How to Budget for a Bathroom Renovation

A well-designed bathroom can add both comfort and value to your home. It’s also a room that demands careful planning to ensure it functions well for you and your family. Before contacting contractors, take some time to consider how you use your bathroom and what features you’d like to see. This will help you whittle down options to suit your needs, which can save both time and money.

Depending on how much you want to change, your remodeling budget will vary. It’s important to get estimates from multiple companies before making a final decision. This will give you an idea of the total cost and help you compare prices.

The most expensive part of a bathroom remodel is the installation of new surfaces, including flooring, tiling and countertops. Cabinets are another big expense, and there are many different materials to choose from. Laminate, tile and sealed wood are relatively affordable; quartz and marble cost more, but they’re prized for their durability and beauty.

Another factor that impacts remodeling costs is the plumbing work involved. Replacing a toilet, tub or shower can add up quickly. You’ll need to plan for a new drain and overflow, as well as rerouting of water lines to accommodate the change.

While you’re at it, you may want to consider upgrading your showerhead and faucets to energy-efficient models that will lower your utility bills. Another consideration is the amount of natural light in your bathroom, which can have a huge impact on its look and feel.

Unless you have plumbing and electrical experience, it’s usually best to hire professionals for any major work that requires drilling into walls or running new wires. Using a credit card with an introductory offer for interest-free or low-interest payments can help you pay for the work without dipping into your savings.

When you’re ready to hire a contractor, keep in mind that hourly rates will vary based on your geographic location and the demand for skilled workers in your area. It’s important to set your budget in advance so you don’t run into unexpected expenses. It’s also a good idea to solidify your plan with your contractor in writing to avoid costly surprises and redos.

A good way to spruce up your bathroom on a budget is by painting the walls and cabinets. Opt for semi-gloss paint that’s easy to wipe down and resistant to mold and mildew.

If you don’t need to rework your bathroom’s footprint, you can save thousands by refinishing the existing bathtub and shower instead of replacing it. You can also try adding an eye-catching element, such as a vaulted ceiling, to the room with minimal effort and expense.

Adding a handheld showerhead, lever-style sink faucets and a grab bar can make your bathroom safer for people of all abilities. It’s essential to install permanent safety features early in the project by securing them to blocking between wall studs and placing them 33 to 36 inches off the floor.