Budgeting for a Bathroom Renovation

When you are looking to renovate your bathroom, either a main bathroom or a guest one, there are so many options and varieties to choose from. With all of those options comes a cost range from very basic to completely extravagant, and all of that can be very overwhelming when it comes to determining a realistic budget and figuring out how much you really want to spend on this renovation. One of the most important steps in completing this project is determining, and sticking to, a budget you are comfortable with. However, you should also keep in mind you might need to create a contingency budget just in case something comes up, like mold is found behind your shower walls, and you need some extra money to fix it.

Before you decide a budget, though, you will want to think about a couple things. Things such as how much of a renovation are you willing to do: back to the studs or just a cosmetic renovation? How long are you planning to live in your home for? Are you doing this renovation just for resale value? The answers to all of these questions will determine how much you want to spend on this project.

There are, roughly, three levels of renovation and they are determined by budget. These budgets are just ranges, and can provide you with an idea of what you can do with that kind of money.

The Basic Upgrade: < $3,000 – $10,000

This upgrade can definitely be completed as a DIY project and does not have to cause a major upheaval in your home, especially if you are renovating your main bathroom. With this budget you will probably not be able to move any plumbing, so it is mostly just upgrading features in their existing places in your space. You also probably will not be able to do any custom tile work, or a walk in spa shower but there are a lot of options from home improvement stores that will definitely touch up your existing space and give you a brand new look. You can also make up for the lack of custom touches by splurging on fancy accessories such as a really fancy light fixture, faucet or really great vanity and sink. These touches will make your bathroom look really high end at a much lower cost.

Mid-Level Upgrade: $10,000 – $20,000

This is definitely a big range for a budget however it depends on how much of the work you want to hire out, or how capable you are yourself of doing this project. It will also depend on where you live: some places have much higher labour and materials costs than others. For this budget you will get much higher quality fixtures and you can probably outsource your work to a professional so you will not have to live with the headache of completing it. You can also start looking at making adjustments to the layout of your bathroom, but small ones. You can maybe put in a smaller tub for maybe a larger walk in shower. You could probably also move the sink around a little to allow for a large storage cabinet in your room. This budget definitely gives you quite a bit of wiggle room in terms of what you want to do; it also allows for you to include a contingency right into your budget while still having room to do all the things you want to do.

High End Upgrade: $20,000 +

This budget allows you to completely rip out everything in your bathroom and start brand new, as in right back to the studs brand new. You can design a completely new bathroom and even knock out some walls to make a bigger space. At this budget you can get the highest end fixtures possible, including custom tile work. You could also put in a free standing tub, and a luxury walk in shower with custom storage solutions. Overall with this budget you can pretty much do anything you want, and you will have an amazing space to show off to your family and friends. With this budget you could also consider doing all of the bathrooms in your home with a smaller budget for each, but you would then have multiple brand new bathrooms in your home. This would be beneficial if you were doing work to help sell your home in the near future.

Overall your budget is one of the more important things to determine for your project before you start. Once you begin looking at fixtures and shower stall options your budget can quickly get out of hand if you are not careful. Further, if you start looking at custom options you might need a professional to come in and install it all for you. These options can quickly eat up the money you have without careful planning. It is recommended you figure out your overall total budget, and then figure out where you want to spend that money: what area is most important to you? Do you really want a brand new shower, or a freestanding tub? Or, is having heated floors at the top of your list? No matter what your priority is make sure you figure out how much you want to spend before you start getting quotes, or making purchases.


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