Remodeling your bathroom yourself is a viable option for many home owners who are on a budget. Take your time and plan ahead and have everything you need on the job site before you begin. Also shop the Internet to compare prices and buy items.
The following tips will help you avoid common mistakes and make your friends think that you actually hired a bathroom designer.
- Building Permits
Get a building permit even if you are doing the work yourself. Have all plumbing and electrical work inspected by your county and local government. This ensures that the job is meets the code and that insurance companies will honor claims if your house floods or catches fire later on.
- Paint Colors
Use an eggshell finish on the ceiling and walls.
Benjamin Moore Simply White for ceiling, semi gloss for door and trim.
See our article for some great paint colors for bathrooms.
- Ceramic tile
Tile to the ceiling inside the tub area and shower. Best grout size is 1/8 inch
Do a wainscoat with tile up 41-42 inches. If budget does not permit at least do tile base molding to simplify cleaning.
Lay floor on diagonal to increase perception of space. Grout size is 1/8 inch.
Floor tiles should be slip resistant.
If you are partial to wood floors in your bathroom, see Woodtec Porecelain tile article.
- Vanity Sinks and Faucets
At least 20 inches from the center line of the sink ot the wall.
36" x 48" minimum clear floor space in front.
Get faucets with an 8 inch spread or single hole. A 4 inch spread signifies builder grade.
- Shower Tips
Size should be 36" x 36" but you can get a way with 30" x 30"
Avoid objects that project into the shower space.
Bench size recommended is 15" deep x 17"-19" high.
Doors must swing out.
Bathtub shower enclosure- use a decorative shower curtain.
- Bath Tips
Grab bars for safety at all ages.
30" x 48" in front of tub.
Avoid steps leading to tub.
Consider slip resistant material on bath bottom.
- Lighting Tips
Avoid strip lignting and get a vanity lgiht with the appropriate number of lights.
Two light vanity for 24 inch vanity, three light for 30-36 inch wide vanity.
Use frosted (never clear) fan lights in vanity lights so the bulb is not seen.
Don't do wall-to-wall mirrors.
Buy a decorative mirror instead at Marhshalls, Home Goods or Target.
- Toilet Tips
48" x 48" clear floor space in front of toilet.
Elongated toilets are more comfortable, but make sure you have room for them.
Toilet needs 36" width but you could get by with 30" if building code permits.
Invest in a good toilet with adequate flushing power.
- Toilet Tissue Holder Tips
Preferred location is 26" off finished floor.
8-12" in front of toilet.
Need to have solid wood to hang hooks for robes. The hollow doors won't last.