Whether you’re a ‘do-it-yourselfer’ or you’re happy letting the professionals handle it, the spring is an excellent time to remodel the bathroom. Before you begin, understand that remodeling a bathroom is no small task. Unless you are replacing a cabinet or changing out a faucet or sink, it would be wise to consider consulting a professional. There is too much at stake, if the decision is to tackle a full-on bathroom remodel. Here are a number of things to consider:
Space: Is the bathroom staying in it’s current footprint or is there the possibility of expansion, which will require walls being torn down and plumbing having to be moved.
Hidden secrets: Hopefully, the existing bathroom was buttoned up, so water drained appropriately and standing water couldn’t find places to hide. There is always the possibility that as you start removing old shower stalls, bath tubs, tiles or other surfaces, that water might have penetrated the sub-structure.
Storage: Is storage going to come from free-standing shelves or exist underneath the sink or in a separate closet? No matter how small or large, this area typically gets filled up pretty quickly.
Privacy: Let’s face it, sometimes people are bashful, so if you’re thinking about a shower enclosure, it might need to be opaque. The loo may also need to be walled off for additional privacy.
Growing Old: Aging in place is critical, so you have to think about if you want a bath tub or a shower. If the choice is a tub, how accessible is it. If it a shower, thresholds need to be eliminated and it needs to be big enough for seating. Grab bars need to be considered and hand held showers are a must.
Too Tub or Not Too Tub: Tubs can take up a fair amount of space, but they provide a place of refuge from life’s daily challenges.
The Right Height for Accessories: Decide where to put things early on so that you can add extra blocking where needed before finishing the walls.
Speaking of Accessories: Again, another part of the project that is an afterthought. Accessories can add a beautiful finished look to any bathroom setting, so remember to leave ample room for hooks, towel bars, a toilet paper holder, mirrors, a medicine cabinet, soap holders, knobs & pulls and a cup/toothbrush holder.
Think Water Preservation: Most of the new toilets have the capacity to do the job with less water and are WaterSense approved. Shower heads also have the ability to restrict water flow and preserve this precious resource.
Surfaces: Tile, wood, paint, granite, laminates, glass mosaics and bead board are all considerations for surfaces. Most surfaces will need to be sealed to prevent damage from water. There are specialized paints used for damp or wet areas like a bathroom. You also need to consider how these surfaces will be cleaned.
Lighting: Lighting can be broken down into four types: task, accent, decorative and sparkle. Lighting fixtures can create varied moods to the bathroom setting.
Proper ventilation: Choosing the proper ventilation can be the difference between keeping your surfaces free of water vapor or having lots of drip marks. Exhausting odors is also a major consideration.
Creature comforts: Perhaps, you like your tootsies to be warm when you step into the bathroom or you like a warm towel when your drying off. A bathroom can also feature wet heat via a steam system or dry heat via a sauna. These creature comforts are nice to haves.