Bathrooms have changed a lot over the last couple of decades. A lot, a lot. A modern bathroom in a newly constructed home is more likely to resemble a luxurious spa, than a closet with a shower and a toilet, like so many built fifteen or twenty years ago. This makes it one of the most popular rooms to remodel, trailing behind only the kitchen. But how do you make your bathroom livable—or sellable—without going broke? Here are three money saving tips that might help!
1 – Leave Fixtures In Place
The single most expensive thing you can do during a bathroom remodel is to open up the walls and rearrange plumbing and electrical wiring. Doing so will easy double, maybe even triple the cost! So if it’s at all possible, leave anything that’s permanently wired (like over-vanity lights and exhaust fans), and anything that’s plumbed (like toilets, tubs, and showers) where they currently are.
That doesn’t mean you can’t upgrade, upsize, replace, or renew. It just means that the new stuff has to hook up to the same pipes and wiring as the old. This does restrict the design possibilities—but not as much as you might think.
2 – Seek Remnants and Leftovers for Small Accents
This works best if you’re hiring a contractor of course, but even if you’re not, it doesn’t hurt to ask around. Often times, when another homeowner remodels a bathroom or kitchen, they wind up with extra materials at the end of the job. That’s because many things, like ceramic tiles and laminate flooring sections, only come in boxes of certain quantities.
While you may not be able to redo your entire bathroom floor or wall with the leftovers from another project, a backsplash or an accent line of tile around the room at chair-rail or towel-rack height can add a lot of character for very little cost, possibly even for free!
3 – Incorporate More Vertical Storage to Open Up Floor Space
No, you don’t want to turn your bathroom into a cave, full of floor-to-ceiling storage … but one or two elements, like a raised counter and full-height storage area built into the bathroom vanity between the sinks, can provide a ton more storage in a much smaller footprint than the old vanity might have taken up. That freed-up floor space can be used to incorporate a larger bathtub, for example, or maybe a rimless walk-in shower.
At RTA Cabinet Store, our quality RTA cabinets are ideal for this kind of custom solution, at a fraction of the cost to have a carpenter custom-build something similar. We even have instructions for how to assemble one such arrangement, as shown here: