10 bathroom remodel mistakes you must avoid [2023]

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A well-designed bathroom increases the value of your home. But it’s easy to make mistakes remodeling your bathroom. Mistakes make you unhappy with the result, and you can’t recover the remodel cost in the property price.

bathroom remodel mistakes

Here are the most common mistakes people make

A well-designed bathroom adds value to your home, but you need to avoid some common mistakes. Here are the 10 most common mistakes homeowners make when remodeling their bathrooms:

  1. Insufficient bathroom renovation budget: Calculate the costs of materials and labor and add 25% to avoid running out of money in the middle of the project.
  2. Not enough research: Research everything from layouts to materials, ask for quotes from designers and contractors, and don’t take the first offer.
  3. Drainage in the wrong place: Measure all plumbing correctly and ensure proper connection to avoid dampness, mold, and unpleasant smells.
  4. Not enough storage space: Plan for everything you need to store and add some extra space to avoid clutter and make cleaning easier.
  5. Bad ventilation: Install an extractor fan for constant fresh air flow to remove moisture and avoid deterioration or mold.
  6. Poor lighting: Use different types of lighting for different purposes and consider windowless bathrooms, working with mirrors and lights to create a more open feel.
  7. Forgetting about windows: Consider privacy and opt for window blinds or frosted glass.
  8. Poor layout planning: Prioritize functionality over design and make sure fixtures and fittings preserve an open and spacious feel.
  9. Poor project management: Plan deliveries ahead of time and ensure nothing is missing, damaged, or wrong in color before work starts to save time and money.
  10. Not asking for help: Consult with contractors and designers even if you plan to do everything yourself, and don’t neglect technical areas like plumbing and electricity.

What do you think? Which of them could cost you the most?

1. Insufficient budget

You want the best for your dream bathroom remodel project, and it’s easy to overspend.

First, you could hurt your personal finances by overspending. Don’t waste your emergency fund or retirement savings to have a bit more impressive bathroom. It’s not worth it!

The other possibility is you run out of money in the middle of your bathroom remodeling project. If you must leave it unfinished, it can impact the resale value of your home and nag you for years.

Make a plan, calculate the costs of the materials and work, then add 25%.

2. Not enough research

Remodeling your bathroom is expensive. Research everything from layouts to the materials. Ask for quotes from designers and contractors. Never take the first offer.

bathroom remodel mistakes designers

Always ask what they can do to lower the price.

You can always change your mind before you sight the contracts or pay the bill. Don’t be pressured into something you don’t like.

Even if it feels awkward, never do anything you don’t want to do.

3. Drainage in the wrong place

Measure all the plumbing correctly. The contractors should take extra care to ensure everything is tight and well connected. The leaks may lead to dampness, mold, and unpleasant smells. What is the length of the pipes, and at what angle should they be installed to ensure water flows at an expected rate?

bathroom remodel mistakes connected

This is something you could let a contractor to handle even if you plan a DIY bathroom renovation project.

Fixing plumbing later is not something you want to do.

4. Not enough storage space

Think about everything you would want to store in your bathroom. Towels and toilet paper, cosmetics, and cleaning chemicals. Make a plan to store everything comfortably and then add some extra space.

If you don’t have enough space, you will clutter your bathroom. A cluttered bathroom is not conducive to relaxation, and it takes more time to clean.

5. Bad ventilation

Your bathroom is the wettest place in your home. Even if you don’t splash water all over the place, the water evaporates from wet surfaces and toilet. At the same time, the bathroom door is usually closed.

bathroom remodel mistakes lighting

You need a constant fresh air flow into your bathroom to remove moisture. An extractor fan is the best way to do it. If you have insufficient ventilation, then the moisture will slowly deteriorate your interior, and you will have to remodel everything much sooner. Ensure proper ventilation.

In the worst case, you’ll have mold that can become a health hazard.

6. Poor lighting

When all the lights are on, your bathroom should be bright. Use different types of lighting in your bathroom, and they don’t have to be all on simultaneously. Sometimes you may want to have a relaxing bath in a darkened bathroom, but in the morning, you may want brightness that helps you wake up.

It’s easy to add more lights to your bathroom. More lights will make it appear bigger and brighter.

In the case of windowless bathrooms, work with mirrors and lights to create a more open feel.

7. Forgetting about windows

If you have windows, think about what’s visible from the outside. Sometimes, there’s no problem. Your windows open to areas where nobody can look in, even if they tried. But if there’s a building across your bathroom windows, then you should consider what’s visible to the person outside.

The easiest way to get privacy is either window blinds or frosted glass. I would opt for something I can remove when I feel safe. Then you can enjoy the windows more when you feel like it but can close off the view when needed.

Pro tip: think about what’s visible from the outside in the dark.

8. Poor layout planning

If you remodel an existing room, then you are bound by the space you have. You have more freedom when you are just working out the detailed layout of your new home or full house renovation.

bathroom remodel mistakes plumbing

Do you have room for a freestanding bath? What size fixtures and fittings should you select to preserve an open and spacious feel in your bathroom?

Functionality beats design!

You use your bathroom a 1000 times every year. Make it ergonomic and functional first and then as beautiful as possible.

9. Poor project management

When will the work start? Everything has to be done in the correct order. When you have contracted a plumber to connect everything, then you should have all items delivered before they start.

When deliveries arrive, ensure nothing is missing, the colors are right, and there’s no damage on the items.

Project management will save you money by saving time. Planning will also let you complete the whole project in the shortest possible time.

10. Not asking for help

DIY projects are great! But if you are doing it for the first time, then you might want to ask for help.

The two most obvious areas technically are plumbing and electricity. Getting electricity right in a room with flowing water is pretty important.

But the design is also important. When you use your bathroom, you don’t think about the pipes and cables. But if something is not looking as you wanted it or is inconvenient to use, it will nag you for years.

For example, I have two lighting sections in my bathroom, the left and right areas. I had a two-part switch for it. The left side of the switch turned on the right side and vice versa. Small thing but really annoying. All the guests got it wrong every time.

Luckily, the solution was simple. I just opened up the switch’s housing and turned it upside down. Now the left switch turns on the left lights and so forth.

But what’s the most expensive mistake?

I covered 3 mistakes that could cost you a lot and are hard to fix. Not enough research makes you pay more for things. You will never get that money back.

Not enough research can also lead to poor layout. Your bathroom would be too cramped or uncomfortable. Something you can avoid with ergonomic and functional design.

I think I have an eye for design. I’m sure you do too. We may think we don’t need help from professionals. Even if you plan to do everything yourself, book a couple of hours for consulting with contractors and designers. They have seen it all and can save you thousands of dollars.

What mistakes have you made in your remodels? Let us know in the comments.

Ariel Path

With over three decades of experience in food manufacturing and kitchen design, I bring a wealth of knowledge to the table. My expertise spans across various aspects of the culinary world, from kitchen appliances to cooking techniques, food selection, and promoting a healthy lifestyle. My ultimate goal is to educate and inspire you in creating your dream kitchen, where functionality meets aesthetics. As a trusted source, I strive to provide valuable insights and guidance to make your kitchen remodel an enjoyable and successful experience. Together, let's transform your space into a culinary haven that reflects your unique style and meets your specific needs. See more details here.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Avatar photo
    Brandon Foster

    I think forgetting about windows is a common mistake when remodeling a bathroom. Sometimes, we focus too much on the interior and forget that windows are an essential element of the room. However, privacy is crucial, and we must consider what’s visible from the outside, especially if our bathroom windows open to the street.

    1. cropped ariel path
      Ariel Path

      You’re absolutely right! Privacy is crucial, and it’s easy to forget about windows when planning a bathroom remodel. In addition to window blinds or frosted glass, another option is to install window films. They come in various designs and can add a decorative touch to your bathroom while ensuring privacy. Thank you for bringing up this essential point.

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