10 design tips for making your bathroom remodeling dreams a reality

10 Design tips that can make your bathroom remodeling dreams a reality

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The bathroom is one of the most used rooms in any house, yet it is often overlooked when it comes to decorating and renovations.

Remodeling your bathroom can be a daunting task. Before you decide to tear apart the bathroom there's some things you need to consider. Whether you need inspiration to find the right style or find the right bathroom contractor, we've got you covered.

When remodeling your bathroom decide if you are making surface alterations or a full remodel.

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1. How far do you want to take your bathroom remodeling?

The first thing you need to consider is how far you want to go with remodeling the bathroom. You have a few options, depending on your needs and your budget.

Surface alterations: Installing new flooring or refinishing your bathtub can give your restroom the lift it needs to refresh the entire look.

Change the layout: If you don't want your toilet to be front and center, and it shouldn't be, you can opt to change the layout of the restroom. Keep in mind this can get costly if the plumbing needs to be moved as well.

Complete bathroom remodeling: If pretty much everything in your bathroom needs to be replaced, removed or updated you're looking at high costs and time to complete your bathroom remodeling project.

If your bathroom remodeling will include installing things like new tiles, sink or countertop take time to think about the material you are choosing. Maintenance and long-term durability are vital when choosing materials for your restroom. You want something that will be easy to clean and durable to last the wear-and-tear of the restroom.

2. How much are you willing to spend on your bathroom remodel

Once you've decided on how far you want to go with the restroom remodeling, you need to decide on a budget. Before starting your remodeling project, it's important to balance your expectations with how much you can afford to invest.

There's a few factors that can affect the cost of a remodel: the size of the restroom, the quality of materials and the remodeling contractor you choose to hire. Keep in mind, you may need additional licensed professionals like plumber or electrician depending on the work.

Bathroom remodeling costs can range from $15,000 to $18,000 for a basic remodel.

If you're on a tight budget, perhaps choose only a couple of elements to remodel like keeping your current floor but updating your sink.

Be aware of the space you have to work with when choosing the materials for remodeling the bathroom.

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3. Consider the space you have to work with

Knowing a few dimensions and measurements, like the size required for a bathtub or toilet, will help you plan your remodel quickly.

There's a few design tips most people wouldn't think of that can take your bathroom from cramped to comfortable.

Consider installing a corner sink to free up some of the traffic space in the bathroom. Many manufacturers are making smaller bathtubs now to fit in chic, smaller spaces that can also free up a lot of space.

Make sure to measure your space before choosing your new sink or toilet. Typical sinks and cabinets require about 30 inches in front for comfortable clearance.

4. Hiring a contractor

One of the most important things to consider when remodeling the bathroom is hiring a contractor. While there are small things you can do yourself, you should strongly consider hiring a bathroom remodeling contractor for anything more than surface alterations.

Remodeling your restroom will require hiring a licensed, experienced bathroom remodeling contractor to install features like plumbing lines, sinks, faucets, tiling and flooring.

Make sure the bathroom contractor you hire is properly licensed, especially when it comes to plumbing and electrical work.

A bathroom remodeling contractor is essential to make sure your restroom remodeling is completed properly, that everything is sealed and insulated against moisture and up to proper standards.

Separate your toilet from the rest of the bathroom for a more visually appealing look with your bathroom renovation.

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5. Don't make your toilet the first thing you see

A simple design tip if you are considering changing the layout or completely remodeling the restroom is making sure your toilet isn't the first thing you see.

Many handymen are skilled in basic home repairs, but they aren't licensed plumbers, carpenters or electricians.

Where a handyman may be suitable for small plumbing and carpentry jobs, larger jobs like remodeling should be contracted to a licensed tradesman. This is especially important when dealing with electrical work.

If the handyman says he can complete your home repair project but they aren't licensed, use your discretion. If you feel the job requires too much work, go with your gut and hire a licensed tradesman.

6. Enhance your bathroom with the right lighting

Often overlooked but a very important feature to any bathroom is proper lighting. A good approach is to layer task, ambient and accent lighting.

Wall lights are great for your bathroom because they help eliminate shadows by the mirror. Overhead lights used in conjunction with wall lights further reduce shadows and give better lighting for personal grooming.

Add to your lighting scheme and help make your small space look bigger and brighter with mirrors. If you want your restroom to have a warm, sophisticated feel, consider mirrors framed in wood. For a more contemporary feel, try shaped mirrors grouped artistically.

Certain types of flooring – like ceramic tile or laminate – are good choices when remodeling the bathroom.

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7. Consider flooring

Unlike a hallway or kitchen, not just any old flooring will do for your bathroom remodeling. Moisture is the biggest enemy your bathroom has, so consider your flooring options carefully.

Ceramic tile and laminate flooring are both good choices to keep moisture at bay, are easy to clean and are durable. Avoid hardwood flooring when remodeling your restroom as it doesn't tolerate moisture.

8. Sink features

Sink selection can be a daunting task with the seemingly endless choice of styles and features. If you have the space, a "Jack and Jill" bathroom is ideal, so you have two sinks and your own personal space.

Remember that typical countertops are on average 32 to 34 inches off the floor, but your sink can add or take away from that.

On-the-counter vessel sinks will require a lower cabinet so you can use the sink comfortably. Figure out how much space you have to work with, and then choose the style of sink and cabinet that best suits your bathroom remodeling style.

If you rarely take a bath consider replacing your tub with a shower when you remodel the bathroom.

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9. Replace your bulky bathtub with a shower

If you never take a bath, consider converting your bathtub with a shower. Your unused bathtub can take up a 5-foot by 2½-foot area that can be turned into a more practical space

Don't be afraid to convert; not only is it cost-effective, the shower will make use of the existing space and you won't have to reroute the plumbing.

10. Sometimes it's worth spending a little more

When remodeling the bathroom, it's worth splurging on a few higher end materials. Another design tip is that putting out a little extra money on a few higher-end materials or finishes can be a great investment for your home and make your smaller bathroom feel luxurious.

Your first instinct may be to only look at only basic and affordable materials, and for most of it that may work.

But try choosing one or two features you use every day, like a sink or toilet, that are high end. You may be surprised that it's in your budget after all.