The Ultimate Bathroom Remodel Checklist

The number of bathroom remodels in 2020 increased by 50{5ab75762cf707683d7af2475431dd95a23fbc9cf5cb8a45517116f350cf35bde} from the year before. Cleary, bathroom remodels are high on the list of priorities for homeowners across America right now!

If you’re thinking of remodeling your own bathroom, you might not know where to start. Sure, you could hire someone else to do everything from the planning to the execution, but what if you want to have more of a say in the new design?

With our bathroom remodel checklist, you can. We’re here to walk you through the step-by-step process that you can follow no matter the size or extent of your bathroom remodel.

Read on to find out how to approach this room renovation process.

Set a Budget and Remodel Scale

Before you start making any major decisions, you need to set a realistic budget. The last thing you want is to dive into a major remodel only to realize that you don’t have the funds to finish what you started.

To do a full bathroom remodel, which entails replacing every fixture and possibly even moving your internal plumbing, expect to pay upwards of $15,000. If you want to replace fixtures without changing the existing plumbing, you can probably come up with a plan in the $7,000-$10,000 range. The good news is that even if you only have $1,000 or less to play with, you can still make cosmetic changes (like repainting or replacing one major fixture) that will have a huge impact. 

Take Thorough Measurements

As you make decisions about fixtures, cabinetry, and so forth, you need to know what kind of space you’re working with. Make sure that you take thorough measurements and draft a schematic of what your bathroom looks like now and how you want it to look in the future.

It’s helpful to have measurements of your existing fixtures and cabinetry. This will help you get a more realistic sense of how larger or smaller pieces will look in the room.

Evaluate Your Existing Pipes and Make Plumbing Decisions

Your shower, tub, sink, and toilet are all, of course, connected to the plumbing. Why is this something to keep in mind as you plan your remodel?

Full remodels may involve moving fixtures into new areas. In order to, for example, install a tub in a new space, you will also need someone to redo the plumbing. If this is outside of your budget (or your timeline), simply plan to hook up new fixtures to existing pipes.

Brainstorm Design Inspirations

Websites like Pinterest make it easy to put together a digital inspiration board. You can also find inspiration on design websites or by talking with any contractors you intend to work with.

Think about the school of design, if any, that you intend to evoke in your new bathroom. Perhaps you’re drawn toward the arches and gilding of Art Deco or the soft textures of Scandinavian design. No matter your inspiration, take the time to immerse yourself in it before investing in the materials for your new bathroom.

Supply Your New Bathroom Fixtures

Once you have a design style in mind and know where you want to go, it’s time to start sourcing your pieces. Start with the most expensive or largest pieces, including:

If you’re working with a tight budget, it’s helpful to come up with a list of “must-haves” and “nice-to-haves.” In other words, which fixtures are you determined to replace and which ones can you keep for the sake of your budget if necessary?

Make Cabinetry and Storage Choices

Next, think about what tends to be the second-most expensive pieces in a bathroom remodel: your cabinetry and storage solutions. Do you want closed or open shelving? Will your mirrors hide more storage space or will you source mirrors that sit directly on the wall? Where will you store your linens and extra toiletries such as toilet paper, shampoo, and soap?

There are plenty of ways to maximize bathroom storage without breaking the bank. Baskets and stackable bins can help you make use of open closets or open floor space without having to build or buy new cabinetry.

Select Your Lighting

You may be surprised at how much your lighting can make or break your bathroom remodel. In a bathroom, you want lighting options that are ambient and relaxing but that also make tasks like shaving or putting on makeup simple. 

Make sure that your lighting aligns with your overall design. Don’t overlook things like the type of metal used in your light fixtures and make sure that they match your faucets.

Pick Your Tile, Trim, and Paint

The final step is in our bathroom remodel checklist is to pick your tile, trim, and paint (or wallpaper). Why do we recommend following this remodeling tip last? You can find these materials at a wide variety of price points, so it’s easy to make choices that align with your remaining budget.

Don’t have the money or time to devote to all new tile? Simply repainting your untiled walls will really change the entire vibe of your bathroom.

Use This Bathroom Remodel Checklist to Design Your Dream Bathroom

When you’re dreaming of a bathroom remodel, it’s not always easy to know how to turn that dream into a reality. With our bathroom remodel checklist, you can take the process one step at a time without overlooking any of the things you need to do.

Looking for more helpful tips to make your house into a dream home? Take a look around as we discuss real estate, remodeling, maintenance, and beyond.