There are few things more depressing than a tired, old, mildewed bathroom. And yet, most of us live with the bathroom that we have because we are too scared of the multitude of sins that we will uncover if and when we start removing tiles, cladding and old flooring, or because we simply can’t face the escalating bills.
You don’t have to have a giant bathroom to make it feel luxurious; in this series, we look at some top tips for creating a bathroom that oozes style – on a budget.
Keep what you can
The first place to start when trying to save money in a bathroom refurbishment is by looking at what you can keep – and what has to go. Unless you have eclectic style, the avocado shower tray has probably exceeded its welcome in your bathroom. However, if you can’t afford a whole suite, you could consider keeping inoffensive items, such as white toilets and sinks, and giving them a touch of glamour with new flush handles and taps. It’s surprising the difference a sparkling new tap can make. If your grubby sealant is getting you down, you don’t need to replace the entire bath or sink; a new bead of sealant will make the world of difference.
Repaint and re-grout
Your bathroom furniture isn’t the only thing that you could save from the big bathroom refurb. Floors can be painted to create a lovely, rustic effect. Some tiles are just begging for a little re-grout to bring them into this century - and with considerable savings on tiles which are time-consuming to lay.
Love shabby chic? Instead of spending a fortune on designer bathrooms, take a look at different second-hand marketplaces and create your own, shabby chic look. A lick of chalk paint and a wax coating can transform a boring bathroom cabinet - add beautiful new handles for the ultimate French farmhouse vibe.
Find what you like – and copy it
Having champagne taste and lemonade budget can be a challenge, but it’s not insurmountable. The first thing you need to do is research different styles to find what you like. Sometimes, it’s easier to start with what you DON’T like, and work your way back. If you fall in love with designer tiles, hunt for low-cost bathroom panels instead. Likewise, if you are desperate for tiled or polished wooden flooring, there are some incredible vinyl and laminate floorings that look as good as the real thing (and are easier to care for, too).
Before you take the plunge and buy the bathroom of your dreams, check with your bathroom installer or plumber to make sure that they are fit for purpose; some floorings, for example, aren’t suitable for wet rooms, and there are limits to the number of power showers that you can run off a circuit.
Next week we take a look at other ways that you can save money on your bathroom refurbishment. If you want to transform your home, follow Trust A Trader on Facebook or Twitter to find the best, reliable and rated plumbers and bathroom designers near you.