What do you want your new bathroom to look like, traditional or more contemporary? What specific elements do you like, mosaic tile, antique brass fixtures, or maybe a free standing vanity? Creating an idea book on Houzz.com (free membership) is an easy way to keep all your inspiration photos organized. Make sure to note what specific element you like about each picture. http://www.houzz.com/
Working with a design build firm will save you time and energy. They will help you design your dream bathroom and execute the remodel for you. It’s a one stop shop. Find a qualified remodeler from your local NARI (National Association of the Remodeling Industry) chapter website. Visit, http://www.nari.org/industry/join/find-a-chapter/
Bathrooms and kitchens are the most expensive rooms in your home. They simply have more going on. In the DC Metro Area a full remodel on a standard 5’x7’ bathroom averages around $25,000. Larger master baths can climb even higher. The materials you select and the layout you choose will have a huge impact on the cost of your project. Let your designer know what you can afford from the start so they can recommend a design and materials that fit your budget.
Work with your designer to layout the perfect bathroom. Should the toilet be in a separate water closet or hidden behind a pony wall? Should you have a tub and shower, a combination or maybe just a shower? There are a lot of decisions to be made. Remember, anytime you move or add a plumbing line the budget will go up.
Before you go too far into design and start selecting fixtures and finishes, bring in the experts. Have a plumber and electrician come out to your home and review your existing and future needs. Remodeling is much more complicated than new construction. There is the potential for many unknowns hidden within your walls, and the older your home the more you will find. Bringing in the experts early will help to identify some of the more obvious ones like an over loaded electrical panel or copper pipes with pin hole leaks.
There are so many options! This is where your inspiration photos will come in handy. Share them with your designers so they can help to narrow down your choices. They can show you their recommendation in their showroom or at local suppliers. Ferguson has great showrooms across the country. Appointments are preferred so make sure to schedule one and visit, https://www.ferguson.com/connectShowroom
Once your design is set it’s time to sign the contract. Make sure your contractor has a complete contract with details and plans. A contract should outline each element of your project down to the materials being used. It should include a minimum 2 year warranty (Maryland) and a residential building permit application (this is required anytime a wall is opened). If your home was built before 1971 it should also include a lead paint affidavit. At this point your contractor will likely ask for a deposit. In Maryland it is illegal to accept more than a 30% deposit up front. Asking for more should be a huge red flag.
The “Job Start” is the most exciting moment … until it happens. Demo is messy and loud, but don’t let it dampen your spirits. Prepare for obstacles. Maybe your subfloor will need to be replaced or the toilet you selected will be on back order. This is just the nature of the business. There are so many moving parts not everything can be anticipated. If you are working with an experienced team this will feel like hiccups. They will have a plan to keep your project moving.
Just about the time you are tired of living in a home under construction, you enter the home stretch. Watching it all come together can be fun. Your bathroom will go from a complete disaster zone to drywalled and clean. Then before you know it you’ll have a beautiful new bath to enjoy. The finishing touches are what make the space yours. Enjoy all your hard work and patience in your new bath!