The hardest part of a bathroom renovation isn’t the work that goes into construction or the search for the perfect contractor — it’s the planning. There are so many opportunities to go over budget or past your deadline. Worst of all, without careful consideration, you may end up with a less-than-perfect finished project. To help you get the newly remodeled bathroom you’ve been dreaming about, here are some of the most important factors to consider when planning for your project:
How much will the renovation cost?
The No. 1 consideration for any renovation — particularly a pricey room like a bathroom — is the cost. HomeAdvisor.com tells us that the national average cost to renovate a bathroom is $9,275. If you’re not careful, these costs can go much higher.
The trick to avoid sticker shock is to come up with a firm budget and make sure that both you and your contractor stick to it. Once you know how much you can spend, make a list of priorities. Do you want a tiled floor or an expensive vanity? Would you like to spend more money on storage options or would you prefer to completely update the room’s electrical fixtures? By outlining all of the things that are most and least important to you, you’ll be able to see where you can increase or decrease costs to make sure the project fits within your budget.
How long will it take?
People are often quite surprised at just how long bathroom remodels take. You could be looking at two months or more between the time that you hire your contractor and the completion of the project. The good news is that the majority of this time will be devoted to planning and procuring materials. However, you can expect the construction phase to take between two and three weeks for a complete, floor-to-ceiling remodel. During this time, you’ll need to have alternate plans in place for your family’s regular bathroom activities — especially if this is your home’s primary bathroom.
Form vs. function
It might surprise you to learn that lasting satisfaction with a remodeling project usually comes from the project’s practicality, not its overall beauty. That isn’t to say that you should disregard looks entirely, but it’s important to think about design choices in terms of both aesthetics and maintenance. Some people really love the look of natural stone floors, for instance. If you install them, however, you might find yourself liking them a little less each year as you deal with various maintenance hassles. For each item on your remodeling list, take issues like durability and maintenance needs into account before making a final decision.
When to follow trends and when to ignore them
As you’re planning a remodel, you’ll run across dozens of trends for the bathroom. Keep in mind that trends come and go rather quickly. If you’d like to keep up with the latest and greatest bathroom renovation trends, then make sure that you express those design choices in elements that are easy to change. A tile floor in the latest loud colors, for instance, might not be the best idea because the trend is likely to fade long before that floor wears out. Vanities, mirrors, medicine cabinets, light fixtures and other smaller items, on the other hand, are relatively easy to replace as trends change.
Take a look at your lighting
In so many homes, the bathrooms are dull, dim places lit only by a window during the day and an overhead fixture at night. Consider all of the ways that you can upgrade your bathroom’s lighting: waterproof lighting over the shower, recessed lighting over the toilet and vanity, lights around mirrors and so on. You’ll find that updated lighting not only makes your bathroom more useful, but it will also help the room seem larger and fresher.
Save water where you can
According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the average four-person family uses 400 gallons of water every day — 43.5 percent of which is used by the toilet and shower alone. Even if you’re doing a bare bones remodel, still consider replacing the toilet, showerhead and sink faucet. These three items won’t add much money to the cost of your project, but they can cut water usage dramatically. New toilets, for instance, are required to use only 1.6 gallons of water per flush, whereas older toilets use up to 7 gallons per flush. EPA-approved showerheads save 2,900 gallons per showerhead on average.
Take each of these items into consideration when planning your new bathroom, and you’ll remove a lot of the uncertainty that most homeowners feel when they tackle major renovation projects!
Erica Garland is the Content Marketing Manager at Modern Bathroom and has 15 years of experience in the bathroom renovation industry. Modern Bathroom sells a variety of different products you would need for any bathroom renovation project. With such a large selection of vanities, faucets, sinks, toilets, and showers, Modern Bathroom is sure to have the perfect piece to give your bathroom an updated look