Recouping Your Investment: Budget-Conscious Design Decisions
A great deal of the value of your home is tied up in the bathroom. It’s one of the most important rooms for anyone looking to add value, whether you’re looking to sell or make improvements that offer the best return on investment. Not surprisingly, it’s easy to drop tens of thousands of dollars on a bathroom remodel. Tile and fixtures alone can quickly put you in the four-figure range. According to Remodeling Magazine, the average cost of a bathroom remodel is about $10,500, however it doesn’t account for the high cost of labor. Fortunately, an impactful renovation can be done for $1,000 or less. An effective bathroom upgrade can earn you up to 80 percent on your investment. So, if value and ROI are important to you — as they should be to anyone trying to follow a budget — consider the following tips on how to derive the highest value for the least cost.
Material costs comprise a great deal of your remodeling budget. To get maximum ROI from your investment, it’s important to look for ways to save on materials. As you do, watch for online savings and cashback offers from retailers such as Home Depot. Keep in mind that materials aren’t your only expense. The cost of labor can get pretty high, so be sure to get a bid from several companies for each project you plan on doing in order to get the best price.
Adding a fresh new coat of paint is one of the most cost-conscious, budget-friendly improvements you can make in any room. It’s an excellent decision from an ROI standpoint because it’s relatively inexpensive, and it’s a room that enables you to go bold or neutral with color. However, the bathroom is one of the hardest rooms in the house to paint well. There’s plenty of room for error — wall space is limited compared to other rooms — and there’s a washstand, bathtub, mirrors, switchplates, and door frames to be concerned with so make sure you know what you’re doing. A bathroom isn’t a good candidate for your first do-it-yourself project, and bear in mind that moisture, a major factor in any bathroom, and paint don’t always go well together, so invest in a high-quality satin paint that’s mold-resistant. To help keep the price of paint within your budget, keep an eye out for sales and coupons at retailers such as Sherwin-Williams to cut down on costs.
Putting in new fixtures — including new faucet handles, cabinet knobs and towel racks — may seem like a fairly minor, insignificant change, but it’s an improvement that can make a bathroom look like new. You might also consider replacing your mirror, which can be a prominent design element. A new sink and washstand are also affordable ways to make a significant improvement. If you’re into something really bold that you can do yourself, consider reusing a chest of drawers by turning it into a kitchen sink and washstand. Cut out space on top for the sink and cut holes in back for the plumbing and voila — you’ve got a rehabbed chest of drawers/kitchen sink. If you’ve shopped for fixtures, you know that prices can get pretty steep. To help alleviate those costs, use money-saving sites like RetailMeNot to bring those numbers back down to earth.
Caulk and Grout
The grout and caulk in a bathroom get dirty and slimy over time, which is unattractive. What’s more, the accumulation of mold represents a human health hazard. Cleaning helps, but it’s not enough to get the fresh, clean new look you’re going for. For just a few dollars, you can replace the grout and caulk and make the entire room look great. It’s painstaking work but the final product will be well worth the effort. There are plenty of tutorials available online, but if it looks too difficult or messy, consider hiring a pro.
Tasteful Use of Tile
Tile is one of the most expensive materials you can buy. It looks great, but making widespread use of it won’t do your budget much good. As such, consider using it sparingly as a way to accentuate your overall design. Make the space work for you by tiling just one horizontal strip along the middle of a wall and simply paint the rest.
As you budget, purchase materials, and plan your design, bear in mind that an effective remodel depends on making the greatest impact with the least investment. Make minimal but strategic use of pricey materials, such as tile, and maximize more cost-effective strategies, like painting. If you’re diligent and determined to get the most out of your investment, it’s entirely possible to come up with a brand new look for $1,000 or less.
Image courtesy of Pixabay.com