Remodeling a Bathroom on a Budget

When you’re remodeling a bathroom in your first property flip, here are some tips for staying on budget.

Before you start remodeling a bathroom, keep in mind that this isn’t going to be your home. You’re going to either flip it to a new buyer or you may be renting it out. So you want it to look appealing to a wide audience.

It doesn’t have to look like it came out of a Home and Gardens Magazine, but it needs to look clean and inviting while staying on budget.

Remember, if your buyer decides to live in it, they may want to redo it anyway to fit their own tastes, so it’s best to do the job quickly and not overdo it.

Keep it clean and neat and relatively modern so that the new homeowner really won’t want to do anything to it but add their own colors for the décor.

I like what the investor did with this small bathroom remodel. It’s perfect!

Remodeling a Bathroom – First Things First

Before you start, take a few photos of what the room already looks like. For investors, you can add before and after shots to your portfolio.

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For homeowners, it’s just fun to look back on what the room looked like before you got started. We’ve renovated our main bathroom twice and our lower level bathroom once. I wished we’d taken photos but we didn’t think about that.

Take Measurements and Make a Plan

When remodeling a bathroom, especially if you’re planning to replace sinks, cabinets, toilets and put in new flooring, you need to measure.

You don’t want to guess at what size cabinet will fit into the space you’ve laid out. Or worse yet, get the wrong size and either try to “make” it fit or have to return it.

It might be okay to have a few extra flooring tiles or leftover laminate, but you don’t want to have to start sanding down cabinets. Or in the case of a medicine cabinet/mirror, have gaps because you bought too small for a replacement, or have to enlarge the space because the cabinet is too big.

Tearing Out, Upgrading or Improving

As you saw in the video above, sometimes you can get away with leaving some things as they are and simply improving on them. Ceramic tiles around the tub and shower or on the walls behind the sink may be a bear to remove and replace.

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But you can see if simply reglazing those tiles will fit into your budget. For investors who are remodeling a bathroom, reglazing may be the best option. For homeowners, you might not like tile at all and may choose to rip it out and repaint or install wallpaper.

Simple bathroom designs are best though, especially if you’re on a set budget.

If you’re working on an older property that hasn’t been upgraded in several years, you may want to install a new toilet and sink and maybe even upgrade the tub and shower.

If the bathroom has some extra space and you can fit it into your budget, you may want to tear out an old tub and replace it with a smaller tub and a separate shower stall. A lot of modular homes have master bathrooms designed this way.

Some older homes have free-standing sinks without a cabinet. It’s always a good idea to replace that with a new sink and cabinet installation.

Flooring: Laminate, Tile or Carpeting

I’ve lived in apartments and rented houses that had carpeting in the bathroom. I don’t know why the owners did this, and I’d really advise against it. Maybe they were trying to do a cheap cover up or something instead of removing and replacing the floor.

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We replaced the laminate flooring with ceramic tile in our main bathroom. If you’re using a neutral color, you can add some splash of color with area mats in front of the sink, around the front of the toilet and next to the tub.

remodeling a bathroom

The Finishing Touches

“Less is More” is a good concept, whether it’s your own home or you’re flipping the property. Use simple bathroom designs that don’t cost a whole lot.

For showing the property or for when you have friends over, simply add a few little touches to the room to make it inviting.

Remodeling a bathroom in a flip? Share what your ideas!

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