What Is a Realistic Bathroom Remodel Budget?
Approximately 70% of people made plans to completely renovate their bathrooms in 2021. Many people were stuck at home during this time, thanks to social distancing and stay-at-home guidelines.
It makes sense that renovating a space you were liable to spend even more time in was people’s priority at the time. If you weren’t one of the various people remodeling a bathroom, you might wonder what their budgets were.
The pandemic was a rough time for people. Surely, homeowners couldn’t have had much of a bathroom renovation budget? You’d be surprised how much the average homeowner has squirreled away for rainy day funds.
Keep reading if you’d like to know what renovating your bathroom would realistically cost and how people manage during the pandemic. We’ll also discuss ways to save on your home improvement project.
What Determines A Realistic Bathroom Remodel Budget?
Remodeling a bathroom isn’t exactly a cheap project, even at its least expensive. It’s typical for homeowners to spend 5% to 10% of their house’s overall value to renovate their bathroom.
Here’s how you can expect the distribution of funds to look:
- Installation – 20%
- Hardware and cabinetry – 16%
- Fixtures – 15%
- Faucets and plumbing – 14%
- Flooring – 9%
- Countertops – 7%
- Ceilings and walls – 5%
- Design costs – 4%
- Windows and doors – 4%
- Other bathroom items – 1%
Most of your funds will ensure everything is installed correctly. Getting a renovation is pointless if nothing works the way it should or looks terrible.
While we’re on the subject of correct installation – find a contractor once you’ve settled the renovation budget. If you have extensive DIY skills or a willingness to follow directions and learn, you can try renovations solo.
However, it’s not uncommon for many people to realize they don’t have the ability to DIY their dream bathrooms into existence and end up having to call a contractor anyway.
On top of spending plenty of money to ruin their bathrooms, these people have to pay more to the contractor to fix what they’ve messed up. Please keep in mind that there will be a separate cost for materials and labor.
Always ask the contractor for a “materials and labor” quote. You should shop around for cheap materials also.
The “basic” bathroom home improvement project is the cheapest project of its type. “Basic,” in this instance, means small. The less area they’re renovating, the less the cost of bath remodeling homeowners have.
The lowest you’ll spend on a home improvement project like this is two grand.
The average cost of bathroom remodeling is about $5,000, but some projects can reach as much as $19,000. What you pay largely depends on what you’re trying to do.
Keep It Cheap: Use What You Have
One way to stay on the lower end of the price scale is to keep the layout the same. Moving plumbing and light fixtures gets costly because it involves a lot of extra plumbing and electrical work.
You’ll also pay to move cabinets, the toilet, shower, and tub. A small bathroom can cost a lot to renovate if you rearrange the layout.
Keeping your original cabinets and fixtures (like handles and faucets) helps save money also. If they’re in good condition, but you want a new look, consider refurbishing them instead.
Refurbishing bathroom cabinets cost about $0.60 per square foot. You can pay anywhere between $930 for a 120-square-foot project, but prices can reach about $1,200. Getting new cabinetry may cost as much as $5,000.
Here’s what you can expect to spend for basic bathroom renovations:
- Tub – $3,000 to $4,000
- Cabinets – $2,500 to $5,000
- Countertops – $2,500 to $4,500
- Flooring – $1,500 to $3,500
- Lighting – $550 to $1,500
- Shower- $1,500 to $3,500
- Sink – $500 to $1,500
- Toilet – $250 to $750
- Paint – $550 to $1,500
- Trendy embellishments (like tile work) – $50 to $500
As you can see, the bathtub alone can cost about as much as the average you’d spend on an entire renovation. Many people have nest eggs saved during the pandemic, which allowed them to accommodate these costs.
People typically save at least $500 to $5,000 for rainy day funds for home improvement projects or other things they’d like to do.
That said, if you want a high-end “basic’ bathroom, you should prepare to spend some serious money.
Mid-range, in this context, means larger bathrooms where you’re doing a wholesale bathroom replacement, but everything stays in the same spot.
A good bathroom remodel budget for mid-range projects is $25,500 to $35,500. Mid-range bathroom remodels have bigger budgets to accommodate more luxurious installations.
For example, you can have heated floors, updated tile work, or low-flow faucets and toilets. Here’s a list of what to expect materials for a mid-range bathroom to cost:
- Bathtub – $3,500 to $5,500
- Cabinets- $5,500 to $8,500
- Countertops- $3,500 to $5,500
- Flooring – $2,500 to $5,500
- Lighting – $1,500 to $2,500
- Shower – $3,500 to $6,500
- Sink – $1,500 to $3,500
- Toilet – $550 to $850
- Paint – $500 to $2,500
Remember, you’re splurging for more luxurious items in a mid-range bathroom renovation. The prices of everything compared to a basic renovation would increase substantially.
As for the lack of “trendy embellishment” pricing, it’s already implied that mid-range home improvement would already have trendy embellishments added into the cost.
Deluxe bathrooms (or master bathrooms) are bigger rooms designed with more than function in mind. While mid-range bathrooms may have a few luxury items, deluxe baths are all about luxury and relaxation.
Here’s the general cost to outfit your deluxe bathroom:
- Bathtub – $6,500 to $10,500
- Cabinets – $8,500 to $15,500
- Countertops – $5,500 to $7,500
- Flooring – $5,000 to $7,500
- Lighting – $2,500 to $4,500
- Shower – $6,500 to $10,500
- Sink – $3,500 to $5,500
- Toilet – $550 to $950
- Paint – $1,000 to $2,500
Deluxe bathroom remodeling can cost $45,000 or more, depending on what you want. Take the price of bathtubs, for example. If you want a romantic two-seater tub, you’ll spend approximately $3,000 to $10,000.
A whirlpool and air jet combination tub can alternate between water and air jets—tubs like this range from $4,000 to $11,000+. A high-end luxury walk-in tub starts a $15,000 and can cost as much as $20,000.
$20,000 gets you aromatherapy, curved backrests, heated seats, etc. We’re probably not in the realm of “realistic” for most people anymore, but if you’ve got money to spare, you’re welcome to your deluxe bath.
Many build bathrooms with “wet areas,” which are precisely what they sound like – areas waterproofed so they can get wet. Wet areas include the tub, shower, and the walls around this space.
Wet areas are often the priciest part of remodeling a bathroom. Rearranging your layout or modifying plumbing adds a lot to the cost of wet areas. How long it takes to complete a wet area depends on what you have done.
Adding a liner or refurbishing the tub takes a few hours. Shower-to-tub conversions or turning a large part (or all) of your bathroom into a wet room may take a few days or weeks.
Large-scale conversions take so long because they involve demolition. The overall cost for wet areas (or rooms) is $11,000 to $18,000. The tub alone can run $500 to $5,000, excluding labor costs.
If you want a new shower, prefabricated models are the cheapest because they come premade with everything you’d need for installation. Prefabricated models are also easy to DIY install.
You’ll pay at least $520 for a prefab shower. Professionally installing a new shower is much more expensive at about ten grand. You’re paying for new tiling and replumbing, among other requirements.
The average price to install bathroom plumbing during renovation is $2,000 to $10,000. These prices differ from what we provided earlier for bathtubs, showers, and sinks because they focus on the fixture cost.
These fees are specifically for how much it costs to install plumbing for said fixtures. Most homeowners pay to install toilets, sinks, faucets, and a combined shower and bath combo are about $5,300.
Five grand is about mid-price for a bathroom plumbing project. You can get away with paying as little as $700 for half-bath plumbing on the low end of the scale.
Larger-scale plumbing may cost as much as $15,900. The costs may include double sinks, shower stall, whirlpool bathtub, and high-end vanity.
How You Can Save Money On Bathroom Remodeling
As you may have gathered, bathroom replacement and renovation are costly. Even at its cheapest, renovating your bathroom will take a lot of money. But there are a few ways to can save on remodeling funds.
We mentioned earlier that keeping the layout the same and reusing (and refurbishing) fixtures you already have can help save money. Keep reading, and we’ll share other money-saving tips with you.
Research Brands and Products
It’s a general rule to never go into a project without being unknowledgeable and unprepared. Some products and brands will cost more than others – especially higher-end items.
One tip to save money on your home improvement project is researching what brands and products will cost less. Outfitting your space with all high-end items will significantly increase your budget.
More expensive things can cost you anywhere from $15,000 to $20,000. Opting for cheaper fixtures can decrease your budget from 15 grand to five to seven grand.
Don’t Spend More on Storage Than Necessary
If you don’t need fancy, built-in storage, don’t bother. You can use open shelves or reuse other furniture for your bathroom storage. Remember, high-end cabinetry can cost over eight grand in a mid-range bathroom.
Think of it this way, reused furniture often adds character to rooms. Reusing furniture also allows you to save an item you may have otherwise had no place for elsewhere in your home.
Choose Flooring Carefully
Stone and tile floors look great in bathrooms, but they can also take a large chunk of your bathroom remodel budget. Laminate floors are among the cheapest you can buy for any room.
You may spend $2.70 to $11 per square foot on laminate floors. Meanwhile, granite floors can cost $6 to $22 per square foot. Both floors are water-resistant, so why spend more when it isn’t necessary?
Consider Shopping on Amazon
You don’t have to go into an expensive brick-and-mortar store to purchase materials for your home renovation. Amazon has an excellent supply of faucets, storage, and cabinetry hardware.
Shopping online is often cheaper because of various online deals and waived shipping fees. It’s also generally more affordable to manage an online store than a physical one, which translates into cheaper customer costs.
Don’t Spend So Much On the Shower and Tub
Fiberglass prefabricated showers are much cheaper than custom-installed units. We said earlier that you could purchase a prefab unit for a little over $500.
A tile tub can cost around $1,300. The prefab model will save you at least $800. You don’t have to get a new tub either. If your current one is in good enough condition, consider refinishing or reglazing the fixture.
Consider Salvage Items
Salvage warehouses are a home renovator’s friend. One thing you can find at a salvage warehouse is a high-end vanity. These vanities are usually marked down because of minor damage, like scratching.
It’s common to see a high-end product and receive as much as a 40% mark down because of a cosmetic issue that’s barely noticeable. You might also find storage and other fixtures inside a salvage warehouse.
DIY Install Fixtures
If you’re willing to install your own faucets and showerhead, you can save a bit of money on your bathroom renovation. Most plumbers charge at least $100 to install one sink faucet.
People with enough confidence in their skills may want to opt for DIY. You can find plenty of resources online to help with installation.
Unsure How Much Remodeling a Bathroom Costs?
The average you’ll pay to remodel your bathroom is about $5,000. But that’s for smaller, basic bathrooms with minor trendy embellishments. A realistic bathroom remodel budget for a deluxe bath is $45,000 or more.
The cost of your bathroom remodeling depends on what you want inside your bathroom. For example, a luxury walk-in tub can cost as much as $20,000.
If you’re unsure how much remodeling a bathroom costs, visit Kwote Advisor’s website today! We can get you free quotes from various suppliers in your area.