9 Ways To Keep Your Bath Project's Budget Under Control

ProSource | 9/9/2015 | Project Tips

According to Remodeling magazine's 2015 Cost vs. Value Report, a mid-range bathroom remodel will run you approximately $16,700, but you can easily spend about $25,000 depending on the amount of work you plan on having done.

But there’s good news: The report also estimates that bathroom remodels recoup 70 percent of their cost at resale. Follow these nine tips to help you keep your project’s budget under control and get the most out of your bathroom remodel.

1.  Make A List

Before you jump into your bathroom remodeling project, make a list of your needs and wants, and know which is which. Then decide which ones you can live without, and which ones fit the functionality and design aesthetics you’re looking for in your remodel. Certain elements will cost more than others, so you’ll have to give and take a little.

If you want high-end bathroom fixtures for example, you might have to go with a lower end vanity. According to the National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA), fixtures are the largest expense in a bathroom remodel. If you must have that gorgeous glass vessel sink, then pick a standard toilet. Or if your heart’s set on the Kohler Karbon wall-mount faucet, opt for a lower-end sink.

2.  Facelifts Can Be Powerful

Cosmetic changes can make a big impact on the look and feel of your bathroom without having to completely start over. Purchase new fixtures where they’re necessary to update your room, such as a low-flow toilet or a water-saving showerhead, and then look to paint and accessories to give new life to your space.

Replace faucets, drawer pulls and towel bars. Add crisp, clean lines of white grout and a fresh, even bead of caulk around the tub to give a fresh look to an older space.

3.  Get Social

Social media has provided homeowners with a great resource to get recommendations on designers and contractors from people you trust, as well as reading reviews and comparing bids on bathroom remodel projects.

Use your online connections to find the two or three most highly recommended designers and contractors in your area. ProSource can help you locate one as well.

Invite them to view your space and provide you with a quote for your bathroom remodeling project. Review each quote thoroughly and ask questions upfront to avoid misunderstandings down the road.

4.  Plan Ahead

Knowing all of the potential costs upfront will help you plan your budget – and stick to it. One of the fastest ways homeowners go over budget is by getting stuck with costs they never saw coming when they estimated their project. Overlooked factors include sub-floor removal and installation costs.

Another factor that can help you stay within your budget is to understand what costs can simply be avoided altogether. If your designer or contractor recommends relocating bathroom fixtures such as toilets, tubs and bath vanities, find out why. If you can keep the same floor plan you have now, you'll spend less on plumbing.

Contact your local ProSource Showroom for a referral to a designer who can show you bathroom floor plans that would allow the fixtures to remain in their current locations.

5.  Use Accents

Tile is a major expense in a bathroom remodel, especially if you’ve got your heart set on a high-end designer tile, or want to install it not only on the floor, but in the shower, as well. Limiting the location of the tile to the floor and the tub surround will save you a large chunk of your budget.

And if you can convince yourself to use those expensive bathroom tiles as accents among a simpler style, you’ll stand to save a great deal of money. Instead of running tile up the wall, consider bead board wainscoting or a deep accent paint color to complement your design.

6.  Think Outside The Bathroom

Rather than spending a large amount of your budget on built-ins, opt for pedestal or wall-mount sinks and use furniture as storage. Today’s trend of furniture as cabinetry makes it easy to save money and design a room that looks of-the-moment.

Recycle an older bedside table or side cabinet and add a remnant of granite or marble to the top – small pieces don’t cost much and will save you a great deal overall.

7.  Do The Demo

If you’re able, doing some of the bathroom remodeling work yourself can ease your budget considerably – funds that can then be used to hire a trade professional for the installation. While it’s hard manual labor, performing the bathroom demolition can save a considerable amount of money in both labor fees and hauling charges.

Painting is another chore that can save you money. It’s time consuming, but not too difficult and it’s fulfilling to see the finished project after a hard day’s work.

8.  Purchase Fixtures Yourself

You can save quite a bit of money by purchasing your own fixtures such as sinks and faucets. If you’re working with a ProSource Trade Pro Member, you can visit a showroom for inspiration and benefit from wholesale pricing.

Whether you purchase the materials yourself, or have a contractor do it, be sure they are high quality. Low quality materials might save you a bit of money now, but they won’t pay off in the long run, especially in rooms like your bathroom that are exposed to steam, mildew and mold.

9.  Set Up A Payment Schedule

Arrange a clearly defined payment schedule with several installments throughout the project. It’s never a good idea to pay in full before your project is completed. Don’t make your last payment until the project is completed to your satisfaction.

Review inspiration and the product catalog to find the bathroom look you desire, and add the images to the myProSource Project Center to share with your friends and, of course, your trade professional.

Starting a new bathroom remodeling project can be both exciting and intimidating. But approaching your project with the right mindset from the start will help you keep your budget under control. And that will allow you to focus on achieving your desired outcome – a beautiful new bathroom to enjoy!

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