One of the most popular remodeling projects for homeowners is the bathroom. New homes often have builder-grade bathrooms to cut building costs. They look great when walking through the house, but when a family moves in and is actually using these bathrooms, they fall short of the family’s needs. Families that purchase existing new homes and older homes are getting someone else’s idea of what a bathroom needs to be. The homeowner dreams of having a better-designed bathroom to their tastes and needs. When they are ready, they either hire a contractor or attempt to remodel the bathroom themselves.
Important Parts of a Well-Functioning Bathroom
It is important to include all the important elements in a bathroom when remodeling. They include unique bathroom vanities with tops, ventilation, a bathtub or shower, a water-saving toilet, heating, functioning mirrors, towel racks or hooks, waterproof flooring, good lighting, medicine cabinets, and additional storage. Consider materials such as ceramic tile or beadboard to protect the lower sections of the wall where water splashes occur. Think about the needs of the family members who will be using the bathroom. Make sure there are enough electrical outlets for hairdryers and other devices.
7 Steps For a Succesful Bathroom Remodel
1. Plan, Plan, Plan. To get a successful bathroom to remodel, homeowners need to plan before they start. A complete plan is needed including a to scale floor plan, shopping lists, and a work schedule. The initial part of planning is to decide on a realistic budget and then decide what the completed bathroom should contain and what it should look like. Working with a professional bathroom designer or a design/build firm specializing in bathrooms is a good idea. But a homeowner with experience can tackle the job themselves following a few guidelines. To save money and get help, homeowners can shop at a home center with designers on staff.
2. Choose Which Tasks Are DIY and Which ones To Hire Pros For
Once the bathroom plan is complete, decide which tasks are good DIY projects and which jobs require hiring professionals. Plumbing, Electrical, and major carpentry work require licensed professionals who will file for building permits and schedule building inspections. Flooring and countertop installation may require a professional for the best results. Scheduling is important to make the renovation go smoothly. The contractor’s work and DIY projects must be coordinated.
Working with a bathroom contractor or designer does not mean everything must be hired out. These professionals can help the homeowner decide which jobs they are skilled enough to do themselves. The key is to use a dependable contractor who has been carefully vetted.
3. Order the Bathroom Remodeling Materials
The best time to order all the materials needed for this project is before any work begins. That way, all the materials are available as the remodeling schedule calls for them. Products can be back-ordered or take weeks to arrive. If you want some items custom made, they will take even longer to arrive. Get the vanities, sinks, countertops, flooring, fixtures, hardware toilet, bathtub, mirrors, light fixtures, and everything else that is in the plan before the bathroom is all torn up. Then sort the items and store them in the garage or other secure place. This will help the bathroom remodel go faster and with fewer problems.
A bathroom remodeling project can involve a lot of demolition and haul away of refuse. Advance planning is important. If a contractor is doing the work, they will arrange the removal. But, if the homeowner is doing at least part of the work themselves, they will need to hire a refuse company to provide dumpsters and removal services. Fixtures and cabinetry that will be reused must be taken away to be stored safely. The walls contain plumbing and electrical wires that must be protected. The room should be gutted as much as required before the remodeling is started.
5. Electrical and Plumbing
While the bathroom walls are open and accessible, the wiring and plumbing contractors should do their work and have it inspected by the local building department. If major fixtures such as sinks and toilets are being moved, the plumbing lines must move with them. The same is true of electrical wiring for light fixtures, heating, ventilation, and so on.
6. Walls and Floors
Next, the outer walls are insulated, and all the walls will be sheetrocked and finished. The walls around tubs and showers will have a special cement board installed for waterproofing. Next, the walls will be finished, painted, or tiled. The floors will now be finished and leveled for installation of bathroom appropriate materials such as tile or vinyl flooring.
7. Installing the Fixtures, mirrors, lighting, doors, etc.
When the walls and floors are ready, the installation of toilets, vanities, countertops, tubs, and showers can take place. Light fixtures and mirrors are hung. The hooks and towel racks are installed. The plumber and electrician will make the final connections so everything works. All the finishing touches are installed now. Then there may be a final building inspection. This is the point for a final walkthrough with the contractor with a punch list. This is the homeowner’s chance to call out mistakes and things that need fixing before the job is paid for.
Additional Bathroom Remodeling Advice
Bathroom remodeling experts advise clients on ways to make their bathroom remodeling projects even better. They suggest things such as adding a plant for color, choose colors that make small bathrooms look larger. Whites or off-whites work well. Don’t skimp on bathroom lighting, but don’t make it harsh. Using a dimmer switch can give more options for lighting brightness.
Use more mirrors to make bathrooms appear larger and multiply the available lighting. Make sure the lower 40 to 48 inches of the wall are protected from water splashes. The bathroom is a good place to display art that is well protected under glass. Fluffy towels and rugs can add a sense of luxury. Make the bathroom a welcoming place for all the family members. Use high-quality finishes so they will look new longer and the bathroom will not need remodeling in the near future.