Thinking of a bathroom remodel but not sure where to start? Ever wondered what it takes to remodel a bathroom and concerned you might make a bathroom remodeling mistake? Then read on as we dive into what goes into a bathroom remodel and how you can turn yours into a spa-like retreat!
1. Make a list of your ‘must have’,’ nice to have’ and ‘pinch me’ items.
This will help you prioritize and determine the items you can’t live without and the items you are willing to compromise on if your budget is stretched too thin. In this case study, the homeowner’s “must have” list included a large walk-in shower and a double vanity, but working within a small footprint, the design challenge was ensuring we could make everything fit in the space.
2. Determine your budget.
Be realistic about how much a bathroom remodel costs. A great place to start is the Cost vs. Value report. A lot of factors go into the final contract value. If you are keeping the bathroom footprint the same, it’s what’s called a “pull and replace” and it is easier to do that than changing the configuration and layout of your bathroom. Finishes are obviously the other biggest driver. From soaking tubs to large glass shower enclosures to fabulous high-end vanities and faucets, you can easily get carried away and completely blow your budget.
In our case study, the clients wanted to change the footprint of the bathroom. We created a larger shower by removing a non-load bearing faux wall, as well as using space from a hall linen closet to create room for a double vanity. They also decided to get rid of the tub completely and move the location of the toilet. These sorts of design changes increase the cost of a bathroom remodel, but our client put their trust in our design expertise and ability to keep their budget on track!
3. Do your research on remodeling contractors.
If you are doing a simple update to flooring and fixtures and are willing to do more of the design and project management yourself, then a General Contractor may be the best option. However, if you are looking for a design thoughtful, more complex bathroom remodel, then a design build firm like Synergy may be a better option. Although using a design build firm like Synergy may initially sound more expensive, many homeowners value a ‘one stop shop’ experience. Having a team of experts help from the start of the project all the way through and not having to deal with coordination of and handoffs between designers and contractors or tradespeople is one of the biggest benefits. Check out our previous blog Best Home Remodelers in Reston and Where to Find Them for more insights.
Because of the complexity of removing walls and redesigning the bathroom layout (as well as wanting the freedom of working with a company who would take care of everything on their behalf), our clients chose to work with Synergy. They did not want to be in the position of making design choices by themselves or trying to project manage a designer, general contractor and trades. The full service offered by Synergy was the perfect fit for their remodeling project.
4. Be realistic in your expectations of how long a bathroom remodel takes.
Given we’re all spending so much time at home because of the COVID-19 pandemic, It might not surprise you to know that home remodeling services are in high demand. Pandemic aside, we do sometimes receive requests from homeowners to start “right away” and expect a home remodel can be completed within a month of initial contact. Design thoughtful home remodels take time. Slow down! Design comes first, then construction. Be wary of any contractor who tells you they can start construction “next week”. That’s a surefire way to set yourself up for a bathroom remodel nightmare. No contractor should come near your home until design has been finalized and materials have been ordered. The last thing you want is for a contractor to cheerily shout as they walk out of the door on Day 1, “See you in five weeks when the vanities arrive!” having just demolished your bathroom.
Our client trusted Synergy’s Renovation Roadmap™ to provide a plan they could follow along with so they knew exactly where they were at each stage of their project. We have a saying in Synergy, “Materials wait for construction, construction doesn’t wait for materials” so when we tell you a start and end date for your bathroom remodel, you can count on us to start (and finish!) when we say we will.
5. Partner with your chosen home remodeler and enjoy the process!
Renovate happy really isn’t just a tagline for Synergy! We believe you CAN have fun remodeling your home if you adopt the right mindset. If you’ve chosen the right home remodeler, you should feel like a partner who is listened to throughout the process. In return, your home remodeler will value your partnership rather than it being more like just a vendor relationship. If you openly communicate your concerns and questions (as well as praise), you’ll find that common ground.
At Synergy, we don’t have a one size fits all approach. Every home remodel we work on is a custom project. We focus on providing an exceptional client experience with predictable results and high-quality standards so you can enjoy the process! As our case study client put it in the middle of her project,
“We are currently having our master bath completely remodeled by Reston based Synergy Design and Construction. Total gutting and redesign. I cannot say enough so far, this company has it completely together. The team is very friendly, professional and on the ball, exceptional communication, the process has been clearly described in great detail, and the quality of work so far is excellent (about half way done now). They go to great lengths to keep the worksite tidy. Always on time. The company has won numerous awards and I can see why. The price is going to be higher but you get what you pay for. It’s going to be done right and done right the first time. A neighbor down the street just had them do a significant remodel in her townhome, the owner made it a point the other day to tell me how extremely satisfied she is with their work when she saw me outside”
And here is the finished product!