In any given year, Americans remodel over 14 million bathrooms across the nation. That’s even higher than the number of kitchen remodeling projects undertaken each year.
There are several potential reasons why people remodel their bathrooms. Some common reasons include improved efficiency, additional storage, or as a pre-home sale investment. As remodeling projects go, bathroom renovations provide one of the better returns on investment at the time of a home sale.
If you’re thinking of remodeling your bathroom, keep reading for a bathroom remodel checklist that will make sure you catch all of the important elements of the project.
Figuring out a budget may feel like putting the horse before the cart, but it’s actually one of the most practical things you can do. Knowing how much you’re willing to spend or at least a very firm price range can inform everything from how extensive your remodeling project is to what kinds of fixtures you’ll get.
As a general point of reference, the average bathroom remodel runs about $11,200. In practice, a minor remodel might only cost $5000 or a major remodel might run $15,000 to over $20,000.
If you don’t settle on a firm budget before you start making major decisions, the total cost can keep rising as you become more and more invested emotionally in the project.
The budget serves as a sanity check on your ambition, as well as bells and whistles you might otherwise not consider.
When you first start thinking about remodeling your bathroom, it’s likely that you’re remodeling ideas are just vague notions. You might start with dissatisfaction over the appearance of the bathroom. For example, you may decide that the tile in the bathroom looks out of date
In other cases, your unhappiness may stem from more practical concerns. You might decide that the bathroom needs more storage now that your kids are approaching their teen years.
Once you start getting serious about the remodeling project, though, you need to decide where you will focus. Do you want a visual remodel that changes the look, a remodel that focuses on practical elements, or a total overhaul?
Despite the fact that bathrooms are often small rooms comparatively speaking, there are a lot of discrete elements that go into making a functional bathroom.
Some common areas that people decide they want changes include:
You should go through your bathroom with a notebook in hand and decide, piece by piece, what will stay and what will change. Don’t forget about small details like paint colors for the walls.
Unless you are exceptionally good at DIY, serious bathroom renovations are best left to professionals that specialize in bathroom remodeling. So, how do you pick the right contractor for your bathroom project?
First things first, ask around. There is a good chance you know someone who had a similar project done recently. If they’re happy, get the name of the remodeling company they used.
You can also do a little independent research online. You can run searches for things like “remodeling service near me.” If you want specialists, search for things like “bathroom remodeling services.”
Once you assemble a list, check out their websites. Look for photo galleries that show before and after shots. Head over to review sites and see what people have to say about the service.
That should help you narrow the options down to a manageable list. Finally, contact the companies that make the cut and ask them for estimates.
Some may provide estimates over the phone or web, but serious candidates will ask questions and probably want to see the bathroom. Compare the estimates and, all things being equal, pick the one that comes closest to your established budget.
Most contractors will have options in place to get you the designs for the finished project. Some work with in-house designers, while others outsource the design work.
Either way, you’ll need those designs. Since bathrooms intersect with major systems in the house, electrical, plumbing, and even heating, you’ll need permits for all but the most minor remodeling projects.
You can’t get those permits without professional designs to go with the permit application.
There’s good news on this front. If you work with a contractor, they typically take it as a given that pulling permits is one of their jobs. They fill out the paperwork and submit it to the correct city offices.
Depending on your location and the state of your local government, pulling permits can happen anywhere from very quickly to very slowly. As a general rule, you should expect the permitting process to take about three to four weeks.
Again, this is a task that the contractor typically handles. They’ll typically assemble a list based off of the designs you approved and their conversations with you about what materials you want.
Once the permits go through and the materials arrive, your role is mostly done. At this point, the contractor comes in and deals with any necessary demolition and waste removal.
After that, they rebuild based on the plans with the materials you approved. Ideally, the work will progress without any major setbacks and come in more or less on time and within your budget.
Then, you move on to enjoying your new bathroom.
The bathroom remodeling checklist above isn’t meant to serve as a comprehensive guide to every element of the project. Instead, it provides you with some of the major high points that you should keep in mind as you move through the process.
When in doubt, you can create a sub-list for specific areas. For example, you might create a sublist for picking new materials for the bathroom or a list of contractor websites to visit.
Designs 4 You offers bathroom remodeling services in San Diego County. If you’re gearing up for a bathroom remodeling project, contact Designs 4 You today.
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