When it comes to home improvement projects, there’s nothing like remodeling your bathroom. A central part of the home, the bathroom is a space that should be comfortable, relaxing and organized in a way that makes sense. Often referred to as “the business card of the house,” this room is frequented by family members and guests alike. As such, you want to make sure your bathroom is up-to-date with modern appliances, proper plumbing, safe electrical wiring, and of course, a fresh look that fits beautifully into the aesthetic of your home.
Bathroom remodeling, not unlike kitchen renovation, requires plenty of time and planning. Before taking on a project like this, it’s important to establish a budget and consider what exactly you want to change in your bathroom. You may be interested in a complete overhaul, or you might just want to update the basics. No matter what you’re planning to do, you need to have a clear plan of what will be removed, replaced and redesigned; most importantly, you should have a solid understanding of how much your bathroom remodel will cost and which aspects will take up most of the budget.
Several factors play into the overall cost of your small bathroom remodel ideas. You’ll need to decide early on how involved you want to be in the process (if at all) and whether you’ll need to hire a professional contractor for the job. This introduces labor cost to your budget, alongside things like demolition, new appliances and fixtures, floor replacement, painting and any changes you want to make to the floor plan. Essentially, the complexity of your bathroom renovations directly correlate with the cost — the more you want to change and customize, the more expensive the project will be.
On the topic of customizing, you’ll have many opportunities to spring for custom fixtures and furniture, which can drastically impact your budget. Custom pieces offer more control in getting exactly what you want for your bathroom but are significantly more expensive than store-bought pieces. Make sure you know beforehand how much you’re willing to pay for custom furnishings and dedicate part of the budget specifically for this aspect. If you’re ordering any custom pieces, you’ll need to consider where you want these pieces to be made.
The many facets of a bathroom remodel might seem overwhelming at first. Don’t panic! Now is the time to take a good look at your current bathroom setup and start making plans. Between replacing your old tub or shower, installing brand new floor tiles or just giving the space a fresh coat of paint, seeing your dream bathroom come to life is very possible if you have a proper budget and solid plan in place. The following is an in-depth guide to renovating your bathroom, from breaking down the budget to assessing what you really need to change.
Why You Should Remodel
There are countless reasons why you might want to remodel your bathroom; if you haven’t changed much about your home’s bathroom in recent years (or at all since moving in), now is the perfect opportunity for a change. Here are a few ways bathroom renovations of any size can improve your home:
- Giving the room a new look — remodeling is the perfect way to give your old bathroom a much-needed facelift. It’s easy to make cosmetic changes by painting, laying new flooring or replacing old light fixtures. To take things a step further, you can upgrade to a new bathroom mirror, shower curtains, bathmats, towel rings and any other accessories that add color and personality to the space. The addition of brand-new, clean appliances and fixtures seal can immediately make any bathroom look entirely different!
Installing brand new furnishings — along with changing the look of the room, new fixtures, appliances and furniture can bring obsolete bathrooms up to date with the latest in comfort and technology. In terms of old showerheads, toilets and faucets, upgrading to newer models helps reduce the presence of mold and bacteria that grow and spread over time. If there’s any furniture in your bathroom (like vanities or side tables) that are cracked, broken or suffering from weak spots and water damage, it’s a good idea to replace or at least remove them during a bathroom remodel as well.
- Cleaning up and preventing damage — this is a great time to have your bathroom’s walls, plumbing and electrical wiring assessed by a professional for damage. It’s much easier to have the bathroom inspected when large fixtures are already being moved, and the inspector can let you know if anything needs to be repaired or replaced. This is crucial for keeping your bathroom not only comfortable but safe for everyone to use.
- Increasing property value — it’s no secret that updating your home can increase the value of your property, and this is especially true for the bathroom. Along with a kitchen remodel, bathroom renovations can massively increase the resale value if you ever choose to sell your home — after all, buyers are usually willing to pay more for a house with features like brand-new floors and appliances.
- Customizing your space — this is yourhome, and it should be custom-tailored to fit your family’s needs. If you need any special equipment or features to accommodate someone, you can incorporate them into your remodeling plan. Whether you want handrails in the shower, a walk-in bathtub or wheelchair-accessible fixtures, this is your opportunity to build them. Of course, customization extends even further than this; you can fully customize the layout of the room by adding or removing walls, moving fixtures or installing additional features like “his and hers” sinks.
Ultimately, there are a lot of ways your home can benefit from remodeling your bathroom. You have the opportunity to take one of the most important spaces in the house and craft it into something entirely new; no matter how intricate or simple your vision is, you can bring it to life and make the room feel completely different. Not only this, but your options for customization are virtually endless. If you’re serious about renovating, take some time to examine every aspect of the area. Figure out what you like, what doesn’t work and get your bathroom remodeling ideas in order. The room should be comfortable, pleasant and efficient.
Breaking Down the Budget
Once you’ve got a clear idea of how you want your home remodeling project to look in the end, it’s time to start establishing a budget. Ultimately, your budget will come down to three major categories: labor, materials and demolition costs. There are technically other categories for specific things like custom fixtures and construction permits, but these may not apply to your renovation plan.
There are a number of factors that can affect your final bathroom or kitchen remodeling cost. First and foremost, the size of your bathroom plays a major role — the larger the room, the more costly it will be to renovate. If you’re changing the layout of the room at all, this may contribute a significant increase to the final cost, depending on what you’re doing. The quality of the materials you choose will determine how much you’ll spend on things like new fixtures, furniture, countertops and flooring. Some appliances, like luxury showers or whirlpool tubs, are much more expensive than traditional tub-and-shower combinations.
The state of your local real estate market can cause the price of labor to change, so your location may also impact the budget by up to 20%. In general, areas with higher property values tend to cost more in terms of renovation. Fortunately, materials and appliances tend to cost the same from most manufacturers across the board, so you shouldn’t need to worry about price fluctuation for what you’re actually furnishing the room with.
Overall, the following is an idea of what your budget will most likely look like. Bear in mind that not all bathroom renovations are the same; you may not have to account for some of the items on this list, or you may be changing things that don’t appear on this list. This is meant to give you a general idea of how the budget will be allocated between everything you’re renovating.
- Labor: 40-60%
- New vanity: 10-30%
- Showers and tubs: 5-25%
- New fixtures (sinks and toilets): 10-20%
- Plumbing and electrical work: 12-16%
- Flooring: 10-15%
- Doorway and window adjustments: 8-10%
- New countertops: 5-10%
- Lighting: 5-7%
- Painting: 5-6%
For any large or small bathroom remodel, labor tends to cost the most. The price of labor may vary greatly depending on where you live and what kind of work you need to have done; obviously, more complex jobs will be more expensive.
Coming in behind labor are larger fixtures and furniture like new vanities, tubs, showers, sinks and toilets. You have a lot of control in this aspect of the budget, as the quality and size of the furnishings you choose determine how costly they will be. Remember: custom pieces will always cost more than store-bought, but both options come with their own benefits and drawbacks.
If you want or need something specific out of your fixtures (like a separate tub and shower or specialized bidet, for example), it may be in your best interest to spring for something more high-end if you can. If you’re just looking for something new to replace your old furnishings, there is absolutely nothing wrong with pre-made options.
Following behind fixtures are some of the more nitty-gritty details of the job, such as plumbing, electrical and re-flooring. The cost for each category largely depends on how long the job will take and what it requires. The less your contractors need to rewire or change your home’s internal pipe systems, the better the budget will look in the end.
Changing your doorways, windows and countertops come in second-to-last place. The jobs can get costly if you’re looking for a complex final product but can be cost-effective when you plan well for them.
Finally, things light painting and installing new lights are among the least expensive parts of the budget. These are simple changes that can be carried out relatively quickly, and the materials tend to cost less than any others in the project. If you want an immediate change that everyone in the house will notice right away, a fresh coat of paint and new lights are a great place to start.
Obtaining Permits: $300-$1,800
Before you start any kitchen, bathroom or basement remodeling project, it’s important that you have all necessary permits and legal forms to do so. For purely cosmetic changes that won’t affect the interior of the house, you don’t need any special permit and can get started right away. However, any changes that will have a major effect on your home’s plumbing or electrical systems will require you to get a permit. This also applies to some cosmetic changes that will impact the appearance of your home’s exterior, especially in populous neighborhoods. Some examples include:
- Installing new windows
- Installing new plumbing lines when moving a tub or sink
- Building or removing a new shower or dividing wall
- Adding new electrical outlets to the room
- Changing the roofline of the room (adding skylights, for example)
All of these changes impact your home’s inner workings or outward appearance enough that you’ll need legal permission to get them done. Doing so ensures that you’re carrying out the job safely and within the confines of your property. However, not everything you do in your bathroom project will require you to get a permit; for example:
- Replacing an existing toilet
- Adding or replacing countertops
- Replacing an existing sink
- Redoing your bathroom floor
- Replacing existing light fixtures or electrical outlets
Since these changes only affect the appearance of your bathroom inside the house and don’t require the addition of new plumbing or electrical features, you shouldn’t need a permit to do them. However, be sure to check with your city’s municipal office to find out what permits you’ll need before starting.
Building and construction permit costs change from place to place, so ask your local municipal representative to find out how much permits cost in your city. Some building permits will run as low as a few hundred dollars, while they may cost well over $1,000 in some areas. If you’re hiring a general contractor for your remodel, good news: most contractors will obtain any necessary permits before starting your project and will even include it in the final price, so you shouldn’t have to worry about it. Speak with your contractor beforehand and ask if there are any legal permissions you will need before starting the remodel.
This is usually the most expensive portion of any renovation project, accounting for up to half of the entire budget — this is because remodeling contractors are usually hired for the job, and many charge anywhere between $50 and $75 per hour for their services. In Denver, the average hourly wage for a general contractor is reported at around $40/hour, with the most expensive contractors charging upwards of $52 and the least expensive coming in at around $31/hour.
If you’re planning on making big changes to your bathroom space, you’ll likely need to hire a plumber, which can cost upwards of $45-$100 an hour. The final cost of hiring a plumber can account for $1,000-$2,000 of the total budget depending on what you need. For rewiring or installing new electronic appliances, it’s important to budget for an electrician as well. Generally speaking, electricians charge significantly less than a plumber, around $30-$50 per hour.
Some projects may also call for an interior designer — this is strictly for updating the cosmetic aspects of the bathroom, which would be done well after your plumber and general contractor have finished remodeling. Interior designers typically charge anywhere between $50-$200 per hour, so the total cost of hiring a designer may change depending on how you want the space to look.
Since labor is usually calculated by hourly cost, the cost of labor for your project can change based on how long it takes to get everything done. For example, labor for a project that calls for a contractor, plumber, electrician and designer could cost around $1,400 altogether if the renovation can be completed in a single day. If the same project took a week to finish, labor costs could increase to around $7,000.
If you can’t budget to hire a professional, you can reduce the cost of labor by doing some of the work yourself, though this isn’t recommended unless you fully know what you’re doing. DIY projects have become very popular in recent years, and homeowners everywhere are learning how to safely perform demolition, install fixtures and even build walls. These and the other less complicated aspects of renovation can be carried out for much less than a professional would charge, and there are countless resources available to teach you how to overhaul almost every area in your home.
Demolition Costs: $125-$250/Hour
For most renovation projects, demolition is the first order of business. Typically, you would start by removing any furnishings, fixtures or accessories that can be taken out of the room. From here, you may need to pry up your old floorboards, tiles or linoleum sheeting. If you plan to expand change the layout of your bathroom, you may need to forcibly break down certain walls.
Overall, starting costs for demolition are around $125 an hour minimum if you’re bringing in an expert to get the job done; more seasoned veterans in the business can charge as much as $2,000 for their services. A project that requires a team to finish will cost more — if you’re not afraid to get your hands dirty, you may be able to assist your contractor with certain parts of the project and eliminate some (if not all) of the need for additional workers. The more you can help during the renovation, the more you can save in the long run. If you’re hiring a contractor, speak with them beforehand to learn how to be more involved in the process and how this could reduce your final cost.
If you understand how to tear down walls that need replacing, remove your old fixtures or add new flooring, doing so can easily save hundreds of dollars. Some jobs (such as painting or putting up wallpaper) are easy enough to perform on your own, further increasing your funds for other aspects of the remodel.
However, it’s important to know that making a mistake during demolition can quickly lead to expensive damage. A single mistake could lead to broken pipes, dangerous faulty wiring or even taking out a load-bearing wall; the cost to repair or replace features like these can potentially surpass the cost of hiring an expert. If you are not completely confident in your ability to perform demolition on your own, it’s wise to hire a specialist or consult with a professional to learn how to get the job done properly.
Unless you have some background in plumbing or electrical work, it’s not recommended to alter the wiring or pipe system on your own. These are specialized fields that need to be handled by an experienced worker with the right tools, and any errors could result in physical damage to yourself and your home. Before you start searching for “bathroom remodelers near me,” consider having an inspector assess the building for efficiency and damage readings first. You may find that no changes need to be made in order to complete the renovation!
Changing the Layout: $1,000-$15,000 Total
The cost of altering your bathroom’s floor plan can change dramatically depending on how drastic of a difference you’re looking for. Simply expanding the room can cost several thousand dollars alone, and typically requires the help of a contractor, plumber and electrician. This is because you’ll be making several changes to the interior workings of the bathroom as well as cosmetic details.
Among the things that may need to be done are:
- Architectural work — Expanding your bathroom means taking down walls, and this isn’t something that can be done on a whim. You need an expert who can identify load-bearing and non-load bearing walls, safely break down the correct walls and dispose of any waste. You may need to add new structural supports after you’ve taken out certain walls, which is another job that should always be done by a professional.
Drywall installation — Once you’ve taken out a wall, you’ll have exposed framework that needs to be covered and finished. You can put up the drywall yourself if you know how, but it’s always best to get a professional on the job. There may be important procedures specifically for your home that you aren’t aware of, and a professional contractor will be fully up-to-date on the most recent building and safety codes for your area.
- Plumbing installation — There are internal pipes behind many of the walls in your home, especially the bathroom. Once you’ve taken down a wall, there’s a good chance you’ll need a plumber to move or install new pipes to accommodate the change in layout. In some cases, you may have pipes that need to be removed or completely rerouted.
- Framing — Changing the layout anywhere in your home makes a big impact on the building’s stability. If you’re making big enough changes, you should bring in a professional to frame new walls or support beams; this is the best way to guarantee the final product will be beautiful and
- Electrical rerouting — Much like pipes, there are electrical pathways and wiring inside most of the walls in your home. It’s essential that you have a professional come in to handle any rewiring that might need to be done; this task poses a serious risk of electric shock without proper knowledge and safety equipment, and any mistakes you make on your own could result in major power problems in the future.
You may not need to have all of these things done, but it’s good to be able to account for them if the need arises during the project. Some last-minute costs may appear — if you’re trying to install a shower or tub on a wall that can’t support it, for example, you may need to rearrange the room in order to place it elsewhere. Do your best to learn what walls in your bathroom are load-bearing, where you can afford to make changes and where you can’t. It’s almost always less expensive and safer to put new appliances in where old ones were installed, as the plumbing and electrical setups have already been taken care of.
What’s important to remember here is that while room expansion and layout changes can be very costly, they don’t apply to every renovation project. If your bathroom or kitchen remodeling ideas don’t involve any layout changes, this is a cost that you can eliminate from your budget.
Plumbing and Electrical: $100-$1,000+
For any small bathroom renovation project, plumbing and electrical work are a big deal. These facets deal with the innermost systems in your home; they’re difficult to handle and can be very dangerous and pose serious risks to your home’s structural integrity if not done correctly. While there are many aspects of a bathroom remodel you can take care of on your own, this is not one of them. Unless you have proper training and experience in either field, you should not attempt to alter any wiring or pipes in your home.
The total cost for electrical and plumbing work varies from home to home; the changes you’re making to the bathroom will also make an impact on the final bill. If you’re not installing any new fixtures that require plumbing or wiring, the cost should be much lower. However, adding new tubs, sinks, electrical outlets and other appliances will steadily increase your expenses.
Each facet of plumbing and electrical work comes with a unique price range:
- Sinks: $200-$500 —This depends largely on where the sink is installed and how complex of a pipe system your home uses.
- Toilets: $100-$500 —If you’re replacing an old toilet with a new one in the same location, the cost should be lower than moving the toilet to an entirely new spot.
- New plumbing fixtures: $150-$500 —If you’re adding any new toilets, sinks, showers or tubs to a previously unfurnished area, you’ll need to connect them to the rest of your home’s pipe system.
- Water heater replacement or installation: $800-$1,500 —If you want hot water in your bathroom, you need a water heater that is in good repair. Maintenance for a water heater is much less expensive than a replacement, so try to have yours well-kept and regularly inspected to avoid unnecessary expenses.
Lights: $150-$800 — The cost to install new lights depends on where they’re going, whether or not your electrical system needs to be rewired to accommodate them and how complex the lighting system is.
- New outlets: $100-$300 — This is entirely a matter of adding new wiring to the existing system, so the cost may change depending on how difficult it is to change the wiring in your designated area. Replacing old outlets with new ones in the same spot is much cheaper than the former.
On top of the initial cost, your expenses for electrical and plumbing will increase if problems arise during the project. Have your bathroom inspected by a professional beforehand for any issues or snags, and try to have them addressed before starting the renovation. The easier it is for your plumber or electrician to work uninterrupted, the smoother and more cost-effective the process will be.
Remember: The cost of services and labor change not just based on location but also on the provider you’re going through. In between searching for bathroom remodel pictures, don’t be afraid to shop around and compare the prices of the professionals in your area to get a better idea of how much each contractor charges. Some businesses may offer specialized services that you don’t need but would essentially be paying for anyway; others may be much cheaper than competitors but not offer the services you do need for your bathroom. Take some time prior to starting renovation to find the professionals who will best suit your needs.
However, understand that you may not be able to plan for every possible issue during the project — your best bet is to be prepared as well as you can, but don’t lose sleep over every possible worst-case scenario. As long as you currently keep up on maintenance with your home’s internal systems, your renovation should be perfectly fine.
Replacing Your Fixtures: $500-$22,000
Right behind labor costs, installing new fixtures is another facet of the remodel that can use up a lot of your budget — this depends on the quality of fixtures you purchase and whether or not you order anything custom.
If you’re sticking with economy options straight off the shelf, your expenses will typically hang around the lower end of the spectrum. You can typically find toilets and sinks for as little as $200 apiece; new tubs or bathroom vanities will usually cost more, but most options come in under $1,000. Altogether, you should be able to replace most or all of your old fixtures for less than $2,000.
For any mid-grade fixtures, both the cost and quality of your product will see an impressive increase. Expect any vanity, tub or shower remodel to start around $1,200, with smaller fixtures like sinks and toilets coming in around $400 each. To overhaul your bathroom with fixtures at this level, the total cost will likely hover between $1,500 and $3,000. If the budget allows for it, this is an excellent middle ground for your new bathroom — your final cost will be inherently higher than the economy standard, but what you’re paying for is an increase in quality and durability.
For a luxury bathroom remodel, high-grade and custom fixtures are often the norm. If you’re not ordering custom-built pieces, you’re certainly paying for the best of the best; you may be looking at $5,000 for sinks and toilets and up to $6,000 a piece for a new shower and vanity. If you’re equipping a large bathroom with features like his-and-hers sinks or a separate tub and shower, your final cost can easily peak beyond $20,000.
Budgeting for new fixtures is only half of the equation here. Once you’ve purchased your new furnishings, you’ll need to account for the cost of installation as well. Smaller economy fixtures often cost less than $200 to install, while larger ones typically stay below the $2,000 mark. Most mid-grade fixtures start around at least $1,000, with larger pieces costing between $3,000 and $7,000 for installation. Of course, custom fixtures are the most costly to install; it’s common for small fixtures to cost around $3,000 for installation, while your expenses may breach $8,000.
It’s important to note that you do have the option of mixing and matching the type of fixtures you purchase. For example, if you want to spring for a custom shower but don’t necessarily need the most high-end sink for your bathroom, saving on an economy sink opens up your budget for a higher-quality shower. This also works the other way around — if you want a nicer vanity but can’t afford a fully custom one right now, you can opt for a more mid-grade model instead.
Don’t forget: You have the option of upgrading your fixtures later if the need arises. If you would rather wait and budget for your dream bathtub, you can always order and have it installed after the renovation is done. At this point, some minor floor demo or construction may need to be done, but the installation should be simple enough to do without completely disheveling your newly finished bathroom.
Updating Cabinets, Counters and Flooring: $1,000-$7,000
Once you’ve gone through demolition, changed the floorplan and replaced any fixtures or internal systems necessary, you’ll probably want to shift your focus on the more cosmetic aspects of your remodel. Replacing old countertops, cabinets and flooring are great for adding new life to your space; the cost to update each of these features can change significantly depending on what you have done, so make sure you know exactly what you want the final product to look like.
Cabinetry typically ranges anywhere from $250-$3,000 or more, and this can vary greatly depending on if you stick with pre-made cabinets or spring for something custom. If possible, consider matching your bathroom cabinets with your kitchen cabinets to save even more in the long run. In a case where you’re unable to budget for a full cabinet replacement right away, consider refinishing your old cabinets instead — it’s much more affordable than purchasing new units, and most contractors can easily match old cabinetry with new. This is another task that you may be able to do yourself with the right tools and a bit of research, especially if you’re just staining or painting the old cabinetry. The same goes for a kitchen remodel as well. A fresh coat of color and some new knobs are a quick and easy way to freshen up old furnishings like these!
Replacing old countertops costs around $300 at the low end of the spectrum and can breach $3,800, but the cost typically hangs around $1,500. Again, this comes back to the quality of countertops you’re purchasing, how much custom work you want done (if any at all), and whether you opt for a pre-made vanity instead. If you’re going with something pre-built, the price will change with the quality you select. You have less expensive models that will save money but may not be as durable or outwardly attractive; there are also plenty of luxury vanities that are as beautiful and sturdy as they are expensive. Mid-grade vanities usually offer a solid balance of quality and affordability, though your options may be limited with certain sellers.
For flooring, your price tag will typically settle between $1.45 and $7 per square foot, which brings your total in the realm of $490 to over $600 for the entire bathroom. A major factor in having your floor redone is labor, which usually costs around $30 per hour. Essentially, your contractor will be removing your old flooring, repairing any underlying damage and laying new material; if you have the knowledge, this is an area that you can easily save money in the budget. There are still risks if you’re undertaking this task without much experience, but laying a new floor is fairly forgiving as far as structure goes — you’re more likely to cause a cosmetic mistake than cause any integral harm.
Overall, this area of the budget can be significantly improved if you’re willing to carry out some DIY projects. What you save in funds will be spent on your own personal time, so make sure you have extra help for the job if you need it. If you’re ever unsure if you’re laying new flooring or finishing new countertops or cabinets correctly, don’t be afraid to speak to your general contractor or any other professionals involved in the project. Their input can be invaluable in helping you finish the task.
Adding Handicap Accessible Features: $1,500-$9,000
You may need to incorporate handicap accessible features into your bathroom design ideas. If anyone in your family needs special accommodations in the bathroom, this is definitely something you’ll need to budget for. The total cost will change depending on what you need and how many features you need to add; in certain cases, you may not be able to make the necessary accommodations without changing the bathroom floor plan first.
Overall, most simple changes allow you to make your bathroom handicap accessible for around $1,500, although some projects may total out to less than $1,000. On the other end of the spectrum, adding multiple handicap features or making prominent changes can bring your final cost much closer to $9,000, and some of the most expensive projects can pass $20,000 after the fact. On average, most people spend around $4,000 on handicap accessible changes in a bathroom renovation.
There are multiple features you may want to consider incorporating into your final design, and every option is accompanied by its own benefits. Some of these fixtures include:
- Safety railings — For anyone who has a difficult time moving from place to place or is frequently at risk of falling in the bathroom, safety rails are an indispensable feature. You can install safety rails anywhere a person may need extra stability; this may include the shower, bathtub, next to the toilet and sink or on the walls.
- Widened doorways — If you’re trying to make the bathroom more wheelchair friendly, widening doorways is a great way to make getting in and out much easier. The price may vary depending on how large you want the opening to be, how many doorways you need worked on and where they are located.
- Lower appliances and fixtures — Lowering the height of your bathroom furnishings can make it much easier for people who are shorter, use a wheelchair or have a hard time reaching longer distances. If you’re sticking with pre-built pieces and fixtures, you may not have many options at your disposal. However, it should be fairly easy for you to choose the height of your furnishings when going through a custom builder.
- Walk-in bathtubs — If it’s difficult for you or a family member to safely enter the bathtub without slipping and falling, a walk-in tub may be ideal for your project. Walk-in bathtubs are much taller than standard models and use a hinged door for entry; this eliminates the need for anyone to step over the side of the tub to get in, making it much safer to use. Most walk-in tubs also have options for jet massagers to ease muscular pain, which is great for conditions like arthritis.
- Stair chairs — Stair chairs may not be necessary inside of the bathroom but can make the room more accessible for anyone with walking difficulties if it isn’t on the ground floor. Stair chairs are built into the wall and follow a track that is adjacent to the incline of the steps, and most models take less than a minute to reach another level in the building.
- Wheelchair ramps — If you need further accommodations for anyone using a wheelchair, consider installing wheelchair ramps in your bathroom. These can be used to get in and out of the shower or tub and can also be used in lieu of stairs. Generally speaking, aluminum ramps are weatherproof and less expensive but tend to be a bit wobbly. Wooden and concrete stairs tend to be more durable, but this comes at a significant cost increase for both.
When installing handicap-accessible features, you should plan ahead for the future — is there a loved one in your home that doesn’t need certain features right now but may develop the need later on? It might be wise to go ahead and make the bathroom accessible now. Are you sharing your home with relatives who need a shower ramp but won’t be staying with you forever? Consider purchasing a temporary ramp that can be moved instead of installing a permanent fixture. It’s important that you plan for the needs of everyone who may be frequently visiting your home; the easier it is to navigate the bathroom, the happier and more comfortable your loved ones will be.
Total Cost: $6,000-$15,000 on Average
Generally speaking, the average bathroom remodel cost sits just over $10,500. Most homeowners will fluctuate somewhere between $6,000 and $15,000 depending on the many factors going into the project, and the price may change throughout depending on how much of the work can be done by the homeowner and how long the remodel takes.
If you’re just looking to update the essentials for a fresh look and feel of small- to medium-sized bathrooms, you may be able to make it work on a budget of $3,000-$7,000; this typically includes new fixtures, new flooring, refinished cabinetry, a fresh coat of paint, new window and shower curtains and new lights. You may also be able to spring for new countertops, but this depends on what you have to spare in the budget once all is said and done.
For a more in-depth remodel or for renovations in a larger master bathroom, you’re most likely looking at a budget somewhere between $10,000 and $25,000; on average, a full luxury master bath remodel in Denver will cost $18,000 at least. This accounts for all of the above and at least some custom or luxury fixtures, expansion or layout changes, plumbing and electrical work, new countertops and any handicap accessible features you may need to install. As these projects tend to be more intricate and involved, this type of remodel often takes longer to complete, thus increasing the final cost.
In terms of averages across the board, you can break your bathroom remodeling budget down by the square foot:
- 15-square feet (3×5): $1,875
- 24-square feet (6×4): $3,100
- 36-square feet (6×6): $4,000
- 45-square feet (5×9): $5,625
- 80-square feet (8×10): $10,000
- 90-square feet (9×10): $11,200
As the size of the room increases, the overall average costs tend to increase by $1,000-$2,000 minimum. Your bathroom measurements may not be listed, but you should be able to get a general idea of the total average cost for a full renovation by the next closest size on the list.
Update vs. Full Remodel
If it’s not in the budget to have the bathroom fully remodeled right away, you have the option of simply updating the room. Changing the paint, putting up new wallpaper, laying inexpensive linoleum over your old floor and refinishing your cabinets can instantly change the aesthetic of the room.
To take things a step further, you can install new faucets on your old sink instead of buying a brand new one; an upgraded shower head can improve your current shower by leaps and bounds, and simply changing the handles or knobs on your vanity and cabinets can make them feel brand new. Even smaller changes like putting up artwork, updating your old shower curtain or putting up a new mirror can breathe new life into the room.
In cases where a full renovation is out of the question, you may want to update the bathroom for now and focus on remodeling later. A quick update gives the space a much-needed makeover, making it more appealing while you save up for serious changes in the future.
Best of all, bathroom updates almost never require the help of a hired professional — you should be able to do most of the work yourself, which can save hundreds if not thousands of dollars for your future renovation project! Before tackling a bathroom update yourself, try to read up on the ins and outs of what you’ll be doing first. While this is more forgiving than a remodel, you want to be able to get it done right the first time.
Be advised: If you’re having any house remodeling done to repair damage or replace broken appliances, it’s not a good idea to put it off. Before making any other major changes, make sure that the bathroom is in good repair, free of broken furnishings and doesn’t pose any threat of flooding or electrocution from faulty pipes and wiring. Safety should be number one in the home, so it’s important to have the bathroom up to code before you worry about changing the way it looks.
Other Ways To Save
If an update isn’t enough and you want to get started on smaller renovations, there are a few ways you can do so while still saving money in your budget:
- Perform any demolition you can on your own. Rip up your own flooring, take out your old toilet and sink and remove any old tiling with your own hands. Make sure you’re using proper safety equipment like protective goggles and gloves.
- Deep clean your old fixtures instead of replacing them. If they’re still working properly, take them out and give them a thorough cleaning with antibacterial household cleaners.
- Add your own tile and backsplash to the tub if you want a new look. It may take a bit of time and effort, but this is much cheaper than a full bathtub remodel. For added space, upgrade your old shower rod to a curved rod; this pairs beautifully with dual window-style shower curtains!
- Take preventative measures against internal damage. Regularly check up on your shower, tub, sink and toilet — make sure any caulk or sealant isn’t wearing out and giving way to water damage and mold behind your appliances. The better repair the room is in when you start, the less you’ll need to worry about surprise expenses during the renovation.
Overall, a lot of good can come from renovating your bathroom. It’s a great way to take one of the most frequently used spaces in your home and make it something more. Your bathroom renovation project is completely in your hands, so take the time to carefully plan for what you want. Don’t rush if you don’t need to; it’s always better to budget and save for your dream bathroom. With the right tools and mindset, you can bring your bathroom design ideas to life!