Bathroom Remodeling Guide: Tips & Tricks

by Kennadie McDermott
on 11 March 2021

iconic calacatta room

Iconic Calacatta

Bathroom remodeling is a common home project, but also a fairly big and involved one. According to one article on how to save on a bathroom remodel, the average cost of this kind of job can exceed $16,000. And that’s based on data from 2015 (meaning the number has likely ticked up at least a little bit).

Many homeowners will feel that that’s a reasonable price to pay for a fully revamped bathroom space — which can not only make a home more pleasant, but can also boost the home’s resale value. Nevertheless, if you’re thinking of investing that heavily in remodeling a bathroom, it’s all the more important to get the project just right. So with that in mind we want to offer a few tips and tricks for everything from paying for the remodel to choosing the right products.

Find Ways to Save

The aforementioned article that quoted the average price for a bathroom remodel also had some helpful advice for how to save on the project. For instance, it was recommended to compare products to find where cheaper alternatives are every bit as effective as more expensive pieces. It was also suggested that thorough knowledge of how contractors are paid can help you to structure a project to minimize costs. Perhaps most interesting was the idea that you should buy your own materials (even if you have to consult with the contractor to know what to buy), so that you aren’t paying workers for their time spent shopping. Essentially, the more thorough you can be in your planning, the more you’ll be able to save.

Find Ways to Pay

If you’re opting for a home remodel that will cost thousands of dollars, you may need to explore different ways to pay for up-front costs. The first option that will occur to many is to put the bulk of the cost on a credit card and pay it off as gradually as is allowed. However, it’s also worth exploring loan options. Bathroom remodeling is actually mentioned as one of the main ways home improvement loans can be used, meaning this sort of arrangement is quite common. Specifics vary depending on your lender, but it’s possible to obtain an unsecured loan (meaning one based on your credit rather than given in exchange for home equity), and have a favorable APR as well. This allows you to pay for the remodel up front, and make up the cost at your own pace.

Keep Up with the Trends

Moving past payment, one of the best tips to keep in mind for how to successfully remodel your bathroom is to keep up with the trends. Of course, you can do whatever you like with your home. But particularly if you’re concerned with resale value, it’s better to observe trends than to rely solely on personal taste. As an example, consider the matte tile trend that we’ve remarked on recently as a go-to for 2021. It’s a trend that’s come about for multiple reasons: tranquil feeling, modern design aesthetic, and even ease of cleaning. It is both fashionable and functional, and bound to remain that way for the foreseeable future. A trend like this is at least worth considering for a remodel that is both attractive and enduring.

Consider the Type of Bathroom

It may seem to be an obvious point, but different types of bathrooms should be handled differently when it comes to remodeling. A primary bathroom is one connected to the master bedroom, and is usually a full bathroom. A full bathroom is one with a toilet, sink, shower, and bath. And then there are three-quarter bathrooms (toilet, sink, and shower or bath); half bathrooms (toilet and sink); and quarter bathrooms (toilet or shower). Products and costs relating to the general room (wallpaper, plumbing, tile, lighting, etc.) may not vary much between types of bathrooms. However, larger purchases may be dictated by what type of room you’re remodeling. For instance, you might invest more for three-quarter bathroom shower head than for a quarter bathroom (or utility shower). You might have more to spend on a new toilet for a half bathroom than for a full bathroom in which you have other priorities. Keep these factors in mind from the beginning so as to strategize and budget appropriately.

Prioritize Products Accordingly

Lastly and most importantly, remember to prioritize products according to the decisions and considerations alluded to above. For instance, if you were to opt for the matte tile trend for a full bathroom, you’ll want to find the right tiles first, and choose matching furnishings and décor thereafter. Ceramic sinks can contrast nicely on a matte tile countertop; a natural material like stone for a tub or shower floor complements the atmosphere; and mirrors with minimalist borders help to allow the matte tile to shine. These choices surround a specific example. But the general idea is to choose products in a cohesive manner relating to the type style of bathroom you’re going for, rather than as independent purchases.

Follow these simple but important guidelines and you’ll be well on your way to a gorgeous bathroom remodel.

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Written by Ashley Brady