Bathroom Remodel Tips & Guidance
When it comes to bathrooms, there’s a wide variation between an upscale, luxury remodel and a more economical, affordable upgrade. The changes you make to your bathroom will largely depend on your budget. According to Remodeling Magazine, the average bathroom remodel costs around $19,000 while an upscale renovation can run closer to $61,000. And the devil can be in the details. For example, as Angie’s List points out, you can purchase a frame-less shower door for as little as $300 or splurge on a luxury door for $3,000 or more. It all depends on how much you are willing to spend.
If you have a limitless budget for your remodeling project, that’s great. But you don’t need to spend a fortune to have the bathroom of your dreams. All you need is a little bit of ingenuity and research.
Figure out how much you can spend on a remodel based on the changes you want to make. If you need help figuring out exactly what your budget is, try using this helpful worksheet from the National Association of the Remodeling Industry.
It may be necessary to go with cosmetic changes if your budget comes in below $1,000. For instance, painting is always a good return on investment project, and putting in a new sink and fixtures can dress up a bathroom at minimal cost.
Read on to learn about some of the improvements that can save you money and increase your return on investment.
Grout & Caulk
If you’ve been in your home for many years, chances are the grout and caulk in your bathroom are looking a little grimy and moldy. It’s easy to overlook, but it’s also easy to fix. Cleaning grout and applying new caulking around the sink and bathtub or shower only costs a few dollars and it’ll give the whole room a clean new look. This is the kind of improvement project that will fit comfortably within any budget.
There’s a lot of money to be saved by buying used and less-expensive bathroom fixtures — such as sinks, toilets, and mirrors — on sites like eBay, Etsy, or Craigslist. Consider doing something a little offbeat by installing stressed, rehabilitated wood and multi-colored pieces of glass, rather than the usual Formica sink and countertop material. If storage space is an issue, consider hanging a towel cabinet on the wall — a convenience that makes it easy to get to the things you need in the bathroom.
Tile is one of the most expensive decorative materials, but you can dress up a bathroom and save money with a minimal and discriminating use of tile. Try incorporating it at intervals along the wall or in the flooring alongside less expensive pieces of tile. A strategic use of pricey material such as tile can add color and life without emptying your bank account. If you decide to go with a more intricate design, you may want to consider hiring a professional contractor, someone skilled at sizing and installing tile in small spaces.
Installing new window treatments is another cost-effective way to upgrade your bathroom. Roman shades in particular are attractive, functional, and inexpensive. They add a soft feel, absorb sound, and make it easier to control the amount of natural light you let in. And you can get them in a variety of styles and tones, and in material that’s resistant to mold and mildew—an important factor for any bathroom feature.
There’s a lot you can do to make your bathroom look brighter, cleaner, and newer without spending thousands of dollars. Paint, caulk, and fixtures may seem insignificant compared to a new bathtub, shower door, or expensive counter material, but can make a significant difference and add value without busting your budget.