Taking Charge Of Your Bathroom Renovations

in this series I’m not putting on my tool belt I’m not going to show you how to physically install tile yourself what I am going to do is help you successfully manage the construction process which will make your project stay on budget finish on time and be an enjoyable fulfilling experience this is what we call the evolution way we all want a beautiful bathroom like this one but where do you start I like to start with three inspiration photos you can get those from house Pinterest a Google search or even a magazine look closely what catches your eye is it the tile vanity paint color light fixtures in this bathroom they used a wood plank tile they chose chrome faucets to match their shower trims they have this 72 inch double vanity with drawers in the middle and they have a tile shower floor now that you’ve seen some good ideas here I want you to go back to your photos and write down what you like in each one and we’re gonna work on incorporating those aspects into your perfect bathroom one of the most exciting parts of your remodel is the selection process where as some say the design phase this part brings together your inspiration photos your tastes and most importantly how you want the bathroom to function and feel when it’s complete if you follow my lead and make your decisions in the order I lay out your project will run smooth and be enjoyable step 1 design your layout step 2 choose a vanity step 3 decide on your plumbing fixtures step 4 pick the mirrors accessories and shower doors Step five lighting an electric step 6 select the tile step 7 coordinate the paint and wall finishes step one is designing your layout can you think about your bathroom and you think about its current layout does it work for you or are you looking to change anything around just keep in mind if you’re looking to change the location of any plumbing fixtures or expand into another room this would increase the cost of the job an easy thing that you can change is your tub or shower area this bathtub like most standard bath tubs is 5 feet wide and 30 inches deep there are a lot of shower bases that are available that are the same dimensions that would fit right inside this opening the toilet bowl is a much harder thing to change if at all when you start to move a toilet bowl you get into moving the plumbing waste lines and that’s more complicated which in turn means more expensive the vanity on the other hand if you have the space to change a single vanity into a double vanity this is not that costly and I would go ahead and make that change if you wanted step 2 is choosing your vanity you can choose a single vanity a double vanity or a pedestal sink in this bathroom we had the space so we chose to do a double vanity it has two sinks it has a set of doors below each sink and a row of drawers in the middle this vanity was a prepackaged vanity bought online it came with the handles the cabinet itself the countertop and the sink the advantage to these packages are they are extremely cost effective and fit into most budgets the restriction is that the countertops come pre-drilled with holes for your faucet so this countertop came with a single hole which meant we had to choose a faucet that had the single stem in a single lever as opposed to three holes now if you don’t want to be restricted you can go completely custom where you choose your cabinet you can go white or gray or a gray with a stain different door styles then you would choose your countertop do you want a white quartz top with some veining do you want a gray top you can choose any countertop that you would like you also get to pick your hardware so where you going with the brass feeling or the black you can choose any of these to go with your

custom vanity vanities has a wide range of design and price it is all going to depend on the individuals budget but one tip is if you are very close to choosing a prepackaged vanity and the only thing that you don’t like is the knobs that is one thing that can easily be changed out step 3 is deciding on your plumbing fixtures this is the part where I find a lot of people get freaked out because they don’t think they know enough about construction to make these decisions but you can the German teach you how to use your mixer to make a cake and you understood her then you can understand plumbing fixtures you just haven’t had anybody teach you and that’s why we’re in this roughed in bathroom so the first thing you have to decide on is your tub or shower base in this case the customer chose an upgraded tile shower base this becomes more expensive because of the vinyl membrane that has to be installed first as your water per thing then you have to purchase the tile and you have to have the tile installed the next step is is choosing your plumbing fixtures and the most important component is this valve now most of us haven’t ever seen a valve what we see is the shower handle but it’s actually the valve that’s behind the wall that’s the most important part the plumber runs his plumbing with pipes up to this valve and then the water comes out the showerhead so this setup is a single handle and a single showerhead if you would like to add a handheld to your shower then it may require an additional valve now it’s time to choose the finish color of these plumbing fixtures the most popular colors today are chrome matte black brushed nickel and this brush brass is becoming very popular now every manufacturer doesn’t have the matching faucets – the matching showerhead in this case the customer wanted it all to match so they went with the Moen Gibson line and as you will see the shower handle will match the faucet handle now when it comes to the faucets if you recall in the last bathroom the customer had chosen a prepackaged vanity which had a single hole in the counter top this customer chose a wider spread faucet where the handles are separate from the faucet which will require three holes drilled into the countertop certain wider spread faucets do require the secretary it has to be purchased separately once you decide on all your plumbing fixtures you can purchase a shower drain to now it’s time to choose your mirrors accessories and shower doors you can choose to match these items to the same finish as your plumbing fixtures when it comes to mirrors you can either match your faucet or like in this case you can choose a more decorative frame when it comes to shower doors you have a few options either sliding glass doors or a fixed panel with a hinged door this is a custom shower door and it’s measured to fit your exact opening a true frameless door has no track on the top it only has brackets at the corners and it has a small track on the bottom to help support the glass you can choose from a few different types of handles but the finish of the handle and the hardware can affect the price of the door one option that I recommend is a sealer that’s applied to the inside of the glass for easy maintenance all you have to do is squeegee the glass and it comes clean lighting an electric this is one of the last items I have you choose because it ties into the vanity the mirrors your plumbing fixtures and the layout of the room general lighting for a bathroom it is nice to have high hats and it is nice to have a dedicated high hat over your shower tub area vanity lights you can choose to do one vanity light over each sink or if you have the space like in this bathroom you could choose to do a decorative wall sconce these don’t give off as much light they are more for looks now the last part of

electric is the outlets this bathroom has a single outlet and that is the standard but if you find yourself using a lot of plug-in products like hair dryers straighteners electric toothbrushes you can add a second outlet and not a lot of extra money but the important thing is is to make sure you tell the electrician while the walls are still open now it’s time to choose your tile tile makes the biggest design statement in every bathroom it ties together the selections that you’ve already chosen I’m going to talk about three categories of tile ceramic porcelain marble and glass ceramic and porcelain are the most widely chosen tile and they’re the most impervious to water and easiest to maintain popular tiles in this category are subway tile and wood plank tile like this one this is marble tile it’s porous and as natural veining it does require more maintenance as you are supposed to seal it on a regular basis it is more expensive to purchase and to install more and more people are leaning towards the porcelain version of the marble looking tile this is the porcelain printed version of the marble tile I’m going to go through with you the different parts of the tile install there are a few different components which will make up your shopping list all this information can be found in my free guide taking charge of your bathroom renovation the evolution way a common theme of mine is pre-planning your soap niche is the first thing that may have to be pre-planned if you choose to go with the traditional corner soap niche then this would get installed at the time of your tile install those corners so pitches come in a variety of colors and finishes if you choose to do a soap niche like this one this gets framed into the wall and is done prior to sheetrock now there are a few different options one is purchasing a prefabricated soap niche where the tile gets installed directly to the sides of this and the back of this or you can have one custom framed to any shape or size that you would like you would have to decide how to finish this soap niche the back the bottom the size so here we decided to cut the tiles at a 45 degree angle to make this edge but a lot of times you can purchase a piece of marble and that will end up as the bottom of your soap pinch the next thing you have to decide is where exactly are you installing tile in your bathroom every bathroom floor gets tile if you chose to do a vinyl pan in your shower then the shower floor will get tile and the walls of all of the tubs and showers get tile I like to install it to the ceiling now you have to figure out which pattern you would like the tile so in this case they went with a straight pattern where you the grout lines line up other options are a brick pattern a lot of times we see this with subway tile there are other more complicated patterns like a herringbone pattern which are very nice you just have to keep in mind that the more complicated the pattern the cost to install could increase and often times there’s a lot of waste that comes along with this tile so you also have to purchase more tile depending on which tile line you choose will depend on the edging every tile has an unfinished edge in order to cover this unfinished edge and make the install complete you need an edge certain lines come with a bullnose tile this bullnose tile installs next to your wall tile and it has a finished edge a lot of tiles don’t come with a bolos option which then you can choose to install a Schreuder strip like this one it’s a metal edging which comes in a lot of different colors you can choose to match your fixtures like we did here now for the grout the grout is the material that goes between all of the tiles there are two different kinds of grout unsanded and sanded rule of thumb is sanded grout gets installed on the floors and unsanded gets installed on the walls as

of recent the manufacturers have been coming up with a product that can be installed on both the walls and the floors so it’s best to ask your tile installer if he has a preference as to which material to use now the grout scum in a lot of different colors so you can choose to go with a grout color that matches your tile or you can do choose to go with a grout color that contrasts your tile you’ll see this a lot with white subway tile when people want to go with their dark breaths every bathroom needs a saddle a saddle is a transition piece between your tile floor and the neighboring floor it sits in the doorway it’s typically four inches wide by 36 inches long and is cut to fit by the Installer it comes in quartz or marble now if you chose to go with a shower with a tile floor then you most likely will have a curve that you step over to get into your shower this curb requires a threshold for the top of it the threshold is also made out of marble or quartz you can choose any color and have a custom made or the stock ones are typically six inches wide by six feet long and again are cut by the Installer to fit now you know all the pieces of tile you need to purchase but how much of it do you buy so in order to determine this you would measure the square footage which is simply length times width now in most cases your contractor would tell you how much material to buy fine you may want to pre-plan or for budgeting purposes know how much it will cost which is based on the square footage you need to buy so let’s measure this shower base so this shower base is 31 inches long and it’s 49 inches wide so that’s about three feet by four feet which three times four is 12 which is 12 square feet now when it comes to shower floor tile a lot of the tile comes on sheets like this this sheet is 1 foot by 1 foot which is one square foot so you would need 12 sheets now the tile gets cut at every edge which produces waste so you typically order 15% more to cover waste which would equate to 2 more sheets in this case now you would do the same thing for the rest of your bathroom so when it comes to the soap niche it’s 10 inches high and it’s again 49 inches wide so you would write that down add your 15 percent waste and that’s how much of the tile for the back of your soap that you would need you would do the same thing for the walls and the floor of your bathroom step 7 is coordinating your paint and wall finishes take a breath is the last decision you have to make paint is the option most often used I like to use the Benjamin Moore most popular color lists to help make my decision so I don’t drive myself crazy and if you’re feeling adventurous you could try a black ceiling wallpaper is another option the disadvantage is that it’s harder to change them paint and there could be damage to your walls once you remove it shiplap has become very popular thanks to chip and Joanna you could choose to do this on one wall or all your walls congratulations on making smart decisions and completing the design phase now you’re prepared to get estimates you should always get estimates after you have planned the whole project and I suggest giving the contractor a detailed list when they come this ensures that all of the estimates will be based on the same job with the exact options and materials you are choosing as we have discussed different materials can cost different amounts to install so in order to get an accurate estimate for the bathroom you have designed it is important to lead the contractor and tell them what you want during the estimate process see how the

interaction feels you want the contractor to be on your team you should also ask the contractor to send over a schedule along with the estimate so you can see how they operate the majority of the work can be done in two weeks your homework isn’t done yet once you get the estimates back you would think each estimate would be exactly as your list reads unfortunately the reality is most won’t is this surprising it is and it still makes me crazy every time I type up an estimate a lot of contractors will leave out certain options in order to make their price look lower than other contractors and then in order to achieve the options you want the contractor will charge you for it and you will end up paying the same or more as somebody else please keep this in mind as you review your estimates now it’s time to execute first and foremost be confident in your selections there are going to be a lot of people who try to influence your decisions this can drag out the decision-making process and can become very frustrating choose a contractor that is going to be on your team even with that being said I think it’s important for you to oversee the project so that everything goes smooth with this new education you should feel empowered to be able to do this have all of your materials delivered to your house prior to construction beginning to ensure the schedule stays on time and finally have fun watch your masterpiece come to life and be proud