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Bathroom Remodeling

Secret Bathroom Remodeling Tips: Avoid Mistakes In 2024

Remodeling your bathroom can be exciting, but avoiding costly mistakes is key. 

This expert advice will help you to navigate the process, from common mistakes to avoid to costs to design and functionality tips. 

In this guide: 

  1. Bathroom Remodeling Mistakes to Avoid 
  2. Unexpected Bathroom Remodeling Costs 
  3. Essential Checklist For Bathroom Remodeling 
  4. Bathroom Design & Functionality Tips 
  5. Right Bathroom Materials 
  6. Bathroom Lighting and Ventilation Tips 
  7. DIY vs Hiring a Bathroom Pro 
  8. FAQs 

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Bathroom Remodeling Mistakes to Avoid 

Avoiding common bathroom remodel mistakes ensures a smooth and successful renovation. First, thorough planning is essential. It sets the foundation for everything that follows. Without it, you risk overlooking crucial details.  

Budgeting accurately prevents the shock of unexpected costs. Many homeowners regret not setting aside a contingency fund for unforeseen expenses. Selecting appropriate materials is another key consideration. The wrong choices can lead to durability issues or style mismatches. 

Hiring a qualified contractor can make or break your project. Look for someone with a track record of bathroom remodel successes.  

Contractor checking doing meiditons to a wall

Neglecting the plumbing and electrical systems can cause major setbacks. These systems might need upgrades to handle new fixtures or to comply with current building codes. 

Adequate ventilation is non-negotiable. Without it, moisture builds up, inviting mold and mildew. Good lighting makes the bathroom functional and inviting. It requires a thoughtful approach, blending task, ambient, and accent lighting effectively. 

Lastly, chasing fleeting trends can lead to early remodel regrets. Opt for a balance between trendy and timeless to ensure your bathroom remains stylish and functional in the long run.  

Addressing these common remodel problems upfront will help create a bathroom that meets your needs and stands the test of time. 

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Unexpected Bathroom Remodeling Costs 

When planning a bathroom remodel, it's crucial to account for hidden costs that can surface. A common oversight is the average cost of bathroom remodel projects, which can escalate due to unexpected issues. Below is a table detailing potential unforeseen expenses and their average costs

Item Average Cost Range
Plumbing repairs $500 - $1,500
Electrical updates $400 - $1,200
Structural changes $1,000 - $2,500
Mold or water damage repair $500 - $3,000
Permits $200 - $800


These costs highlight the importance of thorough inspection and budget planning. Plumbing and electrical updates often become necessary when fixtures are moved or added.

Structural changes, such as knocking down walls or changing the floor plan, require additional work and materials. Mold or water damage, hidden until demolition, can significantly increase costs. Lastly, obtaining the necessary permits can add to your budget. 

To mitigate these unexpected costs, it's advisable to have a contingency fund of at least 20% of the total remodel budget. This proactive approach ensures that you're prepared for any surprises and helps keep your project on track.  

Planning for these potential expenses can make the difference between a smooth remodel and a stressful, over-budget project. 

Essential Checklist for Your Bathroom Remodel 

An essential checklist for your bathroom remodel helps streamline the process. It ensures all critical aspects are considered and addressed. This checklist is a roadmap for planning, executing, and completing a successful remodel with minimal stress. 


  1. Define Your Goals: Determine what you want to achieve. Is it more functionality, updated aesthetics, or both? 
  2. Set a Budget: Include costs for materials, labor, permits, and a contingency fund for unexpected expenses. 
  3. Hire Professionals: Research and select experienced contractors. Verify their credentials and references. 
  4. Design and Layout: Plan the layout and design. Consider space utilization, lighting, and storage. 
  5. Select Materials: Choose materials for durability, maintenance, and style. Think about tiles, fixtures, and countertops. 
  6. Plumbing and Electrical: Assess the need for updates or reconfiguration to meet current codes and your layout. 
  7. Ventilation and Lighting: Ensure adequate ventilation to prevent mold. Plan for a mix of task, ambient, and accent lighting. 
  8.  Permits and Inspections: Obtain necessary permits. Schedule inspections as required by local regulations. 
  9. Construction Timeline: Discuss the timeline with your contractor. Understand the sequence of tasks and expected completion dates. 
  10. Final Walkthrough: Conduct a thorough inspection with your contractor to address any issues before finalizing the project. 

This checklist guides you through each step, from initial planning to bathroom remodel completion. It helps ensure nothing is overlooked, contributing to a well-executed remodel that meets your needs and budget. 

Bathroom Design & Functionality 

When planning your bathroom makeover, keep in mind bathroom design and functionality. The goal is to create a space that looks good and works well for your needs.

bathroom space with common appliances, toilet and shower

Here’s how to do it: 

  1. Use space wisely: In small bathrooms, every inch counts. Choose designs that make the room look bigger, like using wall-hung units. This can help keep the floor clear and make the bathroom feel more spacious. 
  2. Light it up right: Good lighting is key. You want bright lights for shaving or applying makeup and softer lights to relax by. Think about adding different types of lights to get this balance. 
  3. Think about storage: Nobody likes clutter. Built-in shelves or cabinets keep things tidy and out of the way. This means you can have all your bathroom essentials hidden but handy. 
  4. Pick materials that last: Choose stuff that can handle moisture well and are easy to clean. Tiles are great for floors and walls, and materials like quartz are good for countertops because they don’t stain easily. 
  5. Make it accessible: If you’re planning to stay in your home for a long time, think about adding features like grab bars or a walk-in shower. This makes sure everyone can use the bathroom safely, no matter their age or mobility. 
  6. Don’t forget ventilation: A fan or a window that opens helps keep your bathroom dry and mold-free. This is really important for keeping the room fresh and healthy. 

Keeping these tips in mind will help you design a bathroom that’s both beautiful and practical. 

Maximize Your Bathroom's Potential: Discover Personalized Remodeling Ideas!

Choosing the Right Bathroom Materials 

Selecting the appropriate materials is a key step to avoid bathroom remodel mistakes

Sample of materials for floor, carpet or wall.

This section highlights important considerations when choosing materials for various bathroom surfaces, aiming to balance aesthetics, durability, and maintenance needs. 

  1. Flooring: Opt for non-slip, water-resistant materials. Porcelain or ceramic tiles are popular due to their durability and wide range of designs. Avoid materials that are prone to water damage or require frequent sealing. 
  2. Countertops: Quartz stands out for its durability and low maintenance, making it a wise choice over materials that stain easily or are sensitive to moisture. 
  3. Shower Tiles: For shower areas, select tiles that are easy to clean and resistant to mold. Ceramic, porcelain, and glass tiles are recommended for their practicality and aesthetic appeal. 
  4. Vanities: Consider the humidity level in your bathroom when choosing vanity materials. Solid wood, treated for moisture resistance, or PVC materials are suitable for longevity and ease of maintenance. 
  5. Fixtures: Choose fixtures with a finish that matches the overall design and is known for its resistance to tarnishing and corrosion. Brushed nickel and stainless steel are reliable options. 

Here is a table comparing popular bathroom materials based on their pros and cons

Material Pros Cons
Porcelain Durable, water-resistant Can be costly
Quartz Low maintenance, durable Higher cost compared to some
Ceramic Wide range, cost-effective Prone to chipping
Glass Tiles Mold-resistant, stylish Requires regular cleaning
PVC Moisture-resistant May not match all aesthetics

By choosing the right materials, you can ensure your bathroom remodel is both beautiful and functional, avoiding the common pitfalls of selecting materials that don't meet the space's demands or your lifestyle. 

Bathroom Lighting & Ventilation 

Proper bathroom lighting and ventilation are key to preventing common bathroom remodel mistakes. Understanding how to optimize these aspects can enhance the functionality and longevity of the bathroom. 

  • Lighting Placement: Strategic placement of lighting fixtures ensures no area is left dim or shadowed. Task lighting near mirrors and ambient lighting for general use are essential. Consider LED options for energy efficiency and longevity. 
  • Ventilation Solutions: Adequate ventilation is crucial for preventing mold and mildew. A high-quality exhaust fan, ideally with a humidity sensor, will effectively remove moist air. Ensure the fan's capacity is suitable for the bathroom's size. 
  • Natural Light: Maximizing natural light can make the bathroom feel more spacious and welcoming. Skylights or frosted windows provide privacy while allowing light in. 
  • Mirror and Lighting Combination: Placing lights on either side of the mirror reduces shadows on the face, ideal for grooming tasks. Overhead lighting alone can create unwanted shadows. 
  • Ventilation Placement: The exhaust fan should be placed near the shower or bath area for maximum effectiveness in moisture control. 
  • Energy-Efficient Options: For both lighting and fans, opting for energy-efficient models saves on electricity bills and is better for the environment. 

Incorporating these lighting and ventilation tips can significantly impact the success of a bathroom remodel. They ensure the space is not only well-lit and aesthetically pleasing but also healthy and moisture-free. 

DIY vs. Hiring a Contractor 

When considering a bathroom remodel, deciding between DIY bathroom remodel and hiring a professional contractor is crucial.  

contractor working in the bathroom

Both options have their advantages and challenges, and understanding them helps avoid common mistakes. 

  1. Assess Skills and Experience: DIY projects require a certain level of skill. Evaluate your abilities realistically to avoid costly errors. 
  2. Understand Time Commitment: DIY projects often take longer than expected. Consider if you have the time to commit to the project from start to finish. 
  3. Budget Considerations: While DIY might seem cheaper, unexpected expenses can arise. Professional contractors can sometimes offer better prices for materials through their networks. 
  4. Quality of Work: Professional contractors bring experience and expertise, ensuring high-quality work that adheres to codes and standards. 
  5. Warranty and Accountability: Professionals typically offer warranties for their work. DIY projects lack this safety net. 
  6. Permits and Regulations: Navigating building codes and permits can be complex. Contractors are familiar with these requirements and can handle the paperwork. 

Weighing the pros and cons of DIY versus hiring a contractor helps make an informed decision. This approach prevents common mistakes, ensuring a smooth and successful bathroom remodel. 

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FAQ Section on Bathroom Remodeling 

What is the hardest part of the bathroom renovation?  

The hardest part often involves plumbing and electrical work. This is because it requires specific skills and knowledge about codes and regulations. These tasks can be complex and are best handled by professionals. 

What do I need to know before remodeling my bathroom?  

Before starting, understand your budget, design preferences, and functional needs. Know the materials that work best in wet areas and decide on the layout. Also, consider if you need to update plumbing or electrical systems. 

When remodeling a bathroom, what should I pick first?  

Start with choosing your layout. This helps in deciding where fixtures like the toilet, sink, and shower will go. After the layout, select tiles and larger fixtures since they influence the room's look and feel. 

What not to forget when remodeling a bathroom?  

Don’t forget ventilation. A good exhaust fan or window helps prevent mold and mildew. Also, remember lighting. A mix of task and ambient lighting is important for a functional and inviting space. 

What is the rule of thumb for bathroom remodel?  

A rule of thumb is to spend no more than 5% to 10% of your home’s value on a bathroom remodel. This helps ensure you don’t overinvest in the project and can see a return on your investment. 

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Related Resources 

Bathroom Remodeling Services: Full Guide To Get Started

DIY Bathroom Remodel VS Hire A Bathroom Pro: Which Fits You?

Bathroom Trend 2024: Bathroom Remodel Ideas 

Contractors Choice in 2024: What to Know Before Hiring   

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Last update: 13 Jul 2024

Written by Anna

MyGreenHome editors Team is a professional team of copywriters and writes with dozens of years of experience covering consumers, financial and business products and services

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