Build the Bathroom of Your Dreams
4 bathroom remodel tips to avoid costly mistakes and create a one-of-a-kind design
Whether you hope to stay in your home forever or plan to move in several years, a bathroom remodel is an important investment.
Here are four insider tips to follow when you’re ready to build the bathroom of your dreams.
1. Work with a Contractor
With a contractor in charge, there’s less stress for the homeowner. Most homeowners think they’re saving money by being their own project manager, but a contractor can help you avoid costly and amateur mistakes.
There’s an art to the coordination of a renovation involving 5-7 individual trades working in a small space. The typical homeowner doesn’t even know where to start—and if the project is not completed in an organized fashion, things can go wrong, cost more and take longer.
An experienced contractor knows how to plan a remodel efficiently. They know where to expect potential delays and how to turn them into opportunities for progress in other areas. A contractor’s experience can lead to invaluable creative solutions.
Additionally, contractors will obtain necessary permits, make sure the project is compliant and schedule inspections. Often they’ll have a relationship with the local inspectors and know what they expect, making this process less time consuming by obtaining approval on the first inspection.
2. Use Quality Materials
High quality fixtures and faucets contain well-engineered inner workings that won’t deteriorate in poor water quality or break with rough use, and the fine finishes won’t pit, discolor or flake.
Quality level in tile and stone may only be obvious to the installer, but it will be very apparent in the final product. Finer cut edges in natural stone will create more defined corners/joints, and finishes on porcelain and ceramic tile will be more resistant to chipping, fading and scratching.
Protective coatings on shower glass prevent visible staining, corrosion and discoloration. A shower glass enclosure can be one of the most expensive products in the bathroom, so investing in quality is well worth the extra cost.
Most importantly, a quality product is supported by good customer service. Plumbing fixtures require maintenance, and if you want your bathroom to last a lifetime, you’re likely to have periodic repairs. Reliable brands will stand behind their products and many provide replacement parts free of charge. You can review warranty periods and policies, and work with a showroom or design professional who knows the brands that have proven durability and dependable customer service.
3. Avoid Trends
A trend is one of the most difficult factors to decipher. How do we know if it’s just a trend, or actually a new normal or a new classic? The last thing you want is to invest your money in a bathroom remodel and five years later, look at your design and think, “This is so last year” or “I’m so tired of seeing this everywhere.” That is the risk with trends.
If you see it everywhere, and you see it everywhere fast, it’s probably not going to last.
Some trends last less than a year while others may stick around long enough to define a decade. Once a trend defies the confines of a single decade, it might be considered a classic. Carrara marble is an example of a timeless classic—it will never go out of style and it is used in everything from a contemporary minimalist bath to the most ornate and traditional.
We can also count on white fixtures never going out of style. The blue, pink and yellow fixtures, paired with color-matched tile defined the bathroom of the 50’s. While color, in general, is making a comeback this year, these shades have been out of style for over half a century. The 80’s brought in some darker colors like hunter green and maroon, and the 90’s got even darker with black. White (and off-white shades) will always be in style and remain timeless.
When designing your bathroom, picture yourself showing it to somebody one year from now, five years from now, 20 years from now—you want them to think it was just completed yesterday.
4. Stay True to Yourself
Have you always wanted a marble bathtub? Dreamed of a walk-in shower with no door? Loved the authentic character of onyx tile? Go for it, go for it, go for it!
If you’ve heard about the benefits of steam, but you are not a fan of the crowded steam room at the gym, incorporate a steam shower into your master bath renovation.
A truly custom and unique bathroom will never go out of style. If you’re in love with the accent tile that was hand-painted in Milan, or the 16” rain shower head that transports you to a tropical rain forest every time you step beneath it, you’re likely to always carry that fondness.
If your personality can’t handle the natural irregularities in granite and marble, don’t use them in your bathroom. On the other hand, if you’re drawn to this unique character of natural stone, it’s a perfect way to create a truly one-of-a-kind design.
Jill Jefferson-Miller is the owner of Jefferson Bath and Kitchen, the experts in bath fixtures and maintenance with extensive experience remodeling bathrooms for over 30 years. View their profile or contact Jill at 609-924-0762.
Content for this article provided by Jefferson Bath and Kitchen.