Whether you’re re-doing a simple powder room or a master en-suite, the primary concern of your bathroom remodel should be the functionality. Check out this list of tips and tricks for getting more out of your storage, lighting, and plumbing options, which will make your new bathroom more resistant to the test of time.
Keep the layout
Your remodeling costs will be significantly lower if you can keep as many of your new plumbing fixtures, such as the toilet, the sink and the tub, as possible in the same locations as the old ones. If we’re talking about a second-floor bathroom, keeping each fixture in the old position can save you between $200 and $500 because you don’t need to run new supply and drain pipes upstairs. On the first floor, the savings aren’t significant as long as you have a crawlspace or basement access underneath. However, if your house sits on a solid concrete slab foundation, moving plumbing access points downstairs is at least as costly as moving them on the second floor.
Plan lighting ahead
Apart from plenty of natural light, you need to plan the kind of light you’d like early on, as it can often influence the other choices. Consider recessed light fixtures throughout the ceiling to keep the entire space well-lit, even one or two in your shower with a proper shower trim. A dimmer switch is a useful feature for adjusting the mood in the bathroom. Think about how you’re going to use the bathroom mirror and then decide if you want aesthetic or functional lighting. For applying makeup and shaving, make sure bright light fixtures are placed properly to help you see what you’re doing.
Inspect the plumbing
Leaving the old plumbing unchecked is the worst thing you can do, as starting over once everything is set in place is probably the last thing you need. A knocking sound behind the walls whenever you run a shower is one of the indicators of poor plumbing, as the installer hasn’t secured the pipes properly and the running water makes them rattle. If the taps are delivering inconsistent water pressure, you may need to run entirely new plumbing. You may also want to inspect your drains for damage and signs of clogging. By taking care of blocked drains before remodelling, you can prevent bigger issues such as sewage backup or wastewater flowing to the wrong place.
Consider the space
Remodelling a bathroom is a great opportunity to make it bigger by making adjustments that increase your storage and leave more free space. If you can recess your medicine cabinets a few inches, it’s a great way to give you more real estate over the shallow vanity, while the additional framing isn’t going to cost you much. Also, a vanity with drawers is more space-effective than one with doors. Apart from being easier to access and organize, they can be tailored around the plumbing and made large as well, to accommodate bigger items. The third tip for saving space is replacing the toilet with a wall-hung model. The way these toilets drain and the tank hidden behind the wall gives you more floor space and a neater look.
Porcelain before stone
While it’s only too easy to fall in love with all sorts of natural stone like granite or travertine, going with porcelain tiles saves you from $500 to $1,500 for an average bathroom, labour and material included. Nowadays, you can find plenty of stone-look porcelain option, with as much variety and colour as the real thing. On the bonus side, you don’t need all the maintenance hassle that comes with sealing and protecting the stone tile.
Not only does it increase usability and style of your home, but a bathroom remodelling project also helps increase the property value when the time comes to sell. However, since the bathroom includes complex systems such as electrical and plumbing, any renovation before thoroughly checking these can prove a problem down the line.