Whether you are preparing to sell your home or just want to improve your own surroundings, upgrading your bathroom need not cost a lot of money. In fact, real estate studies have shown that a minor bathroom remodel will usually yield a larger financial return than a more extreme renovation. The following tips will help you plan a minor bathroom update that is in keeping with your budget.
Visit a model home
One of the best ways to stay on top of current home improvement trends is to visit model homes. Pay attention to lower cost items like mirrors, faucets and fixtures to find out what is currently in vogue. Model homes are also a great place to get decorating ideas for when it is time for those finishing touches like selecting a rug and shower curtain.
Replace the mirror
A framed mirror is one of the easiest and most stylish bathroom upgrades. An unframed mirror will make your bathroom look dated, and a framed one will be easy to install since it is just like hanging a picture. Consider getting a larger mirror than the one you have. That way, if the wall gets slightly damaged when you remove the old mirror, the new one will cover up any imperfections.
Install new faucets and light fixtures
After a few minutes in the bathroom plumbing section of your local home improvement store, you will discover that chrome faucets are the frugal choice. Don't forget to also replace the bathtub faucet and shower head. Installing a handheld sprayer in your shower can make it look more upscale and make cleaning it a breeze. Sometimes upgrading an everyday object like a faucet or shower head can be a life changer, and putting in a nice new fixture above your vanity will help you see your bathroom in a whole new light.
Do not buy a new vanity
Cabinets are expensive, and there is no need to replace your vanity, anyway. Installing a new countertop will give your existing vanity a brand new look, and you can repaint the vanity yourself if needed. If you are remodeling your bathroom, you are most likely going to be repainting the entire room, anyway. Consider using the same white paint for the walls and vanity to save money on painting supplies. The great thing about white is that it makes a small bathroom feel larger and allows you to frequently change your décor.
Save money by going "shabby chic"
If you are handy and have an affinity for rustic design, you might even be able to construct a new vanity out of an old piece of furniture you find at a flea market. If that sounds like too big of a project, consider "antiquing" your existing vanity, which is a popular do-it-yourself refinishing technique that will go great with other rustic décor, such as a distressed shelf for towels. Complete the shabby chic look with an antique-looking soap dish and a mason jar for storing toothbrushes.
If you decide to re-tile the floor or replace the tub or shower, it might be time to bring in a licensed contractor. Some projects require more experience than others, and unexpected expenses can quickly spiral out of control. That said, you will probably be happy with just a few small changes, and your pocketbook will thank you.