Remodeling Your Bath On A Tight Budget (By Holly Thorne)

Mother Nature threw us a bone this past weekend with spring-like weather, moving our thoughts away from fire-lit evenings to those of firing up the grill. While now is the time to consider cleaning gutters, pressure washing your siding, and planting grass, how about that one room inside that you blocked off during the holidays. The one that you journeyed guests upstairs and through your bedroom just to avoid? Yes, that outdated bathroom. It is still there, with the peeling linoleum floor, calcium deposits and old-fashioned countertops, just waiting for attention.

While you may think a bathroom renovation is not in the budget, the good news is small spaces don’t need to cost a fortune to update.  This Old House estimates DIYers can update this space, adding value to your home, for as little as $1,000 depending on the projects you want to undertake.

To freshen up your space on the cheap, consider the following tips gathered from around the web:

  1. Use tile sparingly, sticking to high-impact areas like the floor, using instead high quality satin-finish paint to avoid mold and mildew, or by incorporating other materials in hidden areas like the shower.
  2. If granite is your choice for countertops, widen your color options to save on the expense of this season’s most popular colors or look at imperfect countertops that the sink basin will cover. White is always a classic color choice that goes with everything and gives you freedom to play with paint color or seasonal linen changes.
  3. Update light fixtures, sink faucets, showerheads, towel racks, and drawer pulls. These relatively small investments can provide big bang for their buck. Water-efficient fixtures will help you save money in the long run and are also good for the environment, too.
  4. Pay attention to detail. Updating window treatments, bath linens, re-caulking the tubs or adding a fresh coat of white paint to moldings can make quite a difference.
  5. Make it your own. Be on trend by buying used dressers or overstocked plumbing features from yard sales, flea markets, Etsy, eBay, or your local retailer. You can build your own vanity or construct unique towel racks at a fraction of the cost and make your remodeled space completely you own.
  6. Don’t be afraid of sweat equity. Minor projects can be done over a weekend but remember to call in a professional if structural changes, complicated electrical or plumbing work is required.

As warmer weather draws us out of hibernation, spending a little bit of time on your bathroom now will prevent you from detouring guests during summer cookouts, and even better, will be one less thing you have to worry about once the holidays roll around again.

If your bathroom is an eyesore, share your photos for a chance to win a $1,000 gift certificate to Valley retailer, Randy’s Do It Best Hardware, sponsored by Farmers & Merchants Bank and VBS Mortgage.

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