When it comes to renovating, bathrooms are among the most expensive rooms to update; however, just because it can cost a lot to renovate your bathroom doesn't mean you just have to pay up. With some time, planning, and taking on some work yourself, you can have a bathroom renovation with a moderate price tag that is the envy of your neighborhood. Here are some ideas on how to save money on your bathroom renovation.
Plan and Research
Before you call a contractor and ask for prices, take the time to plan what you want in detail. A contractor will probably ask you the same questions, so if you have a really good idea beforehand, he will be able to give you an accurate bid.
It greatly increases the cost of a bathroom renovation when you have to move plumbing. If possible, don't relocate the toilet, sink, tub, or shower.
Shop around for the things you want to put into your new bathroom. While a contractor may be able to get better prices on many new items, you may still be able to get better deals. Don't just look at home supply stores. Consider "off the beaten track" sources for lighting and plumbing fixtures, as well as tiles, cabinets, and toilets.
Online suppliers are a good option. They often include free shipping. Ebay, flea markets, yard sales, and recycle stores are all potential sources for "one of a kind" items not available at supply stores. Old plumbing and lighting fixtures can usually be retrofitted to modern standards.
Get Bids From Multiple Contractors
Select only contractors who have been recommended to you and with whom you feel comfortable doing business. Then ask for bids from at least 3 of them. Some contractors will have no problem doing some up-front or finishing work on the job. They will lower their bid based on the amount of "sweat equity" you're willing to put in.
Do Some Work Yourself
Save yourself some money by doing the demo work yourself. Remove lighting and plumbing fixtures, as well as medicine cabinets, storage units, and even toilets yourself.
You can save money on disposal feesas well. Since a contractor will likely just throw everything into a dumpster and take it to the landfill, donate the items you remove to a secondhand store to save the disposal fees.
Murray Anderson is an experienced freelance writer whose work has appeared on numerous web sites, as well as in newspapers and books in both the US and Canada. He is often cited as an expert on home related topics and is a regular contributor to DoItYourself.com.