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How To Remodel A Bathroom On A Budget

There are so many home improvement and home make-over shows on TV. Social media and the internet are burgeoning with beautiful photos of tastefully decorated houses that leave you dispassionately eying your own home. 

Remodeling your whole house is way out of your budget, but you’ve seen the difference an updated bathroom can make. So, can you remodel your bathroom for a reasonable price?

You can remodel a bathroom on a budget. Start with a thorough clean and a set budget. Pick the top two problem features and tackle those first. Use the remaining money to make small changes to the rest of your bathroom. DIY what you can to save on labor costs but be realistic about your abilities. Refurbish rather than replace and buy second-hand rather than new.

Remodeling a bathroom can change the whole feel of a house. It can also increase its retail price. So, whether you are trying to make your home more enjoyable or trying to raise its value, a bathroom remodel is always a good idea. You can achieve a decent remodel on a budget of $1,000 to $3,000. Some people have managed on less! 

Getting Started

Set your budget before you begin. In this way, you minimize the temptation to push the budget beyond your means when considering all the changes you want to make. Then give your bathroom a thorough clean; walls, doors, and ceilings included. Scrub the grout and caulk with a toothbrush and a specialized cleaner or a mixture of baking soda and vinegar.

Once your bathroom is clean, pick the top two worst areas you should focus on. This could be the paint, toilet, basin, tiling, or even clutter. After sorting these two problem areas out, you can allocate the remaining money to other small improvements. 

Decide what you can do yourself and then price professional labor rates for the other jobs. Be practical in assessing your abilities, but also don’t be afraid to learn something new. 

Painting

Repainting your bathroom is a cheap and effective option, but don’t compromise on the paint quality! Bathrooms are always exposed to moisture and are susceptible to the growth of mold; high-quality paint will ensure the durability of the paint job. Fresh paint doesn’t just look better; depending on the colors and style, it can change the whole dynamic of the bathroom. 

Light and bright colors make the bathroom feel bigger. But don’t just paint everything white. Using an off-white cream or even a light grey can be very appealing and change the whole look of your bathroom. Painting a feature wall in a bolder color or painting the ceiling in a bold color will modernize the room with minimal effort. Two-tone or an ombre effect can also improve the look of the bathroom. 

You will save money if you do the painting yourself. Painting is an easy skill to learn and perfect. Make sure you take extra time to paint tidily around all the fixtures and corners to give it a professional look. 

Caulk And Grout 

As mentioned earlier, clean caulk and grout will make a big difference. If it’s stained and not able to be cleaned, you should replace it. Replacing the grout can make your tiles look new, and replacing the caulk can neaten up the look of your bathtub and basin. 

Hardware And Light Fixtures

You can refurbish your hardware. Hardware includes the door and drawer handles on your cabinets, towel rails, faucets, toilet paper holders, and showerheads. If these are metal, they may benefit from simple polishing. Alternatively, you can spray paint them a different color to give them the desired look.

You don’t have to spend tons of money if you choose to replace the hardware. You can replace all the hardware in your bathroom for less than $150. Look for special offers or source vintage faucets and handles to restore and install. 

Lighting is a priority in a bathroom. A weak light bulb or a dirty light shade will create shadows and gloominess. Replace the lightbulb with a stronger one and clean the shade. You should also consider using energy saver bulbs. These may cost a little more, but they last longer and help to conserve electricity. 

If you are unhappy with the effect of a new lightbulb and clean cover, you can investigate new light fixtures. A new light fixture can cost less than $100 to buy. Additionally, if you don’t have a light in your shower, you can buy a long or multi-angled light fixture. Illuminating the inside of your shower makes a huge difference to the appearance and appeal of your bathroom. By buying a new light fitting, you can avoid having to touch the wiring. 

Another feature that can improve the appearance of your bathroom is a mirror. Mirrors create light and space. Replace a small mirror with a large one. Replace an outdated frame with a stylish new or DIY-ed frame.

Tiles

Tiling or re-tiling a bathroom can become expensive, especially if you have to hire a professional. If you have no tiles in your bathroom, then only tile the floor. This will sufficiently alter the appearance of the bathroom, and if you coordinate the tiles, paint, and grout well, the final result can be spectacular! You can repaint existing tiles or resurface them with tile stickers for about $100. 

Laying your own tiles can save you lots of money, but you need to educate yourself before starting so you can do it right. 

Countertops

Bathroom countertops are typically small, so you may be able to afford a granite top. Remember that not all granite is the same price. Less neutral colors or granites with imperfections are generally cheaper.

You can convert an old, reclaimed dresser into a basin pedestal by cutting holes for the sink and plumbing. This is cheaper than buying a new countertop and will be a unique feature of your bathroom. 

If you have a sturdy but ugly countertop, you can tile it instead of replacing it. And, because it is a small area, you may be able to afford fancy tiles. 

Fixtures: Bath, Toilet, Basin, And Shower

Pick the worst fixture and replace that one if you can afford it. It will be costly to replace all of it. Bathtubs are generally one of the more expensive fixtures to replace. If it is stained or just looking sad, get it re-finished. This will make it shiny and smooth again. 

If you don’t have the funds to replace your toilet, try replacing only the seat. 

Replacing your shower curtain and hooks is a cheap way to boost the appearance of your bathroom. 

Do not move the plumbing unless absolutely necessary, and understand that this will use up a large portion of your budget.

Storage

Refurbishing your existing cabinets instead of buying new ones will save money. Replacing soap-dishes, shower caddies, toothbrush holders, etc., is an inexpensive way to improve the look of your bathroom. 

If there is insufficient storage space, it can result in clutter. Installing a wall cabinet ($60-$100) or floating shelves ($20-$30) can provide additional storage space as well as room for décor. 

Wall storage is helpful if you have a small bathroom with limited floor space. If you have a bigger bathroom, you can install standing units. Instead of buying a new unit, get an old one which you can refurbish. 

Linen

Buying new linen can put the finishing touch on your remodeled bathroom. Additionally, matching linen adds sophistication and can be used as a decoration. 

Lace curtains are outdated. By replacing a lace curtain with blinds, you can update the look of your bathroom. The design of plantation blinds allows an angle that does not prevent light from entering the bathroom but does inhibit visibility into the bathroom.

Conclusion

It is easy to remodel a bathroom on a budget; you just need to be practical and imaginative. There are so many small changes that give new life to your bathroom, and it should start with a thorough cleaning. Sparkling white grout and caulk will make a massive difference. 

Avoid moving any of the plumbed fittings in your bathroom, as this can be an expensive endeavor. New paint and refurbished cabinets might be all that is required to improve the look of your bathroom. Further small and inexpensive touches are replacing the hardware and linen. 

Replace only what you cannot refurbish and look for second-hand or reclaimed items to upcycle rather than buying new. Do what you can by yourself; painting, tiling, and replacing hardware are relatively easy tasks to tackle after a little research and a few instructional videos. 

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