So you want to give your bathroom a new look without flushing any funds down the toilet? Check out these tips for saving money during your bathroom remodel.
By Alyson McNutt English, HGTV.com
Have a Plan Before You Start
Working with a designer or architect may seem like a pricey move right out of the gate for someone wanting to remodel their bathroom on a budget, but it is money well spent. Having a plan you’ve worked out with a professional will assure you that your design, budget and timeline are realistic, and it will give you a goal with a path to get there. “Hiring a designer saves you time and money in the long run, so you don’t make expensive errors,” says south Florida-based designer Meredith Marlow.
Keep Plumbing Where It Is
Another reason to work with a designer on your bathroom renovation: Using the existing piping will save you big bucks. Relocating utilities like the toilet and the bathtub are no small task: Designer Justin Riordan says it costs about $5,000 each time you move plumbing fixtures.
Dress up that builder-grade mirror with a fantastic frame, and at a fraction of the price of sourcing a huge hanging mirror. A frame will also hide any age-related wear, says Karen Gray Plaisted, a Warwick, N.Y.-based home stager and decorator. “I often tell clients to add a frame around their mirror to hide the flaking that can happen around the edges, and to give it a more updated look,” she says.
The Vanity of Furniture
Want to upgrade your tired vanity? Try hunting vintage and antique dressers at flea markets and antique stores. It’s not difficult to cut out the space to hide the plumbing and seal drawers that need to stay in place, and you can set a sink in it or on it. No one will have another one like yours, and you won’t have shelled out big bucks for a run-of-the-mill piece.
Alternatives to Tile
The bath doesn’t have to have tile to the ceiling: consider alternatives like reclaimed wood panels, board and batten, or beadboard as high-end looking tile replacements. Wood requires more maintenance, but also gives off a much warmer, comforting vibe than tile.
Consider Open Shelves
The bathroom is a private place, but open shelving can create the illusion of space in smaller square footage, and with a less weighty wallet hit than cabinets. A few drawers or covered baskets on high shelves can house your private items, and your colorful towels, pretty soaps and washes, and other bathroom decor don’t have to hide in a dark closet any longer.