Welcome to the next installment in our Remodeling 101 Series: Master Bathrooms!
Fact: We spend a lot of time in the bathroom. According to a Skinbliss study, women spend 136 days in the bathroom applying make-up, taking a shower and getting dressed (men spend nearly a third of that time – 46 days – in the bathroom).
Despite the fact that we typically start and end each day here, the majority of homeowners wait a long time to remodel their bathrooms. That might be because it’s not a space most guests see when they visit.
Modern bathrooms incorporate more than just functional design and extra storage. Trends in bathrooms offer a ton of options. But the first question on most homeowners’ lips? How much will it cost?
It’s a good question, considering that the national averages leave room for a wide range of costs. According to Remodeling Magazine’s 2018 Cost vs. Value Report, the average cost to remodel a 5×7 bathroom is $19,134.
The good news is that you’ll likely recoup about 70% of the cost ($13,422) when you sell your home. Some bathroom remodeling tips that could come in handy when it’s time to make a change:
Tip #1: DIY to SAVE
Doing some of the work yourself could save the 20% that labor will cost if you hire a contractor. That said, there are still some jobs you’ll need to hire a professional to handle, such as plumbing and electrical work.
Tip #2: Leave well enough alone
Changing your master bathrooms layout will require a much larger budget. But, if you can get the design you want without moving your sink, toilet and shower/bath you stand to save a great deal of money. That’s not to say you can’t change the size or shape, but don’t reconfigure the layout.
Tip #3: Think long term
If you’re a mature adult, what would you need to update in your bathroom if you had knee surgery, for example, or had a hard time maneuvering? Grab bars and non-slip surfaces can make all the difference in your safety and comfort as you age.
Tip #4: Store it
Storage is typically a major reason for a remodel. Everyone wants more storage. Think about using shelving instead of cabinets, look up for storage space, adding wall cubbies or shelving that climbs up to the ceiling, and add baskets or drawers to vanities for organizing bottles, cans and necessities.
Tip #5: Perception matters
If you can’t increase the size of your master bathroom, you still may be able to increase the perception of space. A large floating vanity, a space saving walk-in shower, and a sliding or pocket door are all things that will make your bathroom appear larger.
Tip #6: Upcycle
An old dresser can make a beautiful bathroom vanity. Vintage-style fixtures, such as a soapstone sink or glass door knobs can become a fun focal point in a modern bathroom. Scour second-hand stores and antique shops for the real thing or purchase knock-offs of the original to get that vibe without paying the premium. Just remember to have a professional plumber handle the water hooks up under that new vanity to avoid water damage that can ruin furniture and flooring.
Tip #7: Get smart
Smart technologies are making life a little easier for homeowners and are good for the environment. In the master bathroom, consider adding a motion sensor faucet for the perfect marriage of style and functionality. Not only will you enjoy the convenience of hands-free use, you’ll also cut your water consumption back by a healthy margin, saving you money every month on your water bill. Now that’s smart!
Dual-flush toilets are another smart purchase that can save you money. If your bathroom predates the Energy Policy Act of 1992, it’s time for an upgrade. Dripping faucets can also impact your water bill and the environment. In fact, leaks account for about 1 trillion gallons of wasted water nationwide. And a dripping faucet or leak can cause damage where you can’t easily see it, which could end up causing bigger issues and potential costs down the road.
Tip #8: Splurge (a little)
Homeowners are turning their master suits into private spas, complete with soaking tubs, and other luxury amenities. You don’t have to create a home spa in order to enjoy a little luxury. A touch of luxe might be all you need to give your bathroom that little something extra. Underfloor heating, a towel warmer or a dimmer on your bathroom lights can serve to help you relax and unwind. Keep in mind that if you’re adding a soaker tub or multi-head shower, you may need a larger capacity water heater.
Tip #9: Be aware of trends, but don’t overdo it
Trendy design articles are popular online, but while remodeling your master bathroom in the hottest style might look great now, it will quickly become outdated. A better, more cost-effective option is to incorporate an element or two from trending designs. For example, if you love the natural, organic trend you might choose flooring with an aged wood or weathered tile look. If vintage design inspires you, you could choose glass or brass fixtures for a touch of whimsy without going overboard. If you like a dark, rich look, use paint to change up the wall color or add a dark frame around the bathroom mirror for an instant face lift.
For more tips, tricks, and insider-info on master bathroom remodeling, visit our website. Check out the other articles in our Remodeling 101 Series: Home Exteriors and Basements. To speak with a plumbing professional about your remodeling project or request a bid, contact us today. With over 30 years of experience serving the St. Louis community, we’re the plumbing experts you can trust to help you achieve the perfect master bathroom remodel!
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