If your would-be sanctuary is a major sore spot, you’re not alone. Bathrooms are second only to the kitchen on people’s wish lists of rooms to remodel, especially since the current economy-induced deferred maintenance has pushed so many past their 20-year lifespan. “At that age, bathrooms really start to get tired,” says Art Donnelly, president of Legacy Design Build in Mount Sinai, New York. “Leaky toilets, grimy grout, loose tiles—you name it, it’s probably an issue.”
After removing your shower head and handle, cover your shower floor with newspaper. Take your hammer and chisel and start from the bottom corner. Gently place the chisel on the side of tile and use your hammer to push the tile out. Start gently. As you move on, you may have to use some real elbow grease to get these tiles out. Once all tile has been removed, chisel off any remaining mortar as well.
Mixing modern with antique is the secret to this bathroom's signature look. Both the vanity and sink/faucet combination are simplistic but foster vintage and contemporary aesthetics. This single-lever faucet is easy to use, and the tall spout is the perfect height to deliver water to the vessel sink. A nickel finish on all the fixtures creates a cohesive look in this master bath.
These compact spaces are often tucked into nooks in the home, such as converted pantry closets or the cavity beneath a staircase. They’re all about economy of space, though the best examples also emphasize design. “This is not a high-traffic room, so function is not as important as the wow factor,” says says Elizabeth Goltz, owner of Design by Orion in Kansas City.
Full bathroom: This is any bathroom with a full range of amenities—toilet, vanity, sink, and tub/shower. It is a bathroom that is normally used every day. In homes with two or more full bathrooms, one full bath may be designated as the master bath, with others are dedicated to one or more children. Full bathrooms get lots of use, which has an impact on the fixtures and materials you choose for it.
Given the complexity of bathrooms—multiple components in a compact space, not to mention all that water—doing the project right is a challenge. (See Remodeling Dos and Don'ts.) On a cost-per-square-foot basis, bathrooms are one of the most expensive spaces to remodel. But that doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune. That’s where Consumer Reports’ Bathroom Remodeling Guide comes in. Our product testers have spent months rating the latest toilets, sinks, countertops, and other bathroom essentials to separate the winners from the also-rans. We’ve also interviewed designers, contractors, and real estate pros nationwide to find out what to include—and what to skip—on your bathroom-remodel wish list.
Bathroom Renovations Sydney did a superb job from start to finish when I wanted to get my bathroom redesigned and reconstructed. I opted for their traditional bathroom renovations service and the price they quoted was incredible. Despite initial speculations, the entire remodeling was done perfectly and my bathroom looks absolutely exquisite now! I would definitely recommend their home improvement and designing services.
Guest bathroom: This is a full-service bathroom, with sink, toilet, and shower or shower/tub combination, but one that is used sporadically when guests visit. In empty-nest homes, a kids' full bathroom might be converted to a guest bath. Because guest baths get only occasional use, many people choose to use economy fixtures and materials, which can greatly cut costs. And because this is a secondary bathroom, you can take your time remodeling it, which also saves cost.
Planning. Both DIY and contractor remodeling jobs depend on good up-front planning in order to control costs and keep things speedy. Some of the key elements include drawing plans (essential if your remodel will involve layout changes to the bathroom), obtaining building permits, signing contracts with any pros you will use and scheduling their time, and sourcing and ordering materials. A general contractor will do most of this work for you (which is why he costs more), but to save money, you can do all the planning work yourself.