Bathroom refurbishments are often fairly significant jobs. It’s therefore important to do everything you can to get them right. With that in mind, here are some pro tips for bathroom refurbishments.
Create a Gantt chart of your plans
This may sound a bit geeky but it can save you time, money, and frustration. With Gantt charting, you break your project down into your component steps. Each step gets its own line on a chart. Then you work out what steps depend on what other steps. For example, if you want to install new faucets on a sink, then you need to have the sink installed.
Your Gantt chart will let you see where tasks need to be done in a specific order and where there is room for flexibility. This allows you to plan your order of work effectively and hence minimize the length of time your bathroom is out of action.
Set a realistic budget
First, you need to set an overall budget for your bathroom refurbishment. Ideally, add at least 10% so you have room to maneuver. If at all possible, add 20%. Realistically, you may not have all that money available at once. That’s fine. It just means that you have to do your bathroom refurbishment in stages.
This is where your Gantt chart will come in handy. It will basically guide you as to where and when you need to deploy your budget. One key point to remember is that you can generally recycle items from your current bathroom to keep you going until your refurbishment is complete. For example, you can change out your sink but reuse your old faucets until you have money for new ones.
Try to stick with your existing plumbing
Unless your plumbing actually needs to be replaced, try to stick with it if at all possible. Even minor changes to piping can add a significant amount to the cost of a bathroom refurbishment. This can be reasonable if you’re going to see a significant amount of benefit from them. In most cases, however, the costs of reworking plumbing will far outweigh the benefit you’ll get.
Instead, choose appliances that make the most of the existing plumbing. Then fit in storage astutely. For example, if you wanted to move plumbing to make space for a sink with a vanity, consider splitting out the components instead. Use a wall-hung sink, put in a little bit of storage for essentials, then move your main storage elsewhere.
Larger wall-hung sinks have plenty of space for grooming. They also have plenty of space for your feet underneath. Visually, they create the illusion of extra space due to the gap between the basin and the floor. This can be all it takes to make a small space feel open rather than cramped.
Consider saying goodbye to your bathtub
If you have a large bathroom, then a bathtub can be a real indulgence. Even then, however, it’s usually best to have a shower as well. The good news is that you can now get super-luxurious bath-and-shower cabins. These give you everything you could possibly want like a whirlpool bath with a hydrotherapy steam shower, radio, Bluetooth, and chromotherapy lights.
If, however, you have an average-sized bathroom or smaller then saying goodbye to your bathtub can free up a lot of space. You can have a decent-sized shower plus a lot of storage. What’s more, you don’t have to feel like you’re missing out. In fact, you may even find the change makes you feel better about using your bathroom.
Modern showers can be every bit as relaxing and luxurious as baths. You might find this surprising but it’s true. You can add a shower stool so you can sit and soak. You can also have music and chromotherapy lights. If you go for a premium shower cabin, you can even have hydrotherapy jets and steam.
You’ll definitely get more space for storage. This can make your bathroom a lot less cluttered and more functional. In fact, it can turn it from a space you use as little as possible to your own, private home spa.
Remember to think about heating
Most bathrooms are going to need some form of heating. If you’re doing a major bathroom refurbishment, you could look at putting in underfloor heating. This works very well in bathrooms because they’re generally very small spaces. It’s also very much appreciated in bathrooms since you generally use them in bare feet (or bare feet in slippers).
If that’s not an option, then your choice is really between a bathroom radiator and a heated towel rail. In general, the bigger your bathroom is, the more important it is that you use a proper bathroom radiator. In smaller bathrooms, however, a heated towel rail may do the trick. You just need to remember to keep it clear of towels so it heats the room instead.
Whichever option you go for, it can make sense to go for a smart appliance especially if you’re not attaching it to central heating. Smart devices can work on timers and also be controlled remotely. Remote-control can be especially useful for those trips to the bathroom in the middle of the night. Just switch on the heater from your bed and the bathroom can warm up while you walk to it.
Take lighting seriously
Lighting is important for safety as well as aesthetics. This is particularly true in bathrooms. You, therefore, need to make sure that you have ample overhead lighting as well as task lighting. You also need at least one battery-powered light in case there is a power cut. Remember, bathroom floors can get very slippery. If you can’t see your way clearly you may fall badly.
Ideally, you should have battery-operated lights easily reachable from each of the main appliances. This can actually be easier to achieve than it sounds because many battery-operated lights are decorative as well as functional. You can also get waterproof ones to go in showers and at the side of baths.
On a similar note, mirrors can do a lot more than let you check your appearance. They can help to maximize the available light (natural or artificial). They also really do help to make a small space look much bigger. If you’re putting a mirror in a bathroom, it’s best to choose a mirror that’s actually designed for use in bathrooms. The humidity can quickly destroy regular mirrors.