When it comes to home improvements and remodeling jobs, prioritizing what needs to get done comes before what you’d like to have done. A bathroom remodel can feel like the gray area in-between.
Maintaining the parts of a home that protect its structure is always going to be a homeowner’s concern. Roof, windows, siding—all of these improvements get first dibs on budget and consideration even when a new bathroom or kitchen is so much more fun.
However, you shouldn’t feel guilty about spending money on that bathroom remodel, because a crumbly old bath can damage your home too, costing you even more money in the long-run.
A slow leak coming from the shower or sink pipes behind the walls can cause a surprising amount of damage to the home. Not only can it cause mold and mildew, it can degrade the area around it, causing a potentially dangerous situation.
How a bathroom remodel can increase your home’s value
Out-of-date bathrooms lower a home’s resale value. Not many prospective buyers are happy to walk into a bathroom that hasn’t been touched since the 70s, let alone buy the house it sits in. Luckily, it’s not uncommon for a home to recoup close to 100% of the bathroom remodel cost when the home sells.
In fact, doing a bathroom remodel to add a half bath increases the value of your home by more than 10 percent. Additionally, adding a full bathroom doubles that return and results in a 20 percent increase in home value. So, getting rid of those chipped tiles and perma-grout stains isn’t for the sake of vanity at all. It’s making a smart investment into one of your largest investments—your home.
Keep the remodel style neutral
Just because it’s a practical use of money doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy your new bathroom. However, it’s also important to remember that if you do plan on selling your home at some point in the next several years, you’ll want to have the bathroom redone so that it has a neutral, mass appeal. You might have great taste, but it isn’t necessarily the same taste as everyone else.
Things to keep in mind during a bathroom remodel
How price is determined
Keeping the layout of the plumbing and fixtures the same will reduce the cost involved in remodeling your bathroom. Moving the location of pipes, drains, and wiring will require different logistics beyond what is involved with simply retiling and installing new fixtures.
A small bathroom will cost between $8,000 and $10,000 to remodel. This includes all new materials, such as tiling, new fixtures, new cabinets, and a new countertop. The price will rise if you commision custom fixtures, cabinets, and countertops rather than selecting bathroom materials that are available at hand in a store or online. Making a home accessible for those with special needs, as in for those in wheelchairs or living with other physical disabilities, will make the remodel job more costly as well.
The one thing you should never be stingy with or make a sacrifice on is the contractor you hire. You may be tempted to cut corners by hiring the cheapest bathroom remodeling contractor to save more money, but doing so usually only ends in frustration, regret, and wasted money. You get what you pay for when you hire a pro.
Shoddy work isn’t only a waste of materials, it also affects your actual home. Poorly installed toilets, sinks, and tubs can cause leaks that may go undetected for a long time, compromising and damaging the surrounding walls and flooring. Repairing the structure of your home will be expensive and something that could have been avoided had you hired a contractor who was skilled.
Because a bathroom remodel is a hard job that requires skill, and most often, the hiring of subcontractors who specialize in plumbing and electrical, it’s not surprising their fee is twice the price of materials. So, make sure you do your research first. Pick a bathroom remodeling company that has good reviews, is in good stand with the BBB, and is properly licensed and insured for your state.
When you do your budgeting, take the cost of your materials and double it — this is roughly how much you should expect to pay your contractor. It’s not a hard and fast rule, but it tends to be the case and a good place to start when planning your bathroom remodel.
DIY bathroom remodel: worth it or not?
If you are hoping to do this remodel as economically as possible, you should take inventory of what you want to be done and see if any of those tasks can be performed by you or friends and family. Figure out what your skill level allows you to do, like painting and simple tilling, and then DIY it. Although, if you are unsure that you can do any of the work yourself, you should probably hand it off to a pro from the start so you don’t waste money on the materials twice — once on the job you attempted and then on the do-over by the contractor.
Planning & budgeting your bathroom remodel
Always plan the remodel ahead of time, deciding on what’s a must and what’s a want. Decide if you want to add square footage to space, keep the layout as is, or move things around within the space. Figure out what you can spend, and be sure to leave wiggle room in your budget for SNAFUs and surprises. Because a remodel job without some type of problem is rare, make sure you can afford the unexpected so you don’t get left with an unfinished bathroom.
To give you an idea of how much materials cost al la carte, here are prices of the most common items that are replaced in a bathroom remodel.
- New Sink: $100
- New Toilet: $175
- New Tub: $450
- New Flooring Tile: $800
- New Countertop Tile and Mortar: $200
- New Vanity Cabinet: $200
- Plumbing Materials and Labor: $3,000
- Non-Plumbing Labor: Around $9,000
- Miscellaneous Building Materials and Supplies: $500
Finding the right pro for your bathroom remodel project
If you are ready to increase the value of your home with a bathroom remodel, connect with service.com for the best bathroom contractors in your area.
Our service professionals in the remodeling industry will help you plan and implement your remodel so you get the bathroom you’ve been dreaming about. Finding the right pro with us is your most important first step.