Small Bathroom Remodeling – What You Need to Know and Expect

Of All Remodeling Projects Around the Home, Making Small Bathrooms Look Better is Always a Popular Choice!

Projecting the cost of a small bathroom remodel will typically depend on who’s actually doing the work and the cost of all materials you plan to incorporate. You probably want to remodel your bathroom without draining your bank account, which can easily happen on many home renovating projects. The following information from Complete Remodeling offers a basic guideline concerning the expenses, materials, and what you should expect in general during a remodeling project like this. In the end, you may decide to cut a few corners on things like countertops or various grades of tile in order to save money.

Today, the average bathroom renovation is around $16,000 – higher or lower depending on where you live. Generally, it’s more expensive to remodel in the Northeast and out West, and lower in the South. Also, keep in mind you’ll be able to recoup a large part of your investment in resale value and increased equity.

Typical Mid-range Bathroom Remodel

  • $3,500 – $7,000

The definition of the average mid-range bathroom remodel includes installing vinyl sheet flooring, an integrated solid surface sink and vanity, recessed medicine cabinet, vinyl wallpaper/paint, and a new toilet and tub with either tile or a fiberglass enclosure.

Upscale Bathroom Remodel

$7,500 – $16,000

An upscale bathroom remodel may include restructuring the space by knocking down walls and expanding square footage into existing space, replacing fixtures with top-of-the-line models, adding a window/skylight, installing a 4×6 ft. high-end tiled shower with a wall, added linen closet, tile floor, new lighting, exhaust fan, a bidet, vanity with stone countertops and double sinks, or any other top quality amenities.

No matter where you live, you can easily and quickly spend $15,000 on a bathroom remodel. If you don’t have that kind of money, remodeling is all about compromise and sticking to the budget. Make a list of what your “must haves” are and what you can live without.

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Demolition and Construction

Depending on how far you plan to take your remodel, you may decide to do all the work yourself (DIY) or hire a general contractor instead. If you are doing the work yourself, be sure you know what you are doing; this includes obtaining permits and overseeing every aspect of the job. When hiring a general contractor it’s important to check references, get bids, and check the contractor’s previous work. Some people choose to do the demolition themselves, and then turn it over to a contractor. Also, compare the contractor’s costs of supplying your materials with the cost of purchasing them yourself. Although the contractor receives a significant discount, there still may be a huge mark up – determine which route is cheaper.

Labor Costs

If you’re hiring the majority of your labor, this is where a huge chunk of your budget will go. Keep this in mind as you develop your plan. Things like moving light fixtures and plumbing, installing windows, or laying tile will start to add up quickly. Any part of the process you can do yourself (properly) do it.

We recommend that you always speak to at least 3 contractors before you make a choice on one. This will afford you the ability to learn varying ideas and visions from the contractors, but also get an idea of the costs for labor ahead of time. Click here, and choose “full remodeling” to get free quotes from local companies.

Wall and Floor Tile

Tile itself is not only expensive, but the labor involved to install can demand a hefty price. It’s possible to incorporate tile into your plan and still save money by only installing it on the floor and/or the tub surround using a drop-in style shower stall. If you desire higher-end luxe products like iridescent glass mosaic tile, simply use it as an accent rather than an entire solid surface. If you’re really on a tight budget, consider using a simple wainscoting for a more traditional look and modernizing it by painting it a contemporary color.

Fixtures for Lighting and Vanities

Moving fixtures that require plumbing such as the sink, tub, or toilet will take a great deal of expense when remodeling. If possible, keeping the original floor plan in your bathroom will save a lot of money. The fixtures themselves can get very pricey as well. Pick and choose where your money will go. For instance, if you really want a luxurious glass vessel sink, maybe you can go with a standard toilet. If you want top-quality faucets installed in your double sink, consider a more basic tub. The more you compromise, the more money you will save.

Countertops and Vanities

Because the countertop space in a bathroom is substantially less than that of a kitchen, most people can afford to install a stone or solid surface countertop. Marble and granite are popular choices in the bath. Talk to your contractor about “leftover” pieces from another job to perhaps get an even deeper discount. A small single-sink vanity will not take much stone, but look like a million dollars. On the frugal side, a basic American Standard sink shouldn’t cost anymore than a few hundred dollars. Consider pairing a refinished cabinet with a granite remnant and you’ll have a great look for very little money.

The most important aspect of your bathroom remodel is to carefully consider every aspect of the process in terms of budget, materials, and labor – and stick to the plan. The last thing to address is the timeline for completing the project. A full small-scale bathroom remodel could take approximately 2 or 3 weeks working with a crew of 3 – 4 men. Obviously there are many factors that actually determine how long a remodel will take including how many people are on the job, materials on back order, and any other unforeseen problems. Over 80% of the time, a remodel, especially a total structural remodel, always takes longer than expected. It’s simply the nature of the beast.

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