Preparing to remodel any part of your home can be a daunting thought, and the process can be stressful. Here are some steps you can follow so stress is just a fleeting thought.
Step 1 – Measure twice cut once
First you need to measure the existing bathroom to know what space you have to play with. You can’t have a bathroom with a toilet and bathtub if there isn’t space for both. The only way to find out what fits, and where, is to measure. Maybe you want to expand your bathroom to fit both the shower and the tub, you’ll need to measure the rooms to either side and decide what wall where works best, which brings us to step 2.
Step 2 – Where does this go?
I find it best to use graph paper to figure what can fit, and where. This allows you to visualize what the final product will look like. Have each square equal so many inches; if you have them equal something like a foot, when putting in things like the toilet, it’s easy for those things to disappear because then they are microscopic and easily overlooked.
I like to draw the walls on one sheet and use a few other sheets to cut out the items in the bathroom such as the toilet and the tub. This lets you move things around freely and see how things work in different arrangements. When you find a layout you like, you can either take a picture and continue moving things around, or tape them down and use additional sheets to start over again. (I like taking a picture of the layout because it allows me to save time from creating multiple copies of each item.)
Also, for starters, use the measurements of your current, tub, toilet, and sink area. If you’d like a bigger tub, look for some extra space between items.
Something to consider are the door(s) in and out of the bathroom. The door needs room to swing so you can get through the doorway. A tip, is when drawing the walls of your bathroom, draw a quarter circle in the direction the door swings.
Also, don’t forget about the plumbing. A contractor will know enough that they can help with this if you’re hiring one. If doing the remodel yourself, consider how the pipes will have to fit through the walls, floors, and ceilings to get items where you want. There are existing pipes, and wires in the walls already, and the plumbing may not be able to go where you want.
Step 3 – Ka-ching!
Before you go breaking down walls, and moving toilets for real, you need to budget out what you can afford to spend, and what you need to spend. What do I mean by need to spend? The floor in our bathroom is not currently supported properly under the toilet and it is slowly falling to the floor below. We discovered this after an overflowing toilet, made a waterfall in the room below. The floor will need to be replaced when we actually do our remodel. We need to replace the floor, it’s not something we necessarily want to do.
It also helps to walk down the aisles of your local hardware store and look at prices for countertops, tubs, toilets, etc. You’ll find you may not be able to afford that real stone countertop, but find another alternative that is more affordable.
Step 4 – The Waiting Game
You may need to wait to do the remodel until you have enough set aside to cover what you want and need to do. This isn’t a bad thing, and the wait will be well worth it.
You will also need to wait for certain items. The vanity you want may be a special order and could take a week or two, depending on the manufacturer and how quickly they can get it out to you or your local store for pick up. Try to time things so they arrive when you need them. If you are hiring a contractor they will worry about this for you. Another option is to buy a little at a time. Buy a toilet this month, and a sink next month. This way your wallet won’t take a big hit all at once.
Step 5 – Let’s Do This!
Now you are ready to start remodeling your bathroom. Be ready for those last minute surprises. No remodel goes absolutely perfect.