Renovating Your Bathroom on a Budget
Last modified: 2019/02/18 | Approximate reading time 4 mins
A bathroom remodelling project can help give new life while also making it a more appealing place to spend time. Unfortunately, the average cost of a fully-fledged bathroom renovation can climb as high as $13000, which can be considerably outside of many people’s budgets. However, thanks to some clever and careful planning, you can have a bathroom that feels like new without incurring sizeable expenses.
Normally, with any bathroom renovation that’s being undertaken, you would begin by setting aside your budget. Generally speaking, preparing a budget for your renovation will allow you to choose your materials very precisely. This way, you will have an idea of which fixtures you’ll want to install and if you can spend more on an individual fixture. With bathroom fixtures like sinks, toilets and lighting, you can do these after you’ve taken care of the major aspects.
Bathroom size is a big factor
As a general rule of thumb, the smaller the bathroom is, the less it will cost to renovate. This is a result of less square footage and the fact that fewer materials will be needed to spruce up the space. Furthermore, the greatest cost will stem from using a professional’s services for installation which is why it is always recommended to get various quotes.
A great idea before starting anything is to research the kind of look you want your bathroom to have, whether it’s a modern or traditional feel. Remember above all that while doing the work yourself will save you lots of money, it will take some elbow grease.
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Things to avoid when trying to renovate your bathroom on the cheap
Here is a brief list of things that will easily increase the cost of your renovation so you can avoid them completely.
- Expanding the square footage. This can make the budget skyrocket since the electrical wiring, floors and plumbing all need to be increased to compensate for the expansion. This will undoubtedly drive up the cost of materials and labour.
- Major fixtures. Replacing big components like the bathtub, countertops, and toilet will be costly since the materials themselves are not cheap and due to the fact that you will need to have the original fixtures torn out first. All of this will lead to higher labour and material costs which can be avoided.
- Plumbing and electrical problems. Having your plumbing and wiring inspected before a major renovation is a great idea as you will know before any ground has been broken whether your renovation will be a simple or complex one. Problems with your plumbing and wiring will be a priority and you will have to reevaluate the other aspects of your renovation accordingly.
Instead, consider some of these inexpensive bathroom fixes:
- As opposed to expanding the size of your bathroom perhaps you should think about shifting the room's layout. Small things like the moving or adding a clothing hamper or towel rack or other storage will help change the feel of your bathroom. Another great and affordable option is replacing your light bulbs with efficient LED bulbs. This will help you save on your electricity bill while introducing a beautiful white light that feels an awful lot like actual daylight. Consider buying new accessories like a mirror, linens or even plants to help liven up your new bathroom. Lastly, a great and affordable option is adding a new, fresh coat of paint on the walls which can open up the space and have it feel like a whole new room. Of course, you should make sure to use a paint optimized for the heat and moisture of a bathroom!
- Instead of tearing out old fixtures and having them replaced with new ones, try refinishing what is already there like the sink and cabinetry. Products like RustOleum’s Cabinet Transformations give you plenty of finishes to match your personal style while also being a very easy product to use with fantastic results. If your cabinets do need to be replaced, this can be done relatively inexpensively by using prefabricated stock cabinets which can be repainted as needed. Wonderful porcelain tiles that mimic the look of hardwood are a great inexpensive flooring option. You can also save significantly by buying the materials yourself instead of your contractor. Depending on how your budget is coming along, you may wish to opt for a bigger ticket item like a new toilet, sink or countertop. We recommend limiting this choice to one major fixture as costs build up easily and this is the best way to stay within your budget.
- Issues with your plumbing or wiring are far too great to put off so we suggest prioritizing that over other costly renovations. For big jobs like this, it is imperative to hire a professional as plumbing and wiring systems are very complicated and incorrect repairs can lead to further damage and costly repairs.
You may want to consider some out-of-the-box ideas, like using tile on the walls as a focal point behind the sink or tub. This is a great option as you have an almost endless selection of colours and materials. Making use of small accessories from around the house can add a nice touch; try taking a vase from the dining room, a nice dish to hold potpourri or even just some new liquid soap dispensers.
Even things like opting for a new shower curtain made of fabric rather than plastic, or a very stylish bamboo bathmat, can add to an elegant atmosphere. These finishing details won’t cost you very much at all and are all noticeable, adding a nice touch that guests will appreciate.
Always remember that large-scale jobs on plumbing or wiring require certain skills and by hiring a licensed professional contractor, you will have the peace of mind that the work is being done correctly and by an expert.
To see examples of bathroom renovation projects completed by RenoQuotes.com contractors, check out "10 examples of beautiful bathroom renovation projects".
Author: David Ben-Zaken
Looking for an idea of how much bathroom renovation projects can cost? Here is a video we prepared that presents different prices associated with this type of transformation :
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