When planning a bathroom remodel, start with a budget which tells you what you can afford, i.e. one expensive feature like a tile floor? You might want several big ticket items but can't afford them all this year. If you're not sure which one is most important, taping pictures around your bathroom can help you see which feature you'll use/enjoy most. You can also defer a big ticket item to the following year.
Any remodeling project is a huge investment of money and time. Leave time to plan the project so you maximize it's value. Consider the value an appraiser will give your new bathroom, i.e. an $8,000 bathroom update in a home worth $160,000 makes sense but spending $25,000 doesn't make sense. Use Remodeling Magazine's annual “cost versus value” reports to learn the average cost for your bathroom remodel (see Remodeling Trends here at Home Tips 4 Women).
Why People Remodel Their Bathrooms
Consider what is driving your decision to remodel your bathroom. The most common reasons we see in my handyman business are:
- A homeowner has purchased a vanity they fell in love with … and the remodeling project begins.
- More people are tearing out unused bathtubs and using the space for larger showers.
- The children have moved out leaving empty nesters with unused bedroom space for the master bath they always dreamed of.
- Seniors staying in their homes longer, replace the bathtub with a shower for ease of access.
- Homeowners preparing for the future sale of their home, start to update bathrooms and the kitchen.
- … and homeowners who have just purchased a home but the bathroom wasn't what they wanted.
Common Bathroom Big Ticket Remodeling Features
Now that we know why homeowners are remodeling their bathrooms, what features are they putting into their new bathrooms.
- Jacuzzi tubs are out, and soaking tubs are the new trend.
- Larger, glass enclosed showers are replacing outdated bathtubs or being added to enlarged bathrooms.
- Steam baths are another new addition to larger bathrooms.
- Entertainment in the form of flat-screen TVs, streaming audio and refrigerators are being added as people spend more time in their bathrooms.
- Tile floors remain very popular and now radiant heat is another trendy feature.
- As bathrooms get larger, toilets are being given private rooms.
- Dual vanities remain popular and everyone likes added storage.
- The ambiance of bathrooms is being enhanced with more lighting (windows and fixtures) and decorative trim like crown molding.
One Homeowner's Bathroom
Looking at a typical homeowner who's just purchased a new home, here are the big ticket items picked to update this bathroom. The home was in good condition but twenty years old, so the bathrooms were dated. Our client wanted to tile floors and felt that wainscotting would add the right decorative touch in a subtle way. As is typical with most bathroom remodels, we replaced the vanity – counter top – sink/fixture plus other decorating touches.