Upgrading a bathroom is a worthy goal for those who want to improve the value of their home and add new features to it. Because a bathroom is such a major part of your routine, it’s also the biggest quality-of-life upgrade that you could possibly make.
After all, it’s a place you visit right after you wake up and right before going to bed.
It’s also a place where you relax in a shower/tub after a long day and overall a place that is both functional and ritualistic.
However, can one improve their bathroom on a budget? Here are several tips to prove that you can.
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1. Lookalike materials
Every material has its cheaper lookalike alternative. This is a notion that you would do well to exploit. For instance, instead of tiles, wooden floors or stone floors (all of which are relatively expensive), you could go for lookalike laminate flooring.
Laminate or PVC floor can have a texture of wood and they’re only a portion of its price. In other words, it’s an easy way out and it allows you to keep the aesthetics.
2. Refinish and repaint
Replacing an element or a fixture in your bathroom is an expensive endeavor. On the other hand, restoring it by painting or refinishing can create drastic effects with a minimum investment of effort and resources.
Repainting walls and wooden surfaces and refinishing a bathtub will convert all the major elements of the bathroom giving it a completely new look. While it doesn’t cost much, it does require quite a bit of investment in terms of effort.
3. Buy new hardware
Your old cabinets can be restored, as well. You should approach this as a two-step process. First, you refinish these cabinets. Second, you replace the hardware.
By installing new handles onto your repainted cabinets, you will completely change their look. This way, their appearance will be completely altered. The effect will be similar to completely replacing your bathroom equipment on a budget, without having to spend as much.
4. Repair bathroom appliances
If you have bathroom appliances that are out of order, you should start by either replacing or repairing them. Appliances like bathroom heaters should probably be replaced because it may be a safety risk (if faulty).
Other appliances, like a washing machine, should probably be repaired in order to stay on the budget. By replacing a part and performing basic maintenance, you could technically prolong the useful life of a washing machine by several years, perhaps even half-a-decade. The key thing is that you find a reliable supplier of washing machine parts and that you go for the quality.
5. New fixtures
By replacing several minor fixtures, you can completely alter the impression that your bathroom makes. By merely replacing a bathroom faucet and a showerhead, you will already achieve quite a bit.
Sure, this is far from inexpensive but the effect that it achieves is more than worth the price. Even though the layout of the bathroom remains the same, the aesthetics and the color palette will be a lot different. You can also change traditional metallic with copper elements in order to go for an industrial theme.
6. Bidet seat instead of a bidet
Adding a new feature or function to your bathroom may change the way you use it for good. Installing a bidet is one way to introduce this change, however, there is a more frugal alternative.
Namely, a bidet seat is something that will add a similar function but at merely a fraction of the cost. It will also allow you to save money on toilet paper, maintain hygiene more efficiently and spend fewer resources on your personal hygiene.
It is a quality-of-life update and once you try living this way, it will become quite difficult to even remember what your life was before you introduced this change. While bidets, as a trend, are still in their infancy as a trend, it is quickly growing and might soon reach its pinnacle.
7. Avoid changing major plumbing
Moving fixtures is a major problem and it will cost you quite a bit. It’s not like moving furniture around the room in order to change a layout.
There’s a reason why certain fixtures, features and appliances are where they are and in order to change this, you will probably have to hire a plumber and demolish an existing bathroom in the process. The materials will cost a fortune, the work of the plumber in question will be extensive and require a ton of time and effort.
Regardless if you pay them by the scope of work or number of work hours, the cost will end up being astronomical.
In the end, you need to make an investment either way. An investment of money can be reduced with a greater investment of effort and research.
Finding the right parts for the repair and suitable alternatives for high-end materials is not easy. Also, engaging in DIY projects will save you from a lot of avoidable fees but will consume your time.
Overall, you need to understand that to save on one end, you have to compensate somewhere else. This is a compromise that you need to accept in order to make your frugal bathroom remodeling project a success.
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