Post by Stacey Walker. Stacey mostly works behind the scenes for Walker Woodworking, managing day to day operations, and marketing. Stacey has helped many clients create their dream space.

A Bathroom Renovation Budget Guide

While it is fun to gather inspiration pictures from Pinterest and jot down your favorite design pieces from the latest HGTV show, a bathroom renovation project should begin with a budget. To budget is to have a plan in place for where and how you want your money spent. It is one of the most important pieces in the renovation plan and helps guide the project. We get asked multiple questions on this topic that include:

  • How do you know what is a good budget?
  • What is included in a bathroom remodel budget?
  • How to decide what I want vs. what I need?
  • Should I hire a contractor?
  • Do I need a contingency fund?

One of our first objectives in a design meeting is to establish a budget for the entire bathroom project which could include cabinets, flooring, hardware, and fixtures. This budget will set the tone for the entire project and enable us to know exactly what products to show you. In this blog, we will share what a good bathroom renovation budget should include and a general estimate for a total.

How much does it cost to remodel a bathroom?

It can be difficult to give a specific number for a bathroom renovation budget since each space is unique but typically you should budget around $100 to $200 per square foot of the space. The following is a broad estimate for these spaces but remember that it can change depending on what materials and features you chose to include in your renovation project.

Even though they are smaller than a kitchen, a bathroom renovation can be from $10,000 to $50,000, because they present a higher cost per square foot. The difference in price is due to the elements involved in the renovation including plumbing, moisture content, and electrical wiring. If you want to change the layout of the bathroom by moving the toilet or even the sink, this will expand the budget. Design options, such as tile and flooring, also play a factor in the price. Our experienced designers can assist you in creating a budget that is the right fit, just one of the many benefits of hiring a designer. Read more of the benefits here.

Design options – Needs v. Wants

Before diving into a bathroom renovation project, homeowners need to decide which amenities they absolutely need vs. what they want. Every good renovation project begins with a detailed list, a list with all of the things you are looking for or wanting to do in your upcoming bathroom renovation. Some things that come to mind are mirrors, storage, and aesthetics. All of these may be necessary for a bathroom, but the complexity of these will drive the budget. It is important to have this list so that you and your designer can properly divide the budget to include these items. Some things you may want to include during your budget planning session:

  • Tile: This can include backsplash, accent tiles, flooring, and shower.
  • Flooring: Are you looking for a particular pattern or material such as laminate or hardwood. How about one that is easy maintenance?
  • Fixtures: Do you need hardware, lighting, or faucets?

Remember you can always revise as you go, this is for the initial planning phase, but it is good to have a rough idea of what you want to spend for the renovation.

Should I have a contingency fund?

Most agree that 5% to 10% of the overall renovation budget should be set aside to cover any unforeseen emergencies. Even with the best of plans, unexpected problems can arise during a renovation so it is best to have a contingency fund in place which will ensure that your bathroom project will still be completed.

Did you remember the fees?

When setting up your initial renovation budget it is easy to forget about installation, shipping, and taxes. These costs need to be factored into the renovation budget so that you can know what will be available to spend on the actual product like tile, flooring, and hardware.

What about that extra splurge?

It is tempting during a renovation to want to indulge and get a few extras, but we would caution you to think through which ones will give you the most value and benefit you and your family. Some choices to consider:

  • Do you want to upgrade both your tub and shower? Consider which one you will use most and enjoy more. Bathroom renovations must always consider “aging in place”, for future use.
  • Considering tile over laminate flooring? Decide if the flooring is among the top items on your list.
  • Are you wanting unique hardware and fixtures like a brass shower head? These items can provide nice statement pieces in your space.

Talk with your designer about which options are the most important so that they can help you plan out a realistic bathroom budget.

Let’s get started

Creating a budget can make you feel overwhelmed and drag you down with all of the little details but that is where we can help. At Walker Woodworking, we specialize in assisting our clients in writing down what their specific needs are and then help in creating a budget that accomplishes these goals. We have a bathroom checklist for our clients, that will help determine the budget as well as the timeline. Call today to schedule an appointment and let’s get started on making your bathroom renovation dreams come true.