Renovating your bathroom won’t bring you the steam shower or bathtub you’ve always dreamed of. It can also improve the resale value of your home.
According to the HomeGuide website, the average return on investment for a bathroom renovation is 60% to 68%, with some upgrades adding more value than others. But you will need to spend some money before you can increase the value of your home – which is enough because you may need to consider home purchase loans or other financing to pay for it. You should expect to spend between 5% and 10% of your home’s value on a bathroom remodel, according to the National Kitchen and Bath Association. Accordingly, if your home is valued at $200,000, your bathroom remodel could cost between $10,000 and $20,000.
While there are a variety of factors that affect bathroom remodeling costs — from materials to room size to labor — understanding the average bathroom remodel cost can help you plan your budget.
How much does a typical bathroom remodel cost?
The cost of a bathroom remodel varies depending on the scope of the project, cost of materials, room size, and other factors. Choosing a DIY project may cut costs, while hiring a contractor or plumber will add to your bill.
Small, low-cost changes might include painting the walls, switching fixtures, or repainting the bathtub. More expensive reconfigurations can be installing a shower, rearranging the floor, or replacing cabinets.
“Bathroom remodels may range in the range of a simple update, with cosmetic fixes like paint cabinets and mirror replacements, to a gut makeover that includes installing a fancy new shower, replacing your tub, renovating it, and more,” says Allie Weiss, US. Architectural Digest Digital Director. “Replacing old plumbing fixtures is a common project and usually easy to do, as is adding extra storage and repainting to make a dull bathroom feel fresh.”
Here are your projected average bathroom remodeling costs, according to a survey by the Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies, depending on whether you want a minor or major update:
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bathroom remodel cost breakdown
Bathroom remodeling has always been an expensive endeavor, but recently costs have increased due to supply chain issues, labor shortages, and inflation.
Labor costs are going up more and more because of inflation,” says Jeremy Maher, chief operating officer of Phoenix Home Remodeling. “If someone got a quote from a contractor six months ago, and then wanted to start a project now, the price is nowhere near the same, unfortunately.”
Weiss says your costs may also increase if you need to stay elsewhere while remodeling your bathroom. “Make a plan about whether or not you can live realistically during the renovation,” she says. “It may be worth staying elsewhere for some time, if possible, since access to toilet and shower may become limited.”
From showers to cabinets to floors, here are some of the major costs to expect when remodeling a bathroom:
The average cost of a bathroom remodel can vary depending on the scope of the project, the size of the room, and the materials you choose. Estimating costs in advance will help you keep your project within budget.
Adding a new shower is a big project that can increase the cost of a bathroom remodel.
“The most expensive thing per square foot is a tiled shower floor,” Maher says. “With the tile floor, glass shower walls, motorized shower fixtures, and things like that, the bathroom is definitely one of the most expensive areas.”
The average cost to install a new showerhead is $6,576, according to HomeAdvisor, with a typical range from $3,000 to $10,000.
Flooring replacement typically costs between $800 and $3,500, or between $7 and $20 per square foot, according to the HomeGuide website. Costs will vary depending on the materials you choose and the size of your bathroom. Vinyl and linoleum will cost less, while wood and tile will cost more.
Cabinets can be another task, although costs will vary depending on whether you are installing new cabinets or refinishing cabinets you already have. Expect to pay between $500 and $3,600 to install the cabinet and between $200 and $800 to refurbish existing cabinets, per HomeGuide.
Maher says that cabinets have also become more expensive recently due to the current shortage of wood. “With the cost of wood and inflation, everything is going up,” Maher says. “This is another reason why cabinets are such an expensive part.”
If you want to replace bathroom countertops, be prepared to pay between $15 and $60 per square foot, or an average cost of between $450 and $1,500, according to HomeGuide. Materials such as ceramic or porcelain tile, laminate, and Formica usually cost less, while higher quality materials such as quartz, granite, and tile will raise costs.
Plumbing and electrical
If you want to make major structural changes, you may need to hire a plumber or electrician. Plumbing installation costs between $450 and $1,800 per fixture, while rerouting electrical wires can cost $2 to $4 per square foot, according to HomeGuide.
Upon completion of these projects, you may also have to purchase permits from your city.
“Every city has different requirements,” Maher says. “You may need a permit if you are removing a wall, changing electricity, or working in plumbing. There are some places where you can get a permit to change a water heater.”
If you need to hire a general contractor, expect the average cost to drop by about $4,000, according to Angie. As Maher mentioned, labor costs have increased recently, so you may have to pay more today than you would a year ago.
“It’s a supply and demand issue,” Maher says. “It’s getting harder and harder to find workers.”
How to finance a bathroom remodel
Once you have your bathroom vision in place, it’s time to figure out how to fund it. Unless you’re covering the full cost in cash up front, here are some financing options that can help you.
HELOC or real estate loan
A home equity loan or line of credit (HELOC) can be an affordable way to borrow against your home equity. Lenders usually allow you to get up to 85% or so of your available capital, which is the difference between the value of your home and the amount you owe on your mortgage.
HELOC is a revolving line of credit that you can count on when you need it. On the other hand, a home equity loan works as an installment loan – you get a lump sum up front and pay it back in fixed monthly payments over a fixed period. Be careful: because both are insured against the value of your home, you risk losing your home if you fail to pay it off.
HELOC might be best if you want more flexibility and don’t mind adjusting the price. After all, remodeling your bathroom may cost more than you expected. However, a home equity loan can be better if you know exactly how much money you will need at the start of your business and prefer a fixed interest rate over the life of the loan.
Another option to consider is cash refinancing. With this strategy, you’ll replace your existing mortgage with a new higher mortgage and get the difference in your pocket. You can use the extra money to fund your bathroom remodel.
And with interest rates rising, refinancing liquidity is not as affordable as it was a year ago. Additionally, you should be careful about adding time to your repayment period or inflating your mortgage.
“There is a lot of talk about falling home prices,” Maher says. “If you take out a cash refinance and the value of your home goes down, there’s a chance you already owe more than it’s worth.”
A personal loan is another financing option for your bathroom remodel. Some lenders allow you to borrow up to $100,000 to renovate a home.
Like a home equity loan, a personal loan is an installment loan that you’ll typically pay in fixed monthly installments over two to seven years.
Since most personal loans are unsecured, you may need premium credit to qualify for the lowest rates.
Bathroom remodel vs bathroom renovation
People often use remodeling and renovation interchangeably, but there may be some difference between the two terms. Remodeling often refers to changing the appearance of a bathroom with cosmetic updates, while renovation may involve larger structural alterations.
“The remodel may include cosmetic and functional upgrades, but it preserves the bathroom’s overall structure and structure, while the renovation is likely to be a larger project that may require demolition, moving plumbing lines, etc.,” says Weiss. “Some aspects of the redesign may be suitable for solo ‘crafts’ enthusiasts, while the revamp requires hiring a team.”
Since renovation is a more comprehensive project and may require a contractor, plumber, electrician, or other professional, it will likely come at a much higher price than a remodel. But if you plan to sell your home, you can eventually get your money back.
“High-tech no-touch toilets and faucets are popular, and people love the sleek, rimless look of showers,” Weiss says. ‘All of these investment features can totally help with your ROI. For low-cost upgrades, updating your bathroom hardware to a uniform color like brushed brass, making sure your space has enough light, and painting your cabinets white can improve Also the return on investment.”