What to Consider for a Bath Remodel

bathroom renovation calculator and planner

Aside from budget, the functionality of the bathroom to be remodeled is perhaps the most important factor. Assuming that you are already financially prepared for all the possible money that you may have to spend, the next factor to consider is the type of bathroom that you want to redo.

For homes with two or more bathrooms, each bathroom serves different functions and thus needs different layout, equipments, and furniture. If you plan to change your family bathroom, the first thing to consider should be its functionality, especially if you have children in the house. Because of children’s inherent clumsiness, most family baths are equipped with safety materials such as grabs and anti-slip mats. You should also consider the height of your vanity cabinet and sinks. Make sure that toiletries and toothbrushes are just within the reach of the children.

Redesigning the master bath is a different story. As opposed to family bathroom’s utilitarian layout, the master bathroom is where you can create your own personal bubble wherein you can slip in anytime you want. This is where you can infuse fashion and designs to create that dream bathroom that you have always wanted.

Couple looking tiled bathroom at store

Three-quarter baths provide basic comfort needs. The layout should focus on the toilet, shower, and sink. This kind of bath does not need intricate designs because people do not usually stay long in it. However, you can still infuse a bit of designs in your sink or flooring.

Half baths, on the other hand, is where a lot of people go into. It is often used as the powder room and so house guests are the most common users. Design your half-baths in such a way that it can accommodate several people. This will be useful when catering to parties or events that involve a lot of guests. You can also use this bath to impress your guests by paying attention to details in your sink, cabinets, and mirrors. Also, you can add furniture in case there is enough space. This will add a homey-feel that your guests will definitely love.

Another thing to consider is the people inside your house.  As mentioned above, children needs special considerations and though they will eventually grow, it will be easier for them and for you if things are within reach. The same considerations apply to the elderly.

Also consider how you are using your bathroom. Do you read while inside the tub? If so, you might have to consider placing a container for your magazines and books. Do you do your shaving inside the bath? If yes, you can improve the lighting wherever you do your ritual. If you are the type of person who loves to relax with the smell of candles, try to secure a place where you can light them safely. If you use your bathroom as a storage place for toiletries, towels, and first aid kits, make sure that enough cabinets are installed to carry all those.

When remodeling, try not to do all the planning at once. Keep in mind that once the fixtures are placed and the showers installed, it will be harder to change plans just because you realized that you want something else. Go into your bathroom everyday and list the things that you want to change. Ask yourself if you want to retain the things inside your bathroom or if you want to change them, what specific design should you get? You can also get ideas from your family members if you do not live alone. Discuss among yourselves the new layout, designs, placement of furniture, color, or if you want a particular theme.

Check out ‘Design Me’ for great design ideas. Click here.

The Chicago Bathroom Renovation Guide

What Remodeling Your Bathroom Can Do For Your Home

Remodeling a bathroom may seem to be a simple job at first but when you get to that situation, you will realize how it can be tiring and complicated. There are just so many things to consider and plan and it is kind of impossible to get through it without any help from others. This guide will provide you a bit of help that may be very useful in your remodeling project:

  • Always take into consideration what lies ahead in the future – it’s true that you can’t tell what the future may bring but there are things that will certainly happen like kids growing, you getting old, and the wear and tear of your bathroom surfaces and fixtures. Many accidents can happen inside the bath and so it is very wise to think of safety measures like installation of grabs and using less slippery tiles. This will come in handy when you reach the age past your prime or whenever you get sick. Also, pay attention to the durability of materials that you will use in a particular area. For example, porcelain is good on walls and floors but is not advisable for sinks since frequent use may cause chips on the porcelain cover. Instead, the use of stainless steel can prevent possible discolorations and chips.
  • Budget wisely – remodeling can be expensive and it’s okay to cut costs on some materials to limit your expenses. However, you must be generous on materials that are frequently used like showers, faucets, sinks, and toilets. Inexpensive materials with low quality will easily wear down and this will cause you to bring out more money.
  • Consider any possible cost and add some extra – it is easy to compute for the total cost of materials to be used but surely, unexpected expenses will arise. To give you an idea, installing a new showerhead in a different area will also require you to change your pipeline positioning. To do this, you need to open your walls and ceiling. This alone will cost you additional labor, new pipelines if needed, and of course new tiles to patch up the opened area.
  • Do not forget the lightings and vents – when remodeling, many of us prioritize the look and layout of our baths that we forget the essentials. A humid place provides good conditions for molds to grow and we don’t want them growing in between tiles, ceilings, and windows. That is why exhaust fans or vents are very important in a bathroom, especially when you have heaters. There are also sensors available that turns on or off depending on the air humidity. If you have extra budget, consider installing one in your bath.

bathroom interior in bright colors

As for lighting, many think that the bigger the bath, the more bulbs it need. However, adequate lighting depends on the number of divisions. A solo bulb can light a big room if it has no divisions while a single bulb in a small room with three areas will not be enough. Each area requires a bulb because light is obstructed by dividers or walls. Having vertical lights in your vanity area and cabinets is advisable.

  • Consider possible water consumption of the bathroom fixtures you want to add – there are several water-conserving products available now and using them will cut your bills in the future.
  • No matter what, do not rush the process – have a plan and review that plan three times or more. Take note of the smallest details from the ceiling, lights, walls, curtains, tiles, colors, sinks, cabinets, mirrors, tubs, and many other more. Try to imagine what your bath will look like after applying your ideas and have it sketched or drawn to give you a better insight before actually doing the remodeling.

The best advice we can give is do your research. Make sure to check out reviews of the Chicago contractors you’re thinking of using. For more tips, check out another bathroom guide here.


Budgeting for a Bathroom Remodel in Chicago

Budget for bathroom remodel in chicago

Are you thinking of remodeling a bathroom, and live in the Chicago area? Creating a budget for a bathroom remodel might be cause for alarm. According to Home Advisor, the average cost of a bathroom renovation for Chicago is around $9,230. Just thinking about the cost of your bathroom remodel can be scary and stressful. However, with some careful planning, you might be able to come up with ways to save money and eliminate some stress in the process.

Chicago cost of bathroom renovation
Image from Home Advisor

Before budgeting, understand the kinds of costs that come with remodeling your bathroom. Generally, contractors charge for labor, material, and potential mistakes made along the way. Therefore, when budgeting, make sure you include a cushion—account for any unplanned mistakes. Some recommend setting aside anywhere from 10% to 20% of your total budget. Research the general costs of remodels in your area while considering the value of your home and how long you are planning to stay there. Steven Moore of Budget Bath USA recommends spending 5% to 10% of your home’s value on your bathroom remodel. It is similarly important not to spend too little on your remodel. You wouldn’t want to budget for a $5,000 remodel only to find you have water damage or the job was done poorly.

Next, figure out how much you can reasonably spend on the project and where you will be getting that money from. Will you be taking out loans or pulling money from your personal savings? If you have planned out your budget only to find that you will be unable to afford the remodel, look for costs you might be able to cut down on. Don’t settle for cheap and less durable materials as this might end up costing you more money in the long term. Instead, look at the parts of your budget that are not completely necessary. Heated floors or a heated mirror, for instance, might be great ideas but aren’t essential and if your budget runs too high, these might be things to cut. Consider areas of your remodel in which you can save some money. Skylights are great ways to flood your bathroom with natural light and decrease some lighting installation costs. Painting your bathroom instead of having the contractors do it might take up some of your time but save you some money in labor costs. Another money-saving option is instructing contractors to only relocate fixtures if necessary. There are many of ways to cut back on your budget without actually risking any future issues or decreasing the functionality of your bathroom.

In closing, it is important while budgeting to include room for unexpected mistakes. Include luxuries if you can afford them but cut back on them if you can’t. When the remodel is underway, carefully track all of the expenses so that you can ensure you are staying within your budget. Planning a remodel doesn’t have to be stressful. Planning for and considering any potential problems will help you alleviate financial stress if you run into any obstacles along the way. Creating a successful budget will help you make important decisions and make your remodeling project run more smoothly!

What to Expect During a Bathroom Renovation

House remodeling with sketches

You’ve planned out your dream bathroom, you’ve chosen your contractor, your budget is all set, and now all you have to do is wait. Waiting sounds simple enough but, unfortunately, this can be one of the most nerve-racking parts of the remodeling process. Lucky for you, we have provided you with a simple guide of what to expect during your remodel. Getting your bathroom remodeled doesn’t have to be stressful and hopefully by reading through our guide you will gain a better idea of what to expect and how to plan accordingly. For more great ideas, check out some ideas here.

  1. Communicating with your contractor

Establishing a clear line of communication with your contractor is essential. This is your chance to make things as clear as possible to avoid any confusion. Not only will this allow you to communicate exactly what you want done during the remodel but this will help you clarify the timeline in which you expect different steps to be completed. You can also figure out your contract’s work schedule and your expectations in terms of cleanup, necessary materials, and their use of your house. Remember to keep a line of open communication with your contractor.

  1. Clear the way

Before your contractor begins, make sure the work area is cleared out and ready to go. Know that anything you leave in your bathroom could be potentially damaged in the remodel process. Therefore, clear out your bathroom beforehand. Especially be sure to remove any valuables or delicate items. Give your contractors plenty of room and provide a space for them to place any materials they might need.

  1. Noise, Mess, and Safety

Remodeling can be noisy and messy. Construction may create a lot of dust that will drift into other parts of your home. Be aware of this and put up plastic sheets to avoid the spread of dust. If you are concerned about the rest of your home getting dirty, consider placing down a tarp of some sort for the workers to walk on as they move in and out of your house.  If you have children or pets, keep them away from any materials or areas that may be hazardous, such as wires or power tools. Maintain a working toilet and sink for convenience. If you are concerned about any of these issues, you might consider staying in a hotel room or with friends if this is feasible during the remodel.

Considering Renovation

  1. Prepare yourself mentally

During construction, anything can happen. Your workers may find water damage or they may be out sick some day or run out of materials. Any of these things are unfortunate occurrences that might cause a delay in the process but you have to be prepared mentally should any of these things happen. Remember to remain calm. Remodeling does not always go smoothly and it will greatly ease your stress if you prepare for the unexpected. You might find your dream bathroom is not what you expected it to be and if this is the case, be sure to communicate this clearly to your contractor so that they can make any necessary changes. Here’s a great video on unforeseen bathroom renovation mistakes.

Remodeling might be terrifying as it contains a lot of uncertainties. Focus on what you can control during the process: your response and expectations. Creating a plan ahead of time will remove a lot of unnecessary and unhealthy stress form your life. Control your communication between workers to make sure they do the kind of job that will exceed your expectations!

How to Choose Bathroom Vanities, Cabinets and Storage

Modern bathroom vanity

We love the idea of having a cozy bathroom since it is a room for personal hygiene. It typically has a shower, bathtub, toilet, sink, storage and a bidet. Rules in choosing vanity bathrooms are not too much, it is the size that matters most. To get the creative juices flowing, check out some designs here.

Vanities for Powder Room

It is the smallest room, thus accommodating a small vanity. It is not commonly used for bathing, so the need to store bath towels, shampoos and the like are no longer needed. A sink by a counter top that is just at the right size is enough. Being sure that there is enough room in accessing the toilet is necessary. Frameless vanities are simple and have a contemporary look – no frame and does are hung directly on the side of the cabinet. You have to be certain that there is enough space for drawers and doors to open.

You can also complement its style among the public rooms of the house. Pedestal sinks may not work well since there is no enough counter space. You would lose storage space not unless you have enough room for one.

Vanities for Guest Bathroom

In a guest bathroom, which might be used by teenagers or children, the vanity should be big enough to hold clutter and contain daily bathing essentials. Regardless of who consumes this space, opt for drawers under the sink since cabinets may not be a good idea. A 60-inch vanity would be a better idea in holding two sinks and other necessities may be stored in a linen closet.

For a guest bathroom, you just need to put the basic needs. Having a designated place for keeping hair dryers and cosmetics should you have guests that are teens. A floating vanity would also be a worthy choice since it opens up a compact bathroom and allowing an increased storage.

bathroom interior in bright colors

Vanities for Master Bathroom

This will be used for the parents and is the hub for daily bathing as it is often called as an extension to a home’s master bedroom. This is usually placed next to the master bedroom.

Having enough space for storage and having two sinks are of vital importance, but you have to consider who will be using it. Two people will be using this usually, so you have to design this room for co-use starting from the storage, accessories, linens and other bathroom needs. You may try matching the design of your bedroom, but doesn’t necessarily need to match.


Proper lighting is essential for whatever vanity you are opting for. It is usually placed over the sink or the mirror, but be sure that it will cast the shadows on your face.

A sconce will be a good choice since this type of light fixture affixed to a wall directs the light upwards which is a good choice for bathroom lighting. Overhead lights are essential for delivering a bright and clear view inside a bathroom avoiding insufficient lighting. Strip lights uses LED so you picking from a variety is a necessity – colors, lengths and intensities. Shower lights must be waterproof that would illuminate up a stand –up shower.

Bathroom vanities should be mixed with innovation, and has a great value for bathroom storage. You may choose cabinets, cupboards and shelves with style but meet your needs at the same time. Need help organizing? Check out this great resource.