offer a good level of soundproofing in the room. We will tackle this question in more detail in another section of this article.  

Is there enough storage? 

Even those that adopt a minimalist lifestyle will often be faced with a lack of storage in their bedroom, so it goes without saying that the situation is even more common for those who own a ton of clothes, a figurine collection, a selection of books worthy of the biggest libraries or a series of nail polish bottles for each colour of the rainbow. Storage is the crux of a proper layout for a bedroom.  

Scie entrepreneur rénovation_ table saw renovation project

WORKING WITH A CONTRACTOR FOR A BEDROOM RENOVATION PROJECT 

You can use this guide to complete the project yourself or to work with a contractor. Would you prefer to hire experts? Check out our guide on how to find the right contractor for your renovation project. 

Even if you decide to take on the project yourself, you will probably have to hire contractors for certain parts of the project such as the electricity or the plumbing (if you have a bathroom that is next to the bedroom). Find out about the 7 renovation projects that should always be left to professionals.  

Are you looking for certified contractors who could help you with your project? Fill out the form HERE to be put in touch with specialists that are a part of our network. 

One important thing to remember: you must always have written contracts with your contractors. Would you like to know why? Check out our article: Renovation Project: 3 Reasons to Sign an Official Contract

Chambre à coucher moderne style_bedroom modern style

THE RENOVATION BUDGET

The budget that is associated with a bedroom renovation project can vary from one extreme to another. Indeed, the final amount will depend on several factors such as the materials you will use, the work to be completed, the scale of the transformation and the choice to hire certified labour (or not).  

To be able to determine a number, organize your priorities, see if you’d rather spend more money on high-quality materials and talk to specialists (designers, contractors). Check out our article How to calculate a realistic home renovation budget

Here are a few cost calculators that could help give you a general idea for certain projects that are a part of a bedroom renovation:  

Plan architecture chambre à coucher_bedroom architecture plan

PLANS AND BLUEPRINTS FOR YOUR BEDROOM RENOVATION PROJECT 

Starting any renovation project with a plan is highly recommended. Even though a bedroom renovation project is less risky than a bathroom or a kitchen renovation, starting things without having a drawn plan increases chances that complications will arise.   

This is even truer if you are looking to create a space that is well designed as well as beautiful. You can hire an interior designer, an architectural technologist or an architect to create the plans.  

Not sure who to contact to create the plans for your new bedroom? Here are a few articles to check out:  

Belle chambre à coucher chaleureuse_welcoming bedroom decor

THE TYPES OF MATERIALS 

To create a pleasant bedroom, you should opt for materials that are high-quality and that offer comfortable surfaces, especially with regards to floors and furniture.   

Wallcovering materials 

When comes the time to choose your wallcovering material, you will have plenty to choose from! Here are a few examples of materials and products that you can use to dress the walls in your room:  

Paint 

Even though it is the most popular option, this doesn’t mean it’s boring! Choosing from an infinite variety of shades and a wide array of textures and finishes, you can create a drastic transformation using a roller, a paintbrush and a can of paint.  

With regards to ideal colours for bedrooms, we can repeat that it’s always better to opt for shades that are optimal for sleeping but we know that since this is a highly personal room where some people want to be creative, you may want to choose brighter paint colours. What’s most important is to create a room where the occupant will feel comfortable.  

Here are a few articles that will be useful as you work on preparing your bedroom painting project:  

Wallpaper 

The variety of wallpaper models available on the market is enough to silence the skeptics. Between the temporary wallpapers, the permanent installation products, the bold designs and the subtler choices, there is so much to choose from. To give a touch of originality to the bedroom you are creating, this is a great option.  

For more information about wallpaper, check out this article:  

Decorative panels 

What falls under the umbrella term of “decorative panels” is a variety of materials sold in the form of panels that can be installed directly on walls. In most cases, the installation process is quite simple and accessible. Although costs can vary depending on the type of material and how solid the panels are, there is something for every budget. Therefore, even if you have a limited budget for your wall covering, this is an option that can be considered.  

Learn more about decorative panels through our article 

Wall covering materials: decorative panels 

Rénovation de chambre à coucher mur de briques_bedroom with brick wall

Brick or stone 

Brick and stone are structural and decorative elements that have been around in homes for hundreds, even thousands of years. This is one of the reasons why these materials have been able to adapt to decor styles throughout the years. We associate stone and brick with a modern aesthetic, but also to more classical environments, depending on the other decorative elements and the type of stone or brick that is used.

If you have a limited budget, you can always opt for decorative panels that recreate the look of bricks or stone. However, it’s also possible to install the real material. However, this type of project will be more complicated and expensive.

To learn more, check out these articles:

Wood 

Shiplap, which is a type of wall covering that is made of wood panels, has been trending in the past few years, to the point that we almost see too much of it when searching on Pinterest or looking gat home renovation TV shows. However, this does not mean that it’s a bad option. When they are well harmonized with the rest of the decor, they can add a lot of warmth to the room and create a beautiful design.

Concrete 

If you are looking for something bold, think about concrete. You may believe that concrete is not appropriate for bedrooms. However, there are ways to integrate this material into the room to get nice results. Do you like modern decor styles? Do not hesitate to discuss this with the people who will help you create the decor in your future bedroom.

For more about concrete as a wall covering material, check out this article:  

Chambre à coucher aménagement rénovation décor moderne_modern bedroom decor and style

Flooring

When it comes to the bedroom, there are three main factors to look at when choosing a flooring material: comfort, aesthetics and maintenance. Since we live in a country where the climate can be very cold, it’s best to avoid materials that can create thermal shocks under the feet when getting up in the morning, such as ceramic tiles.

We mention this as in some parts of the world, it’s quite common to see bedroom floors that are made of tile or stone. It’s not recommended here unless you install a floor heating system under the tiles.

It will be best to look at the following materials, and you’ll see that there is plenty to choose from!

Wood- Versatile, timeless, noble, wood adapts to all types of decors and you will be amazed by the wide array of essences available on the market.

Vinyl- Are you looking for a material that is easy to install and maintain? Vinyl may be a good option. It’s also likely that you will find a design that you enjoy, as there are options for all tastes!

Linoleum- The era of ugly linoleum floors is over! These days, linoleum products are resistant, eco-friendly and adapted to different types of decors.

Bamboo- This material offers interesting characteristics for a floor. Often less expensive than hardwood,
it is highly resistant and available in a wide variety of shades and finishes.

Carpet- Full-carpet flooring is less and less common. In the past, this type of flooring was very popular, but it is not recommended as carpeting can be hard to clean. However, if there is one room in the home where carpeting is still relevant, it has to be the bedroom, as this material is very comfortable.

Chambre à coucher mobilier_bedroom furniture

Bedroom furniture

We won’t spend a lot of time talking about furniture, as unless you decide to have it custom-made, chances are you will head to a furniture store to find what you are looking for.

Here are the basic elements to include in a bedroom:

  • The bed (headboard, mattress, frame) 

  • Storage furniture for clothing 

Optional but useful:  

  • Bedside tables 

  • A chair 

  • A desk 

  • Shelves or a bookshelf 

The most important thing to remember when you are thinking about how to integrate the furniture in a bedroom is that these pieces should occupy the space in a logical way, thus creating a layout where one can easily move around. Avoid designing a room that is overloaded, even if you like big furniture and prefer maximalist to minimalist style. This aspect is important when looking to create a room that is welcoming and that offers a healthy environment.

Find ways to free the space and integrate storage that can be integrated within the decor. Check out this article for a few ideas:  Renovation project: 4 ways to transform your bedroom

Bedroom furniture that has been created by a carpenter

Would you like to hire a carpenter to build a bed and custom furniture? In the past, this was common practice and there are good reasons to do it these days as even though it may be more expensive, you will have unique furniture pieces that will last a lifetime.

Garde robe rangement chambre à coucher_bedroom closet storage

Closets and other storage spaces

Storage is a concept that is essential throughout the house, but it is especially important in the bedroom, most of all if, like most people, you plan to store your clothes here. Ideally, the bedroom will have a closet that is built into the wall, but it’s surprising to notice how often architects decide to omit this structure to save space. This makes things more complicated and you’ll have to look for good furniture that is not too cumbersome.

If you have access to a space that is built into the walls, maybe even a walk-in closet, you should think about optimizing it during your transformation project. There are many accessories, small pieces of furniture and structures that can help you maximize the way you use your closet. Check out these articles for storage ideas in the bedroom:

Luminaires chambre à coucher_bedroom lighting

Lamps and natural light

Bedroom lighting should be designed so that it can be adjusted according to the time of day. To promote sleep, it’s best to have dim lighting in the evening, as this will help produce melatonin that is essential for good sleep cycles.

At night, the room should even be completely dark. Unless the room’s occupant sleeps with the light on, this also means that you will need good curtains to reduce the amount of light that penetrates from outside.

And since during the day, it can be pleasant and useful to have a well-lit room, both with natural light and lamps, the layout you will create with your light fixtures should be well-thought-out.

Here are a few articles about lighting: 

Insulation and soundproofing 

Since we don’t see soundproofing and insulation materials, it’s easy to forget them as you plan the renovation project. Nevertheless, these materials play an extremely important role with regards to the comfort level of the room’s occupants. First of all, because insulation helps maintain a comfortable temperature all year long.

Insulation is also important, not only because of the fact that many people are light sleepers but also because the bedroom is a place where most people want to enjoy some degree of privacy.

To learn more about insulation and soundproofing materials, check out these articles: 

décoration de chambre à coucher_bedroom decor

BEDROOM DECOR

Decorating a bedroom is a very special challenge. Some people decide to fully focus on the practical aspect of the room, thus creating a minimalist environment. Others will have a field day working on the decor, as they look to enjoy the freedom that comes with decorating a private room that is suited to custom preferences. There is something for everyone!

Finding your own decor style is not easy. You can look at home decor magazines, avidly follow home renovation TV shows and add thousands of images to our Pinterest boards but eventually, you'll have to make decisions.

To avoid long-lasting hesitations, we recommend that you talk to design and home decor experts. They will be able to help you target your preferences (or those of the person who will be using the room) and create a room that will answer your needs. Here are some articles about decor styles:

Chambre pour enfants_kid's bedroom

KIDS BEDROOM 

Does your project involve transforming a bedroom that is occupied by a kid (or several kids)? This is a factor that will have to be taken into account as you organize the process, not only with regards to the room’s decor but also for other factors such as the layout and the safety of the room.

To this end, it is important to create a space where the kids can evolve without risking injury. You will have to choose the furniture, products and materials with this in mind.

We are thinking of:  

  • Doors and windows 

  • The type of floor  

  • The size of the furniture

The question of maintenance must also be taken into account, as kids often create more dirt. For example, it is best to avoid floors that are covered in carpeting, as they are quite hard to clean when messes happen. With regards to the wall covering material, as a kid, who hasn’t turned their bedroom walls into a makeshift art gallery wall?

This can be funny in the moment, but a lot less amusing when you try to remove traces from a surface that is not easy to clean! If you think that your kid will tend to get the walls dirty, opt for a type of paint that is easy to clean.

Boite à outils renovations_renovation toolbox

THE BASIC TOOLBOX FOR A BEDROOM RENOVATION PROJECT

Regardless of whether you have decided to hire a contractor or to do certain things on your own, you should have access to some basic tools to be able to make repairs later and/or to contribute to the project as such:

  • A drill;
  • Pliers;
  • Oscillating saw;
  • A multi-headed screwdriver;
  • A hammer with short handle;
  • An adjustable wrench;
  • A siphon;
  • A box of finishing nails;
  • A tape measure.

WHAT SHOULD YOU DO WHILE THE WORK IS BEING CARRIED OUT?  

Here are the questions to ask yourself when you are renovating a bedroom and you may have to think of a temporary solution before you can use the room.  

  • Will I stay here while the work is happening?  

  • Could I install a temporary bedroom in another space (living room, basement, office?)  

  • How much time will the renovations last (if all goes well) 

  • Do I have any options if the project ends up lasting longer than planned?  

Check out this article for a better of the various steps of a renovation project: From the ground up: stages of a renovation project

BEDROOM RENOVATION PROJECT CHECKLIST

Download the checklist + Download the checklist that has already been filled out (for examples)

Bathroom renovation project checklist

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