What To Consider When Planning A Bathroom Remodelling Project
Whether you’re looking to update your powder room or a master bedroom ensuite, bathroom renovations are among the most complex and challenging you can undertake in your home. With so many things to consider – plumbing, electricals and everything in between – a bathroom renovation can quickly turn into a disaster if you’re ill-prepared and inexperienced.
Before you start sledgehammering into walls or tiles, it is vital that you ask yourself some key planning questions that will help you define the scope of your project and equip you with the knowledge you need to successfully transform your space. Not entirely sure where to start? Here are 7 things you should consider when planning a bathroom remodelling project.
Figure Out Your Budget
Bathroom renovation is a huge project which can also mean that you’ll end up spending way more money than you anticipated. A simple makeover of surfaces and accessories can easily cost several thousand dollars, while a mid to high level remodel can range from anywhere between $15,000 to $20,000. If you’re planning to remodel to enhance the appeal of your bathroom with new additions (brand new sinks, bathtubs etc), then you will need to plan for an even larger budget.
At the end of the day, you need to have a budget that fits what you envision. We always recommend paying a visit to your local bathroom fittings and appliance store to get a rough idea of how much things cost. With that in mind, you’ll be able to better plan your remodel around your budget, rather than the other way around.
Apply For Building Permits
If you’re looking at making minor cosmetic touch-ups to your bathroom, you can skip this step. However, if you’re planning for major renovations, there is a high chance that you will need to apply for a building permit. The requirements for a building permit vary from state to state, although, most of the time at least one permit is required when undergoing renovations. Building permits certify that the work being carried out is compliant with Australian standards and building regulations. If you live in Victoria, be sure to check out this page to find out if you need a building permit prior to commencing your bathroom remodelling project.
Style and Functionality
Now that we’ve gotten most of the dry, nitty-gritty information out of the way, it’s time to focus on the style and functionality of your new bathroom. You may have grand ideas about how your dream bathroom should look, but always measure them against their functionality.
If you are drafting a design, it is vital that you consider various factors such as who will use the bathroom, how it will affect your resale value and so on. If you have small children, elderly parents or disabled occupants, some standard bathroom designs might make their use of the bathroom very difficult.
DIY or Professional?
Now that you’ve got a decent idea of what types of renovations or styles you are after, you need to take a good hard look at the project and decide whether you want to do it yourself or hire a professional. If you are making very minor renovations, chances are you’ll save a lot of money by doing it yourself. However, in more complex situations where plumbing, electrical and tiling are necessary, we always encourage enlisting the help of a few licensed professionals.
If you decide to hire a contractor, be sure to check that they are properly licensed. You’ll also want to be aware of permit requirements for electrical, plumbing, and general construction work. As mentioned in point 2, it is always a good idea to apply for permits sooner rather than later to avoid delays.
Avoid Trends or Fads
Now that you’re spending a small fortune on your bathroom renovations, it is time to get realistic about the longevity of your remodel. Remember – there are many bathroom trends that come and go and once upon a time, garish yellow or green bathrooms were all the rage. If you’re looking to renovate your bathroom into a space that will stand the test of time (and hopefully not take away from your resale value down the line), we urge you to avoid falling for the latest fad. Everyone is different, but we usually recommend building on a white, grey or neutral base with flashes of colour, texture and well-placed accessories.
For more information on how you can design a classic bathroom, be sure to check out this guide.
Time and Work Sequence
Never assume that any renovation work will take just a few days. The duration of your renovation is highly dependent on how many changes you are making, how major your construction is and of course, whether you are still residing in your home during the remodel. In 99% of cases, you and your family will be living alongside the renovations which can affect a contractor’s overall efficiency.
To avoid delaying or lengthening the process, you need to have a structured work plan to make work easier and reduce time wastage. If you’re doing a comprehensive remodelling, you should start from the top for easy cleanup.
Plan For Unexpected Hiccups
Last but not least, it is important to keep in mind that renovation hiccups happen all the time. There aren’t many renovations that don’t have at least one little diversion on its way to completion. The key to success is, of course, being prepared. Unforeseen circumstances may also lead to overstepping your budget, but the key is to avoid maxing out your budget in the first place. Always leave yourself a buffer of at least 10% of the total cost for the worst-case scenario.
Additionally, be sure to line up at least one or two backup tradespeople just in case things go awry. To secure these ‘back-up plans’, get at least three quotes when costing out your renovation and use one of those if the others fall through. Remember, you can never be too safe or prepared when it comes to costly, time-consuming home renovations.
And there you have it – our top 7 factors to consider when planning a bathroom remodelling project. If you’re considering revamping your bathroom, we hope that these essential tips help you with your decision making and keep you on the right track throughout the project. All the best and happy renovating!